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BSc Actuarial Science


UCAS code: N321

Programme requirement: GCSE pass at grade A or A* in Mathematics

Usual standard offer:
A level: grades A A A, one of which must be Mathematics. Further Mathematics is highly desirable

International Baccalaureate: Diploma with 38 points including 7 6 6 at Higher level (with 7 in Mathematics)

Other qualifications are considered

For further details, see lse.ac.uk/ug/apply/asa

Applications 2015: 579

First year students 2015:

First year:

(* half unit)

Second year:

Third year:

(Students can replace courses to the value of one unit with another approved subject, but this will affect exemptions from examinations set by Institute and Faculty of Actuaries. Stochastic Processes and Time Series and Forecasting cannot be substituted.) 

Please note that not every course is available each year and that some courses may only be available with the permission of the course convenor and/or may be subject to space. 

You can find the most up-to-date list of optional courses in the  Programme Regulations section of the current School Calendar.  

You must note however that while care has been taken to ensure that this information is up to date and correct, a change of circumstances since publication may cause the School to change, suspend or withdraw a course or programme of study, or change the fees that apply to it. The School will neither be liable for information that after publication becomes inaccurate or irrelevant, nor for changing, suspending or withdrawing a course or programme of study due to exceptional circumstances or events outside of its control. You must also note that places are limited on some courses or programmes of study and/or subject to specific entry requirements. The School cannot therefore guarantee you a place. You should visit the School’s Calendar, or contact the relevant academic department, for information on the availability and/or content of courses and programmes of study. Certain substantive changes will be listed on the lse.ac.uk/cal/ug/updates page.

Programme details

First year

Elementary Statistical Theory is a theoretical statistics course which is appropriate whether or not your A level Mathematics course included statistics. It forms the basis for later statistics options. Mathematical Methods is an introductory-level "how to do it" course designed to prepare you for using mathematics seriously in the social sciences, or any other context. You have the choice of either Elements of Accounting, Financial Institutions and Financial Management which gives you an introduction to the preparation, uses and limitations of accounting information and the problems of finance and investment or Introduction to Abstract Mathematics, which introduces you to rigorous mathematical thinking and is strongly recommended for first-year students. You will take Economics A or Economics B, depending on your economics background. Economics B is only for students with A level Economics or equivalent.

Second year

Probability, Distribution Theory and Inference will develop your knowledge of probability and statistics beyond the first-year course. It will also provide the probability and statistics basis for all third-year courses. Further Mathematical Methods covers the mathematics needed for statistics and actuarial courses. Actuarial Investigations: Financial is a course on compound interest techniques from an actuarial viewpoint. Survival Models is an introduction to actuarial mathematics and statistics. An outside option can be chosen from courses in economics, accounting, finance, mathematics, sociology, social psychology and information systems, or anything else that might interest you. Alternatively you can do an applied statistics project. 

Third year

Stochastic Processes explores stochastic processes and applications to insurance. Time Series and Forecasting introduces the statistical analysis of time series data and simple models. Actuarial Mathematics: Life is an introduction to the theory and techniques of life insurance and pensions. Actuarial Mathematics: General introduces actuarial work in non-life insurance. Stochastic and Actuarial Methods in Finance offers applications of stochastic processes and actuarial models in finance.  

Regression and Generalised Linear Models covers the most important parts of the theory and application of regression models, generalised linear models and the analysis of variance. Bayesian Inference covers statistical decision theory: risk, decision rules, loss and utility functions, Bayesian expected loss, and frequentist risk. Stochastic Simulation covers important techniques in computer simulation and applications to insurance and finance. 

You might be able to gain exemptions from the core technical stage of the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries examinations if you reach a sufficient standard in the relevant LSE courses. This is normally well above a pass mark. In addition to this, LSE has an accreditation agreement with the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries. This means that students with a high enough average mark on related courses can get all exemptions on offer, even if that is not the case for individual courses. The exemption system on a course-by-course basis will still be in place. 

There may be changes to the programme given here for the second and third years of the degree to keep up with developments in actuarial science.