Learn to Analyze and Manage Risk

The Master of Science in Actuarial Science at Boston University’s Metropolitan College (MET) provides you with the tools and knowledge to excel as an actuary. A solid foundation in calculus and multivariate calculus is recommended for applicants to this program.

The world is filled with uncertainty and risk—and successful businesses need to quantify these risks. With their mathematical ability, analytic tools, and computer programming skills, actuaries are uniquely qualified to develop solutions to increasingly complex problems and to help quantify and manage risk for businesses in a variety of industries. By using data and models, actuaries have the expertise to determine the probability of certain future events. As an actuary, you develop ways to mitigate the impact of adverse financial circumstances on businesses, governmental agencies, and other organizations.

Program at a Glance

  • On Campus
  • Part-Time or Full-Time Study
  • 43 Credits
  • 21–36 Months to Completion
  • 10 Core Faculty
  • Tuition & Fees Range—Part-Time Study*: $38,960-$42,320

*Based on 2023–2024 Boston University tuition and fees. Merit scholarship may reduce cost.

Prepare for a Rewarding Career as an Actuary

With a master’s degree in Actuarial Science from BU MET, you are well-positioned to work in a variety of traditional and non-traditional actuarial roles. Actuarial skills are valued in any field in which strong abilities in predictive risk analysis, mathematics, and statistics are essential to developing business strategies. Though actuaries work in a variety of areas, they are most notably integral in the insurance industry. Their analytic skills and ability to quantify risk and uncertainty make actuaries invaluable to insurance and financial teams, and essential to health insurance, life insurance, property and casualty insurance (automobile and homeowners insurance), and pension and health consulting firms. Actuaries are also employed by government agencies, accounting firms, banks, and financial services companies.

According to the Society of Actuaries (SoA) and Casualty Actuarial Society (CAS), “Actuaries are the leading professionals in finding ways to manage risk. It takes a combination of strong analytical skills, business knowledge, and understanding of human behavior to manage today’s complex risks facing our society.” As industry practitioners, BU MET’s Actuarial Science faculty not only teach the basic information you need to succeed in an actuarial field, but give you the insight to “think like an actuary” when confronted with a real-world problem. Whether you decide to specialize in health insurance, life insurance, property and casualty insurance, pension and retirement benefits, enterprise risk management, or a less traditional actuarial role, your Actuarial Science master’s degree from Boston University will be valuable to you and to your employer.

Preparation for Professional Examinations

Courses in BU MET’s Actuarial Science master’s degree program are designed to not only help you have a deep understanding of the subject matter, but to assist you in preparing for examinations offered by the SoA and CAS. These examinations are essential in an actuary’s career. Students who follow the SoA exam track will typically work in fields such as life insurance, health insurance, long-term care insurance, and pension plans, all of which use the probability of mortality. Those who take the CAS series of exams will work for companies that develop premiums for risks that are more quantifiable, such as automobile and homeowners insurance.

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Society of Actuaries’ “UCAP-AC” designation

BU is the only university in northern New England that offers a master’s degree in Actuarial Science

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U.S. News & World Report

Actuaries rank #8 in Best Business Jobs for 2023.

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Top 10 Best Jobs of 2021

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“The program provides a great opportunity to learn about the actuarial profession from real, working actuaries on top of the standard learning process for the degree and actuarial exams. Students should take full advantage of having experienced actuaries leading the courses and take any opportunities they can to learn and connect with them.”Martin Chi (MET’12), Actuarial Analyst, Towers Watson

Why Study to be an Actuary at BU MET?

  • Active Learning Environment: BU MET’s Actuarial Science courses ensure that you gain practical skills solving real problems alongside actuaries who work in the industry. A selection of programming and computer courses bring real-world examples into lectures, ensuring that you gain a deep knowledge of data tools and their application.
  • Engaged Faculty: BU MET’s Actuarial Science master’s degree program is taught by SoA- and CAS-credentialed faculty who bring unique expertise and practical insight into the classroom, using actual actuarial problems as examples to supplement course material.
  • Extensive Network: Graduates of the MS in Actuarial Science program benefit from faculty members’ connections to the industry and from a local pool of successful, practicing alumni who work for organizations such as Towers Watson, Blue Cross Blue Shield, John Hancock, Liberty Mutual, and the Massachusetts Department of Insurance.
  • Student Support: Enjoy an exceptional student-to-instructor ratio, ensuring close interaction in the classroom with faculty mentors. The program’s faculty are readily available for advice and support.
  • Valuable Resources: Make use of Boston University’s extensive resources, including the Center for Career Development, Educational Resource Center, Fitness & Recreation Center, IT Help Centers, Mugar Memorial Library, Center for Antiracist Research, Howard Thurman Center for Common Ground, George Sherman Union, and many others.
  • Flexible Schedule: Study at the pace that works for you. Complete the program in as little as one year or take one or two courses per semester and complete the degree over several years—ideal for students who are working full time. Students may begin the program in the fall, spring, or summer semester.
  • Track Record: Learn from the best. BU MET’s master’s degree program in Actuarial Science has been graduating successful actuarial students for over 25 years.

Master the Tools of the Actuarial Science Profession

Metropolitan College’s Department of Actuarial Science will help you acquire the skills you need to become a successful actuary in today’s competitive job market. You will gain both an excellent academic foundation and practical exposure to real-world business environments.

If you have an analytical mind and enjoy working with financial theory, a career as an actuary could be an excellent opportunity for you. Actuarial science uses a combination of statistics, mathematics, economics, finance, data science, and other fields to allow actuaries to make crucial policy decisions in an unpredictable business world. With this specialized knowledge comes enhanced compensation. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median salary for recent actuarial science graduates is higher than the average for other professions. And, the BLS predicts a 24 percent increase in opportunities through 2030.

With a faculty made up of academic actuaries, practicing actuaries, and actuaries who have extensive real-world experience, BU MET’s master’s program in Actuarial Science helps you develop the skills you need to become a credentialed actuary. You will gain a solid academic foundation through specialized courses in actuarial science, data science, finance, and related fields. You will also benefit from being exposed to current business and economic practices while examining the fiscal and ethical dilemmas encountered in the process of business decision-making.

Located in one of the nation’s top financial and insurance centers, Boston University offers an unmatched environment to learn and to find both internships and full-time employment. BU’s Actuarial Science program has the Society of Actuaries’ “UCAP-AC” designation and is the only university in northern New England that offers a master’s degree in Actuarial Science.

You can take courses to receive “Validation by Educational Experience (VEE)” credit from the SoA and CAS. By taking VEE courses, which also count toward your master’s in Actuarial Science degree, you have an advantage when seeking employment.

Graduate with Expertise in Calculating Risk

Metropolitan College’s Actuarial Science master’s degree will equip you with:

  • Detailed knowledge of the mathematical and statistical models that are the core of actuarial calculations. This knowledge includes topics in probability, life contingencies, loss models, and financial mathematics and derivatives. Our program emphasizes precision, accuracy, and a deep understanding of these core actuarial topics.
  • Proficiency in distinguishing and describing many actuarial practice areas, and an understanding of the principles that govern the development of insurance products for those areas, including emerging trends.
  • Computer and data science skills you will need to analyze data using leading edge software tools employed by the insurance and financial industries.

A total of 43 credits is required.

In addition to a computer laboratory course (MET AT 602), students are required to take a minimum of 40 credits at the 500 level or above. All required courses are selected from the following lists of core required courses and core elective courses.

Given the nature of the program, we recommend a foundational knowledge of calculus and multivariate calculus. Applicants who do not have a sufficient math background may be required to complete a prerequisite course in these topics prior to enrollment.

Core Required Courses

(Four courses/15 credits)

Core Electives

A total of seven courses (28 credits) is required, selected from the following course offerings:

Students who have completed any of the above coursework in undergraduate or graduate studies, or who have successfully passed the corresponding professional examinations, may substitute these courses with courses available through other departments at BU MET— most notably the Administrative Sciences and Computer Science departments—as well as BU’s College of Arts & Sciences (CAS) or Questrom School of Business. The Actuarial Science department must approve any such course. Approval must also be obtained from CAS or Questrom. Typically, students are allowed to take two courses from outside of the Actuarial Science department as part of their degree.

Among courses that students have received approval for include:

Directed Studies

Courses in directed studies are offered to students who plan to engage in specialized research topics under the supervision of a faculty advisor.

Actuarial Internships

Internship courses are also offered to students who seek practical applications of actuarial principles in insurance companies, financial institutions, pension consulting firms, and other related fields. While these courses are not intended to create internship opportunities for students, students find value in the regular meetings of the courses in which they discuss the work they are doing outside of the classroom.

To take internship courses, a student must be in their second or later semester in the program, should have successfully completed MET AT 721 and MET AT 731, and must have an overall GPA of at least 3.3.

Second Master’s Degree Option

Second Master’s Degree Option

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Actuarial Science Faculty

Tuition & Financial Assistance

Competitive Tuition

Our part-time rates are substantially lower than those of the traditional, full-time residential programs yet provide access to the same high-quality BU education.

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Comprehensive Financial Assistance

Our services include scholarships, graduate loans, and payment plans.

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Get Started

Please visit the BU MET admissions page for details on how to apply, financial assistance, tuition and fees, requirements for international students, and more.

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