Actuarial Science

Predict the future — without a crystal ball

How will the stock market perform next February? How much will insurance companies pay out in claims next year? With an Actuarial Science degree from Waterloo, you’ll have the answers.

In this program, you'll take courses such as the mathematics of finance, risk theory, and pension mathematics taught by professional actuaries in one of North America’s top actuarial schools.

Meanwhile, adding computer science, arts, and various math electives will give you the combination of technical and communication skills that employers are looking for.

Whether you choose the regular stream or the co-op stream, you'll graduate ready to enter a great job market with great prospects and high starting salaries.

Skip the professional exams

Because the Canadian Institute of Actuaries has accredited Waterloo’s Actuarial Science program, you can be exempted from several of their exams.

Social and academic support

Through the student-run Actuarial Science Club, you can find a mentor, get career advice, or meet new friends over board games and bubble tea.


Waterloo calculator

Focus your studies by adding a specialization in Finance or Predictive Analytics, preparing you for careers in business, insurance, and finance. 

#1First faculty of mathematics in North America

BreifAvailable as a co-op and regular program

CapEarn a Bachelor of Mathematics in Actuarial Science 


Actuarial Science admission requirements

Apply to Mathematics and choose Actuarial Science as your major at the end of first year. Once you've applied, you'll need to complete the Admission Information Form as part of the application process. 

We strongly encourage you to participate in the Canadian Senior Mathematics Contest and/or the Euclid Mathematics Contest to enhance your admissions status.  

To be considered for entrance scholarships in the Faculty of Mathematics, you must write one or both of the contests. If you complete both contests, we'll use the results of the contest in which you performed best.

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First-year Actuarial Science courses

You may also select advanced-stream courses for algebra, calculus, and computer science if you meet the requirements. 

September to December

  • MATH 135 - Algebra 
  • MATH 137 - Calculus 1
  • Choose one of:
    • CS 115 - Introduction to Computer Science 1
    • CS 135 - Designing Functional Programs
  • MTHEL 131 - Introduction to Actuarial Practice 
  • One communication skills course

January to April

  • MATH 136 - Linear Algebra 1 
  • MATH 138 - Calculus 2 
  • Choose one of:
    • CS 116 - Introduction to Computer Science 2
    • CS 136 - Algorithm Design and Data Abstraction
  • Two electives*

*Note: You're encouraged to take AFM 101ECON 101, or ECON 102 as first-year electives to satisfy the degree requirements for Actuarial Science.

After first year

The majority of your required courses will be actuarial science courses with additional courses in statistics and mathematics. With your remaining classes, you can choose electives from many of the 100 subject areas at Waterloo.

View a list of all the courses required for your degree.

Sample upper-year courses 

ACTSC 371 – Introduction to Investments
ACTSC 372 – Corporate Finance
ACTSC 453 – Basic Pension Mathematics
ACTSC 455 – Advanced Life Insurance Practice


ClickApply via Mathematics and choose Actuarial Science as your major

math tieOffered by the Faculty of Mathematics

globeWaterloo is an international leader in Mathematics


Co-op = relevant paid work experience

By alternating school terms and paid co-op work terms throughout your degree, you can explore new career areas and types of employers as your career interests evolve.

Sample co-op job titles

  • Finance and accounting analyst
  • Web solutions developer/technical analyst
  • Defined benefits pension administrator
  • Programmer enterprise portfolio management
  • Actuarial analyst
  • Data scientist
  • Insurance associate

Sample co-op employers

  • Parmalat Canada
  • PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP
  • Morneau Shepell
  • Canada Life Financial Corporation
  • Intact Financial Corporation
  • London Life Insurance Company
  • Munich Reinsurance Company

Customize your Bachelor of Mathematics degree in Actuarial Science

You can add additional areas of expertise by including one or more of the minors available to all Waterloo students.

What can you do with a degree in Actuarial Science?

Waterloo Actuarial Science graduates commonly pursue careers in finance, management, education, actuary, risk analysis, and consulting. They often work at insurance companies, financial institutions, schools, and more.

Recent graduates

  • Financial Business Analyst – BMO Bank of Montreal
  • Senior Actuarial Analyst – Sun Life Financial 
  • Advisory Analyst – State Farm Insurance Company
  • Risk Modelling Analyst – TD Securities 
  • Actuarial Associate – Manulife Financial
  • Actuarial Analyst – Munich Reinsurance
  • Head, Operations - Visionary Semiconductor

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