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Universities and Students

Actuarial career journey

Congratulations on choosing Actuarial Science
as your career path!

Actuarial Science is renowned for its rewarding opportunities, providing competitive pay and bonuses that extend throughout your career. Actuaries proudly boast some of the highest graduate salaries in various industries. As an actuary, you’ll engage in practical calculations and offer solutions to complex financial issues. Few professions offer ongoing learning and an opportunity to make an impact on society. The opportunity for mental stimulation and recognition serves as a powerful motivation for pursuing a career as an actuary.

What makes the actuarial profession great:

Now that you understand the reasoning behind choosing to be an Actuary, let us tell you about what awaits you in this course.

In order to become an actuary, you must pass or be exempted from a series of exams administered by the Actuarial Society of South Africa (ASSA). Multiple South African universities offer actuarial courses that allow students to earn exemptions from certain exams.  Presently, there are Seven (7) ASSA-accredited universities where one can obtain an Actuarial Science degree. Those are the:

Actuarial exemptions

Exemptions are actuarial exams that can be taken and successfully completed by actuarial students during their time at university.  They are a crucial part of an Actuarial Science student. Passing exemptions at university means one is exempted by ASSA from writing these exams. Exemptions for the professional actuarial exams are not granted automatically. They are awarded only to students who have excelled in both their overall performance and the specific university courses. Actuarial Exemptions are important because they significantly speed up the student’s advancement in becoming a fully certified actuary. Therefore, by obtaining exemptions, actuarial students can not only reduce the burden of exams (after completing a degree) but also dedicate their time to important aspects of professional growth.

Click here to learn more about actuarial exemptions offered by each of the ASSA-Accredited universities.

Here is a visual roadmap of how to become a qualified Actuary.

Life happens, and the field of Actuarial Science is no exception. SAADP exists for this reason. Our duty is to support your academic achievement despite any challenges life may present. In an instance where one is unable to continue with Actuarial Science, it is easy to transition to other related courses. These include:

SAADP affiliated universities

Currently, Wits, UP, and UCT are the only participating universities. To be considered for SAADP support programmes, students must be studying at one of the SAADP affiliated universities. Students from the not yet affiliated universities are eligible to apply, but they must have applied and been accepted to study Actuarial Science at one of the affiliated universities. Nevertheless, all ASSA-accredited universities will soon be part of SAADP.

Useful Links​

The wrap-around support programmes

Students who come from historically marginalized backgrounds frequently face challenges while attending university for a variety of reasons. The most prevalent reasons for poor academic performance appear to be differences in learning styles, difficulty concentrating on tasks, and social challenges.

Academic support

Students who come from historically marginalized backgrounds frequently face challenges while attending university for a variety of reasons. The most prevalent reasons for poor academic performance appear to be differences in learning styles, difficulty concentrating on tasks, and social challenges.

01

Tutorials

Extension tutorials are additional to the regular curricula and are offered in the professional courses (gate-keeper courses).

02

Exam preparation

To provide students with useful tools and abilities to address exam questions from various viewpoints.

03

Learning styles

To help every student comprehend, value, and adopt their unique learning style and use it to their advantage.

04

Study techniques

To provide students with valuable resources and techniques for successful studying and demonstrate ways they can have more control over their own education.

05

Critical thinking skills

Students are provided with abilities for critical thinking, cognitive growth, creative thinking, and open-mindedness.

06

Goal setting techniques

The ability to set goals helps students concentrate on their endeavors, manage their time effectively, and improve their likelihood of reaching their goals.

Psychosocial support

Programme Managers in each university promote wellness and embrace campus cultures that prioritize wellbeing as a value in order to support students. We believe that students’ well-being can help increase academic performance, student retention in the programme, and increase the progression rate. Students who have a stronger sense of well-being tend to display higher motivation levels, increased self-esteem, and greater engagement and achievement.

01

Counselling

Students receive professional counselling from a skilled Programme Manager. They can discuss problems and issues they are experiencing in their lives with confidentiality.

02

Crisis reporting

Programme Managers play a significant role in supporting student learning, wellness, and development. Regardless of whether it is face-to-face or virtual, our Programme Managers are available to assist students during difficult times such as the death of a family member, encountering racial injustice, and other challenging circumstances

03

Walk-in advisory

Our students are welcome to drop by the Programme Manager's office at any time to inquire about academic, social, personal, or professional development.

Work-readiness support workshops

Our work readiness workshops help senior students prepare for the world-of-work and excel in a new job. We collaborate with professionals in the field to provide employability skills training for senior students to ready them for the workforce.
We partner with industry experts to offer employability skills training to prepare senior students for the world of work. The workshops cover essential subjects like personal branding, personal finance handling, efficient communication, CV writing, interview skills, and time management. The workshops also aid students in cultivating productive work ethics/habits that contribute to their continued success.

Vacation work programme

Vacation work offers chances for senior students to gain a deeper understanding of the actuarial business world and enhance their communication abilities.

We collaborate with corporates that provide job shadowing opportunities for our senior actuarial students.

Students can participate in workshops and seminars that provide them with the necessary tools and skills to transition from campus life to the workforce.

Financial support

SAADP raises funds independently from private and public sectors to provide financial assistance to Actuarial Science students in their 1st, 2nd, 3rd, or honours year who are in need of financial support. Students are put through a rigorous selection process to qualify for financial assistance.


Students from universities not affiliated with SAADP can apply, but they need to have already applied and been admitted pursuing Actuarial Science at an affiliate university. The package includes:

Student engagement
programme

SAADP organizes activation sessions at universities to inform students about its presence. Non-SAADP students who meet the eligibility requirements engage with SAADP officials and students to gain understanding of the available support programmes and how they can participate. To participate in the programme, enquire with an SAADP office on campus.

University of the Witwatersrand

University of Pretoria

University of Cape Town