Objectives and competences

The master's degree is structured along the same lines as the most renowned university programmes in actuarial training in Europe and meets the professional requirements of the insurance and finance sectors (insurance, social welfare systems, financial tools and markets, and the assessment and management of associated risks). Therefore it also meets the training demands set out in the EU Solvency II Directive. 

The program consists of 120 credits of face-to-face courses.
An actuary is an expert in financial, demographic and insurance risk assessment, with a solid technical background in mathematics, statistics, economics and law. The master's degree in Financial and Actuarial Sciences provides the multidisciplinary training required to work as an actuary in compliance with international standards. The programme covers the Core Syllabus requirements for actuarial training established by the International Actuarial Association and the Actuarial Association of Europe.

The master's degree is structured along the same lines as the most renowned university programmes in actuarial training in Europe and meets the professional requirements of the insurance and finance sectors (insurance, social welfare systems, financial tools and markets, and the assessment and management of associated risks). Therefore it also meets the training demands set out in the EU Solvency II Directive. 

The course consists of 90 core credits plus 30 credits of face-to-face bridging courses. The bridging courses are subjects from the specialization in Finance and Insurance of the UB bachelor's degree in Business Administration and Management. 
 

Basic information

TypeMaster's degree
Faculty or schoolFaculty of Economics and Business
Branch of knowledge
  • Economic sciences, business administration and management, marketing, commerce, accounting and tourism
  • Mathematics and statistics
Mode of delivery
  • Face-to-face
Credits120
Number of places available40
Length of course2 academic years
Language(s) of instruction90 % Spanish - 10 % English
Approximate price per credit27.67 euros per credit (82 euros for students who are not EU or China nationals and do not currently reside in Spain). Fees for the academic year 2023-2024.
CoordinationMIGUEL ANGEL SANTOLINO PRIETO
E-mailmaster.caf@ub.edu
Course detailsIndicators
Open pre-enrolmentYes
Open enrolmentNo
Lead to doctoral studiesYes
Admission for applicants not holding a degree qualificationNo
Bridging coursesYes

Objectives and competences

Objectives

The master's degree in Financial and Actuarial Sciences is firmly focused on the job market. As such, its main objective is to offer future actuaries high-quality, multidisciplinary training that will equip them for successful national and international careers.

In addition, the solid technical knowledge achieved makes it possible for future graduates to also acquire the appropriate training to start postgraduate studies (doctorate). The master's degree introduces the student to research and stimulates their autonomy in problem solving and decision-making in the fields of insurance and finance.

The program seeks to facilitate student exchange and professional mobility across borders, thanks to compliance with the Core Syllabus requirements.

The program offers a set of subjects that allow the student to deepen, according to their interests, in various areas of knowledge related to the application and interpretation of the techniques and methods used in the professional field of insurance and finance.

Competences

Basic and General Competences 
  • Knowledge forming the basis of original thinking in the development or application of ideas, typically in a research context.
  • Capacity to apply the acquired knowledge to problem-solving in new or relatively unknown environments within broader (or multidisciplinary) contexts related to the field of studies.
  • Capacity to integrate knowledge and tackle the complexity of formulating judgements based on incomplete or limited information, taking due consideration of the social and ethical responsibilities involved in applying knowledge and making judgements.
  • Capacity to communicate knowledge and conclusions and the grounds on which they have been reached to specialist and non-specialist audiences in a clear and unambiguous manner.
  • Learning abilities that facilitate self-directed and independent learning.
  • Capacity for effective public speaking.

     

    Specific competences

  • Capacity to apply mathematical and statistical techniques to actuarial and financial modelling.
  • Capacity to apply probability distribution models related to the behaviour of certain economic, financial and actuarial phenomena.
  • Capacity to analyse, design and assess actuarial and financial products.
  • Capacity to design risk and insurance models using statistical and mathematical tools.
  • Capacity to classify and measure actuarial, financial and investment risks, and to take related decisions.
  • Capacity to understand the specific business, legal and accounting conditions of insurance and financial entities.
  • Capacity to report on the situation of a financial or insurance company and make forecasts about its future, by analysing solvency and calculating capital requirement.
  • Capacity to acquire a thorough overview of actuarial and financial research.
  • Ability to act professionally in the actuarial and financial field, with a considerable degree of independence.
  • Capacity to carry out actuarial and financial calculations using specific software.

Access and admission

Applicant profile and access requirements

Recommended applicant profile

Students should have a solid grounding in economics and finance (graduates in business administration and management, economics or similar studies) and students with training in statistics and mathematics (fundamentally, graduates in statistics, mathematics, physics and engineering).

Good knowledge of computer tools and applications is strongly recommended.

Access requirements and conditions

General requirements
In accordance with Article 16 of Royal Decree 1393/2007, of 29 October, students wishing to be admitted to a university master's degree must hold one of the following qualifications:

  • Official Spanish university degree.

  • A degree issued by a higher education institution within the European Higher Education Area framework that authorizes the holder to access university master's degree courses in the country of issue.

  • A qualification issued by an institution outside the framework of the European Higher Education Area. In this case, applicants must request homologation of the degree to its equivalent official Spanish university qualification or obtain express approval from the University of Barcelona, which will conduct a study of equivalence to ensure that the degree is of a comparable level to an official Spanish university qualification and that it grants access to university master's degree study in the country of issue. Admission shall not, in any case, imply that prior qualifications have been recognized as equivalent to a Spanish master's degree and does not confer recognition for any purposes other than that of admission to the master's degree course.

Specific requirements
The master's degree Coordination Committee appoints a selection committee that assesses, for each specific application, whether the candidate's curriculum is suitable and whether admission is appropriate; whether the applicant needs to take any bridging courses before they are accepted, or whether the application should be rejected.

Considering the training needs of an insurance actuary, in order to take the master's degree in Financial and Actuarial Sciences, knowledge corresponding to the bridging courses Mathematics for Actuaries, Statistics for Actuaries, and Economics, worth a total of 2.5 credits. The content of these subjects will allow the acquisition of the learning objectives established in the Core Syllabus of the European Actuarial Association for the actuarial qualification.
The master's Coordination Commission may ask students who request access to the master's programme to take one or more of these bridging courses if their previous education does not guarantee a minimum level of knowledge. In terms of academic organization, Mathematics for Actuaries and Statistics for Actuaries are taken intensively immediately before the start of teaching. The bridging course in Economics is taken at the same time as the master's degree

Pre-enrolment

Calendar

First period: 1 February - 31 March de 2024.
Notification of resolutions: 15 April.


Second period: 1 April - 30 June 2024.
Notification of resolutions: 15 July.

Notes:

  • Pre-enrolment fee: A pre-enrolment fee of 30,21 euros is charged. Students who apply to more than one master's degree must pay the fee for each pre-enrolment request. Pre-enrolment requests cannot be processed until this fee has been paid.Fees will only be refunded if the master's degree in question is suspended.
  • Reserved places: A maximum of 5% of the new places of the master's degree are reserved for students who meet the general and specific access requirements and accredit the recognition of a degree of disability equal to or greater than 33%.

Required documentation

  • Pre-enrolment application
  • Photocopy of degree certificate or equivalent qualification. In case of admission, foreign degrees that require so should be translated and authenticated through diplomatic channels before completing the enrolment.
  • Selection criteria

    Applications from candidates who meet the general entry requirements (sufficient academic qualifications to take a university master's degree at a Spanish university) will be assessed on the basis of the following criteria, weighted as shown:

    a.Academic record of the previous qualification(s): 40%.
    b.CV and personal statement: 30%.
    c.Certification of an advanced level of English (at least level B1 or equivalent). International students from non-Spanish-speaking countries must certify an advanced level of Spanish or Catalan: 10%.
    d.Certification of previous courses on computer applications and tools: 10%.
    e.Receipt of a grant or other funding prior to the master's degree: 10%.


    If no documentation is submitted for a section, that section will be given zero points.

    Notification

    The body in charge of resolving applications is the master's degree Admissions Committee. This procedure is carried out in the period established in the pre-enrolment calendar. Once the Committee has met and the corresponding resolution has been reached, electronic confirmation is sent. The faculty's Master's and Doctoral Office will contact admitted students to inform them of the steps to take to complete enrolment.

Enrolment

As a general rule, at the UB you will be required to enrol online. Remember that you can lose your place if you do not enrol on the day you have been assigned

Course curriculum

Subjects and course plans

Distribution of credits

Type ECTS
Compulsory 92.5
Optional 17.5
Compulsory placements
Compulsory final project 10
TOTAL 120

List of subjects

Subject Type Language Credits
Specialization: Actuarial and Financial Sciences
Accounting for Insurance Companies Compulsory 1st semester 2.5
Actuarial Mathematical Models and Life Applications Compulsory 2nd semester 5
Actuarial Mathematical Models and Non-Life Applications Compulsory 2nd semester 5
Actuarial Modelling of Public Pension Systems Compulsory 2nd semester 5
Actuarial Statistics Compulsory 1st semester 5
Advanced Financial Instruments: Structured Products Optional 2nd semester 2.5
Advanced Models in Actuarial Mathematics Optional 2nd semester 2.5
Advanced Stochastic Finance Optional 2nd semester 2.5
Business Risk Management Compulsory 1st semester 2.5
Computational Data Analysis in SAS and R Compulsory 1st semester 5
Computational Intelligence in Finance and Insurance Optional 2nd semester 2.5
Empirical Finance Optional 2nd semester 2.5
Final Project Compulsory 2nd semester 10
Financial Econometrics Compulsory 2nd semester 5
Financial Risk Management Compulsory 1st semester 5
Financial Valuation Models Compulsory 1st semester 5
Insurance Market: Elements and Agents Compulsory 1st semester 2.5
Insurance Statistics Compulsory 1st semester 5
International Financial Economics Compulsory 1st semester 5
Mathematical Models for Non-Life Provisions Compulsory 1st semester 2.5
Multivariate Financial Analysis Optional 2nd semester 2.5
Numerical Calculus. Programming Languages Compulsory 1st semester 2.5
Operations with Groups and Disability Optional 2nd semester 2.5
Pension Plans: Integrated Management of Assets and Liabilities Compulsory 1st semester 5
Placement Optional 1st semester
2nd semester
5
Reinsurance Optional 2nd semester 2.5
Risk Modelling Compulsory 2nd semester 5
Risk Quantification Compulsory 1st semester 5
Solvency Compulsory 1st semester 5
Statistical Models Compulsory 1st semester 5
Stochastic Finance Compulsory 2nd semester 5
Strategic Decisions in Finance and Insurance Optional 2nd semester 2.5
Tax, Banking and Financial Markets Law Optional 2nd semester 2.5
Valuation of Finance and Insurance Companies Optional 2nd semester 2.5

Bridging courses

Subject Type Language Credits
Specialization: BC for admission to the Master's Degree in Financial and Actuarial Sciences
Additional Training in Economics Optional 1st semester 2.5
Additional Training in Mathematics for Actuaries Optional 1st semester 2.5
Additional Training in Statistics for Actuaries Optional 1st semester 2.5

Previous years

Placements

Placements in a company or another type of organization are an integral part of university studies, providing first-hand experience of working methodologies in students' chosen professional fields. They offer invaluable practical experience for the transition into work after graduation.



Placements are supervised by tutors and subject to assessment. They are therefore included in the academic record.  There is also an option to complete non-curricular placements of up to 500 hours, which can be extended to 900 hours. For both curricular and non-curricular placements, an educational cooperation agreement is signed between the UB and the company, institution or other organization at which the placement will be carried out.



Institutional information


Career opportunities

What can you work on ?

Actuaries are experts in insurance, public and private pensions, financial tools and markets and risk management and uncertainty quantification. They are therefore highly sought after in the banking sector and by insurance firms, companies with in-house risk management departments, auditors, consultancies and other corporations they need experts with the quantitative skills to carry out risk management tasks.

They also have a series of functions attributed to them by law. Current regulations on insurance, pensions and social welfare place actuaries at the centre of quantitative decision-making, and similar importance derives from the Solvency II Directive, which makes express mention of actuarial functions.

Access to the labour market

Data from the university system in Catalonia

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