Digital Manuals are now Easier to Access & have More Features...
Digital Manuals can now be accessed from any device, online or off-line. Just visit the My Account/My Learning Tools section of the ACTEX|Mad River Books website to begin studying! Our new eReader lets you write and print notes, comments & annotations as well as underline, cross out, and highlight text.
Terms & Conditions:
- Accessible through your ACTEX | Mad River Books account/web browser, offline via a FREE desktop player & online or offline via a mobile application
- Compatile with PC, mac, Android or iPhone
- License valid for 1 Year
- One User per license allowed; no transfers, exchanges or returns. (Sharing and/or resale is prohibited)
- No Printing
- Access to content on up to four devices
- Use off-line for up to 5 days at a time
- NO RETURNS
Resale, sharing or any other violation of copyright is not allowed. Copyright infringement is a violation of the SOA Code of Professional Conduct and can result in discipline procedures.
About the Study Package
Important, Please Read
MANY HOURS and DOLLARS went into the development of this study package. We respectfully ask that you respect its copyright protection.
ACTEX / The Edge FAP Study Guide is the only study guide for students wishing to have an accompanying study aid for the entire FAP course. It is a perfect fit for students who want to SIGNIFICANTLY cut down the amount of course reading and note-taking/exam preparation time, while also focusing on enhanced comprehension (i.e., we've tackled the heavy lifting a student woud normally endure while perparing for the course.)
The biggest obstacle we hear that students find with the FAP course is moving through the material in a timely manner. Time and time again, we hear that what could feasibly be a six-month process often finds itself elongated into a two- or three-year headache! One of our primary goals as authors and prior FAP students is to relieve this headache and provide a tool that gives both the means and the motivation to sharpen your focus on completing this piece of the accreditation process as quickly and efficiently as possible, and move on towards to ultimate completion of your Associateships and Fellowship. You owe it to yourself to see this great manual we’ve put together with your success in mind!
A good tool is designed to enable the user to complete the task at hand effectively and efficiently. For example, you can bang a nail into a piece of wood using the handle of a screw driver. However, doing so will most likely require the exertion of more energy, more time being exhausted and the end result of the process may be that the nail bended on the way in, and the process has to be redone. Redoing the project requires even more time and energy.
A good study guide is analogous to a good tool. Without the use of a good study guide you can get the job done but it will most likely require more energy, more time and may result in the higher likelihood of the test having to be retaken. A good study guide is designed to cut down both the time and energy needed to pass a test, and to also increase the student’s likelihood of passing the test on the first attempt. The Edge / ACTEX FAP Study Package was designed with this mindset.
Further, the Interim and Final Assessments involve the submission of written responses. However, unlike the written Fellowship exams, these assessments are open-book. Therefore, the testing format is somewhat of a transition from the multiple choice exams to the written Fellowship exams. The Edge / ACTEX FAP Study Package reflects the techniques the authors learned and used to pass the written exams with high marks. Exam strategy makes a difference!
Students receive both a hardcopy version and read-only electronic version of the package
Provisions and features regarding Electronic Access to The ACTEX / The Edge FAP Study Package:
- Electronic access is available on mutliple devices
Students can now access an electronic copy of the study guide on their smart phone or tablet. This is perfect for students who want the ease of accessibility while traveling / commuting and do not want to bring the hardcopy with them.
- Access will be provided for one year commencing with the date of purchase.
- Students will be able to navigate the electronic version of the study guide, and search key words.
This feature will be helpful as you prepare your Interim and Final Assessment responses. Having online access to the study guide (e.g., to the Detailed Summary sections and Compressed Summary sections) will enable the student to locate reference points in the study guide much more efficiently than having to go through hundreds and hundreds of pages manually.
Comments regarding the 5th Edition of this study package
As instructors, we do not have access to the same website as our students that are actively working within the FAP environment. We access the SOA’s continuing education version of the course, which we understand to be a mirror image of the original course, but we have no means of certifying that fact. However, there are a couple of instances of differences of which you should be aware when using our materials:
- We do not have access to the End-of-Module Assignments nor the Interim / Final Assessments
- We do not have access to the End-of-Module Tests
The following textbook editions are a part of the SOA’s current version of the FAP course:
- Understanding Actuarial Practice (Klugman et al, 2012)
- Understanding Actuarial Management: The Actuarial Control Cycle (Bellis et al, 2nd edition, 2010)
- Introduction to Ratemaking and Loss Reserving for Property and Casualty Insurance (Brown & Lennox, 4th edition, 2015)
- Corporate Value of Enterprise Risk Management: The Next Step in Business Management (Segal, 2011)
The 5th Edition of the ACTEX / The Edge FAP Study Package reflects all of the text editions listed above plus any other changes made by the SOA to the FAP course through December 31, 2016.
The unique design of our study package
The structure of The ACTEX/ The Edge FAP Study Package is delivered in the sections as described below:
The syllabus encompasses a tremendous amount of material consisting of module screens, online readings, as well as textbook readings. Therefore, we designed this section of the study guide using Fellowship exam strategy techniques to pare down what we believe to be the ket information into something much more manageable while still retaining key informational content.
The Detailed Summary sections summarize material from the module screens, online readings and textbook readings. While they were designed to SIGNIFICANTLY cut down the amount of note taking / exam preparation time, they still retain the necessary comprehension component of the Interim and Final Assessments’ objectives. However, even our Detailed Summary sections are still enormous. Compiling a comparable set of condensed, information-rich notes to be available as a reference guide while completing the Interim and Final Assessments would take the student a considerable amount of time to develop. This section of the study package will save the student a tremendous amount of time and energy while still retaining key syllabus content.
These are uniquely organized, high-level summaries of information from the Detailed Summary sections consisting of the following sections:
- Learning objectives
- Key concepts
These sections further compress the syllabus into an even more manageable size so that the student can read the material and reread the material prior to downloading the Interim and Final Assessments without over-burdening themselves.
We anticipate that this is the section the student will most often refer to when completing the Interim and Final Assessments. However, as you read the Compressed Summaries, we suggest you go back to the Detailed Summary sections when you come across an underlying concept that you do not understand. Like the Detailed Summary sections, the Compressed Summary sections will significantly cut down the amount of time and energy the student would spend drafting and organizing a comparable set of reference notes to be utilized while completing the Interim and Final Assessments. It has also been structured to help the student pass the Interim and Final Assessments on the first attempt.
Sample Interim Assessment
The study package includes a sample Interim Assessment. Our sample assessment questions were designed to draw out a deeper understanding of the material, cover a broad area of the material, and also show a step-by-step process that we would use for developing responses in the Interim Assessment.
We strongly recommend that you go through the slides and use the guide at the same time. It would be in your best interest to read the slides and not skip them.
This study package contains comments regarding what we feel is likely to be tested or not to be tested. Alternatively, the Detailed Summary sections may only include material we believe is likely to be tested. Any explicit comments or implicit suggestions are solely our opinions. It is the student’s responsibility to decide whether or not to study material that we believe is not likely to be tested. Further, although care has been taken to ensure all problems and their underlying methodologies provided in this study guide are correct, and the authors are not aware or any errors or omissions within this study guide, it is the student’s responsibility to ensure they are aware of the proper treatment of any math or non-math related topic.
About the authors
Ryan is also the author of The Edge study guides for the following Fellowship exams:
- Retirement Design and Accounting (D&A) exam
- Retirement Investment and Risk Management (IRM) exam, and
- Funding and Regulation (FR) exam
Ryan has been developing study materials to help students pass actuarial exams since 2002. The Edge study materials have received extremely positive feedback from students since its inception.
In addition to developing study materials, Ryan is a pension consulting actuary with roughly 20 years of experience helping medium to large organizations solve funding (both in-distress / bankruptcy and non-distress situations), pension accounting, stock-option pricing / modeling and accounting, asset liability management / risk management, mergers and acquisitions, plan design, and HR-related issues.
Unlike Kevin and Tom, who attained their FSAs in their mid-20s, Ryan did not begin his actuarial career until 25. After narrowing down an effective exam strategy Ryan virtually passed every exam on his first attempt and completed both his FSA and EA within six years of entering the actuarial field.
Kevin teamed up with Ryan years ago when he developed an innovative method to help students memorize material while preparing for the large written retirement fellowship exams. In addition, Kevin gave exam preparation seminars for the retirement fellowship exams for several years, worked as a pension consulting actuary for nearly seven years, and has been working as a portfolio manager for seven years.
In addition to traditional pension funding, design, and accounting experience, he also has significant experience consulting to plan sponsors on risk management and managing pension investments in a liability-driven framework. Kevin attained both the FSA and EA credentials at the age of 25 and attributes his success in large part to developing time-saving study strategies while studying for each exam.
Tom is the latest partner to Kevin and Ryan in the development of The Edge /ACTEX FAP Study Package. He assisted with the development of the study material for modules 6, 7, and 8, making the study package a fully comprehensive study guide for the entire FAP course.
Tom has spent a number of years in the pension consulting industry, working with industry-leading Fortune 100 clients in developing innovative solutions to their ever-evolving retirement program challenges. He now works with a London-based financial technology company providing defined benefit pension risk analytic software to users specializing in actuarial consulting, investment consulting, and asset management. He manages and consults on the technology relationships established with large and complex firms in North America.
Feel free to contact us with any comments or questions: