• Find a bachelor's degree




    Bachelors Degree Center is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

best online actuary degrees

An online actu­ar­i­al sci­ence degree is an excel­lent choice for indi­vid­u­als who love to work with sta­tis­tics and large amounts of data. It is for those who like to find pat­terns and fig­ure out why they exist and how that infor­ma­tion can be used to iden­ti­fy spe­cif­ic outcomes. 

Orig­i­nal­ly Pub­lished: July 2023
Revised: Jan­u­ary 2024

Stu­dents who enjoy this kind of work can find jobs in finan­cial and insur­ance fields where iden­ti­fy­ing var­i­ous types of risk is vital to oper­at­ing a suc­cess­ful busi­ness. With this type of degree, you can work with both under­writ­ers as well as insur­ance agents.

Enrolling in an online actu­ar­i­al sci­ence degree pro­gram allows you to work in what­ev­er capac­i­ty is need­ed to sup­port your fam­i­ly. If you are already work­ing in a finan­cial or insur­ance-relat­ed career, you will be able to con­tin­ue work­ing and gain­ing expe­ri­ence that will allow you to accept new oppor­tu­ni­ties for advance­ment as they come along. 

Online degree pro­grams offer the same qual­i­ty edu­ca­tion, you would receive if you had attend­ed in a class­room. With less cost, online also requires less finan­cial aid.

Methodology: Ranking the Best Online Actuarial Science Degree Programs

Stu­dents inter­est­ed in an online actu­ary degree also want their degree to pay off (and to pay off their finan­cial aid), so the Bachelor’s Degree Cen­ter rank­ing of the best online actu­ar­i­al sci­ence bachelor’s pro­grams fea­tures only accred­it­ed, rep­utable schools. Pro­grams are ranked accord­ing to cost, grad­u­ate salary, and stu­dent reviews, using data from IPEDS and Niche.

1. Indiana University

Indi­ana Uni­ver­si­ty offers a BS in Actu­ar­i­al Sci­ence that ranks among the nation’s best actu­ar­i­al sci­ence degree programs. 

This 120-semes­ter unit degree pre­pares stu­dents for careers as a data sci­en­tist, a sta­tis­ti­cian, an actu­ary, or a math­e­mat­i­cal mod­el­er, among oth­ers. Core class­es for this degree include: 

  • Real-analy­sis
  • Lin­ear Algebra
  • The Bridge to Abstract Mathematics
  • Finan­cial Mathematics
  • Equi­ty and Fixed-income Investments
  • Ele­ments of Sta­tis­ti­cal Techniques
  • Sta­tis­ti­cal Modeling

Indi­ana Uni­ver­si­ty is a mul­ti-cam­pus high­er learn­ing insti­tu­tion found­ed in the 1820s. IU is rec­og­nized to also be a space-grant uni­ver­si­ty with a stu­dent enroll­ment across the uni­ver­si­ty that exceeds 110,000 stu­dents each year.

What We Like: IU main­tains two pri­ma­ry cam­pus­es plus sev­en oth­er region­al aca­d­e­m­ic cen­ters across the state of Indi­ana and has a lengthy list of notable alumni.

Degree: BS in Actu­ar­i­al Science

2. Texas Tech University

Texas Tech Uni­ver­si­ty offers a Bach­e­lor of Gen­er­al Stud­ies (BGS) in Math­e­mat­ics with an aca­d­e­m­ic spe­cial­iza­tion or con­cen­tra­tion in Actu­ar­i­al Sci­ence that is rec­og­nized among the best actu­ar­i­al sci­ence degree pro­grams in the state’s tech uni­ver­si­ty system. 

Class­es for the degree include: 

  • Sta­tis­ti­cal Methods
  • Finan­cial Mathematics
  • Risk Man­age­ment
  • High­er Math for Engineers/Scientists I & II
  • Ele­men­tary Geometry
  • Ele­ments of Finite Math
  • Math­e­mat­i­cal Sta­tis­tics for Engi­neers and Scientists

Texas Tech Uni­ver­si­ty was found­ed in the 1920s as a tech school, which became a uni­ver­si­ty in 1969. More than 39,400 under­grad­u­ate and post­grad­u­ate stu­dents attend class­es online and on the school’s main Lub­bock campus.

What We Like: Texas Tech University’s stu­dents play in the Big 12 con­fer­ence as the Red Raiders, with the women’s bas­ket­ball team win­ning the Divi­sion 1 b‑ball tour­na­ment in 1993.

Degree: Bach­e­lor of Gen­er­al Stud­ies in Math­e­mat­ics — Actu­ar­i­al Sci­ence concentration

3. University of Massachusetts Lowell

The Uni­ver­si­ty of Mass­a­chu­setts Low­ell offers a BS in Applied Math­e­mat­ics that is con­sid­ered Mass­a­chu­setts’ most ver­sa­tile and best online actu­ar­i­al pro­gram avail­able in the Bay State. 

UMass Lowell’s under­grad­u­ate actu­ar­i­al degree offers a gen­er­ous trans­fer cred­it pol­i­cy of up to 90 cred­its, offer­ing an accel­er­at­ed path that can be com­plet­ed in as few 12 months for qual­i­fied actu­ar­i­al sci­ence majors. This UMass is designed to be flex­i­ble enough for busy par­ents and work­ing learners.

The Uni­ver­si­ty of Mass­a­chu­setts (UML) was found­ed as a teacher’s col­lege in west­ern Mass­a­chu­setts in 1894. The uni­ver­si­ty main­tains two pri­ma­ry cam­pus­es in the Mer­ri­mack Val­ley in Low­ell and Haver­hill. More than 18,150 stu­dents attend class­es online and on the school’s dual campuses.

What We Like: The Uni­ver­si­ty of Mass­a­chu­setts’ Low­ell facil­i­ty is com­prised of six colleges/schools offer­ing pro­grams in edu­ca­tion, fine arts, sci­ence, engi­neer­ing, busi­ness, and health sciences.

Degree: BS in Applied Mathematics

4. Thomas Edison State University

Thomas Edi­son State Uni­ver­si­ty offers a BA in Math­e­mat­ics that ranks among the most inno­v­a­tive and best online actu­ar­i­al pro­grams in the greater NJ/NY/PA urban areas. 

Stu­dents enrolled in Thomas Edi­son State University’s actu­ar­i­al sci­ence pro­gram and math must com­plete class­es in: 

  • Quan­ti­ta­tive Literacy
  • Num­ber Theory
  • Non-para­met­ric Statistics
  • Dif­fer­en­tial Equations
  • Cryp­tog­ra­phy & Cryptanalysis
  • Math­e­mat­i­cal Logic
  • Risk Man­age­ment
  • Graph The­o­ry
  • Topol­o­gy
  • Matrix Alge­bra

Thomas Edi­son State Uni­ver­si­ty (TESU) is a pub­lic insti­tu­tion of high­er learn­ing that was estab­lished in the ear­ly 1970s. The school’s online plat­form and Tren­ton cam­pus serve more than 17,050 post­grad­u­ate and under­grad­u­ate stu­dents annually.

What We Like: The uni­ver­si­ty is named to hon­or the inven­tor who did most of his pro­fes­sion­al work in New Jersey.

Degree: BA in Mathematics

5. Louisiana State University in Alexandria

Louisiana State Uni­ver­si­ty in Alexan­dria offers a BS in Math­e­mat­ics with an aca­d­e­m­ic track in Actu­ar­i­al Sci­ence which is one of Louisiana’s most inno­v­a­tive and best online actu­ar­i­al programs. 

The uni­ver­si­ty’s bachelor’s degree in actu­ar­i­al sci­ence pro­gram pre­pares grads to sit for the first SOA exams and gen­er­ous­ly offers up to 75% of cred­its to be trans­ferred, if eli­gi­ble. Required con­cen­tra­tion class­es include: 

  • Finan­cial Mathematics
  • Busi­ness Finance
  • Prob­a­bil­i­ty
  • Risk Man­age­ment
  • Math­e­mat­i­cal Statistics

Louisiana State Uni­ver­si­ty & Agri­cul­tur­al & Mechan­i­cal Col­lege (LSU A&M) was found­ed as a pub­lic school in 1860 and now oper­ates as the state’s land, sea, and space grant insti­tu­tion of high­er edu­ca­tion with a stu­dent enroll­ment that nears 35,000.

What We Like: Louisiana State Uni­ver­si­ty & Agri­cul­tur­al & Mechan­i­cal College’s vet school is the only vet­eri­nary school in the state.

Degree: BS in Math­e­mat­ics — Actu­ar­i­al Science

6. Maryville University of Saint Louis

Maryville Uni­ver­si­ty of Saint Louis offers a BS in Math­e­mat­ics with an aca­d­e­m­ic empha­sis in data sci­ence that pre­pares grad­u­ates for careers as man­age­ment ana­lysts, actu­ar­ies, sta­tis­ti­cal con­sul­tants, insur­ance under­writ­ers, or data sci­en­tists, to name a few. 

Maryville’s best online actu­ar­i­al pro­grams require the com­ple­tion of a min­i­mum of 128 cred­it units, which are all avail­able online, with an option­al local intern­ship. Bach­e­lor’s degree class­es may include: 

  • Fun­da­men­tal Analysis
  • Opti­miza­tion
  • Finan­cial Math
  • Foun­da­tions of Mathematics

Estab­lished in the 1870s, Maryville Uni­ver­si­ty of Saint Louis is a pri­vate school that serves more than 10,950 post­grad­u­ate and under­grad­u­ate stu­dents on its cam­pus in Town and Coun­try and online plat­form. It is espe­cial­ly known for online edu­ca­tion in busi­ness administration.

What We Like: Maryville Uni­ver­si­ty of Saint Louis was estab­lished by the Soci­ety of the Sacred Heart.

Degree: Math­e­mat­ics, BS, Data Minor

7. Chadron State College

Chadron State Col­lege offers a BS in Math­e­mat­ics with a minor option in applied sta­tis­tics which is rec­og­nized as one of Nebraska’s best online actu­ar­i­al sci­ence programs. 

Actu­ar­i­al sci­ence cours­es for Chadron State’s bac­calau­re­ate degree in math include: 

  • Applied Sta­tis­tics
  • Dis­crete Mathematics
  • The­o­ry of Statistics
  • Sam­pling Techniques
  • Data Analy­sis
  • Prob­a­bil­i­ty and Statistics
  • Spe­cial Top­ics in Math
  • The­o­ry of Numbers
  • Cal­cu­lus I, II, & III
  • plus an intern­ship or inde­pen­dent research project

Found­ed in 1911 in Chadron, Chadron State (CSC) is a mem­ber school of Nebraska’s state col­lege sys­tem. Chadron State oper­ates on a 100% open admis­sion pol­i­cy with a stu­dent enroll­ment that is home to more than 2,950 students.

What We Like: Five build­ings at Chadron State are list­ed on the Nation­al Reg­is­ter of His­toric Places.

Degree: Math­e­mat­ics, BS — minor in Applied Statistics

8. Walsh University

Walsh Uni­ver­si­ty offers one of Michigan’s best online actu­ar­i­al sci­ence pro­grams with its under­grad­u­ate accel­er­at­ed actu­ar­i­al degree designed for work­ing learn­ings in need of flexibility. 

The college’s degree in actu­ar­i­al sci­ence is among Michigan’s most afford­able online bach­e­lor’s (low finan­cial aid). Grad­u­ates of Wal­sh’s bachelor’s degree can enter the work­force as: 

  • Research Ana­lysts
  • Insur­ance Underwriters
  • Busi­ness Consultants
  • Finan­cial Specialists
  • Actu­ar­i­al Analysts
  • Per­son­al Finan­cial Advisors 
  • Invest­ment Strategists

Char­tered in the 1920s, Walsh Uni­ver­si­ty is a mul­ti­ple-cam­pus pri­vate school ded­i­cat­ed to the field of busi­ness. Walsh Col­lege began to pre­pare stu­dents for account­ing careers. Walsh offered its first bac­calau­re­ate-lev­el pro­grams (account­ing and busi­ness admin­is­tra­tion) in the 1970s.

What We Like: Walsh Uni­ver­si­ty oper­ates facil­i­ties in Clin­ton Town­ship, and Macomb Com­mu­ni­ty Col­lege, and St Claire Coun­ty Com­mu­ni­ty College.

Degree: Online BS in Actu­ar­i­al Science

9. Indiana University East

Indi­ana Uni­ver­si­ty East offers a BS in Math­e­mat­ics that is among the most afford­able and best online actu­ar­i­al sci­ence pro­grams in Indi­ana and beyond. Stu­dents enrolled in IUE’s degree must com­plete at least 120 cred­it units to meet Indi­an Uni­ver­si­ty East­’s grad­u­a­tion criteria.

IU East was found­ed in the 1970s as a pub­lic uni­ver­si­ty. The school serves east­ern Indi­ana and west­ern Ohio stu­dents and work­ing learn­ers with sev­er­al cam­pus­es and facil­i­ties. IU East offers more than 55 aca­d­e­m­ic degrees. More than 3,450 stu­dents attend class­es each year offered on the school’s Rich­mond cam­pus and online, vying for degrees and diplo­mas offered by IU East’s sev­en colleges/schools.

What We Like: Indi­ana Uni­ver­si­ty East was first estab­lished to serve online stu­dents as an aca­d­e­m­ic exten­sion cen­ter for Earl­ham Col­lege and then Ball State Uni­ver­si­ty and Pur­due University.

Degree: Math­e­mat­ics, BS

10. Eastern New Mexico University

East­ern New Mex­i­co Uni­ver­si­ty offers two of the best online actu­ar­i­al sci­ence pro­grams avail­able in the edu­ca­tion mar­ket­place in the Gar­den State with its Bach­e­lor of Sci­ence or Bach­e­lor of Arts degree in Math­e­mat­ics with an aca­d­e­m­ic foun­da­tion in Actu­ar­i­al Sci­ence. Required class­es include: 

  • Cal­cu­lus
  • Lin­ear Algebra
  • Mod­ern Algebra
  • Finan­cial Management
  • Real Analy­sis
  • Intu­itive Topology
  • Top­ics in Euclid­ean Geometry
  • Ele­ments of Sta­tis­ti­cal Techniques
  • Dif­fer­en­tial Equations
  • Ele­men­tary Com­pu­ta­tion­al Methods
  • Finan­cial Math
  • Quan­ti­ta­tive Finance
  • Math­e­mat­i­cal Models

East­ern New Mex­i­co Uni­ver­si­ty (ENMU) was found­ed in the 1920s as a pub­lic two-year school. ENMU is not­ed to be a His­pan­ic-serv­ing insti­tu­tion with three cam­pus­es in East­ern New Mex­i­co. East­ern New Mex­i­co University’s sub­ur­ban cam­pus­es and online plat­form serve more than 6,010 students.

What We Like: East­ern New Mex­i­co Uni­ver­si­ty was ini­tial­ly devel­oped as a teacher’s train­ing school by the state’s legislature.

Degree: BA or BS in Math­e­mat­ics — foun­da­tion for Actu­ar­i­al Science

11. Ottawa University

Ottawa Uni­ver­si­ty offers a BA in Math­e­mat­ics with an aca­d­e­m­ic foun­da­tion in Actu­ar­i­al Sci­ence that is ranked as one of the best online actu­ar­i­al sci­ence pro­grams in the state of Kansas for online students. 

Ottawa’s bachelor’s degree in actu­ar­i­al sci­ence pre­pares stu­dents for careers in edu­ca­tion, finance, math, gov­ern­ment, research, com­put­er sci­ence, and actu­ar­i­al sci­ence, to name a few.

Ottawa Uni­ver­si­ty is a Bap­tist high­er learn­ing insti­tu­tion that was estab­lished in the 1860s by mis­sion­ar­ies. The school main­tains sev­er­al cam­pus­es and a dis­tance-learn­ing plat­form that serves more than 600 stu­dents every year.

What We Like: Ottawa oper­ates mul­ti­ple cam­pus­es in these states — Ari­zona, Kansas, and Wisconsin.

Degree: Math­e­mat­ics, BA — Actu­ar­i­al Science

What Is an Actuarial Scientist?

An actu­ar­i­al sci­en­tist is some­one who col­lects and inter­prets large amounts of data to deter­mine the lev­el of risk that is involved in cer­tain types of activ­i­ties or trans­ac­tions. By col­lect­ing and eval­u­at­ing large amounts of data, an actu­ar­i­al sci­en­tist can deter­mine whether or not a spe­cif­ic activ­i­ty will be safe for invest­ment or avoid­ed due to high­er-than-aver­age risks. 

By per­form­ing these types of eval­u­a­tions, actu­ar­ies can uncov­er pat­terns that may be able to be changed so that the risks are low­er and pro­duc­tiv­i­ty is higher.

In the finance and insur­ance indus­try, actu­ar­ies are extreme­ly valu­able. With­out their abil­i­ty to accu­rate­ly inter­pret data, there would be no way to deter­mine the lev­el of poten­tial risk. They can iden­ti­fy ways of mit­i­gat­ing risks so that invest­ments will be more pro­duc­tive and there will be much less room for error when mak­ing deci­sions. Actu­ar­ies can find work in almost any indus­try in which some type of research is performed.

What Is Actuarial Science?

Actu­ar­i­al sci­ence is used to apply com­plex math­e­mat­ics to cre­ate mod­els that rep­re­sent the uncer­tain­ty of any giv­en sit­u­a­tion. Both sta­tis­ti­cal and math­e­mat­i­cal meth­ods are used to eval­u­ate the lev­el of risk involved in cer­tain types of trans­ac­tions. Indi­vid­u­als who work with­in this field must prove they pos­sess the skills that will be need­ed to be pro­fi­cient with­in the field. 

In the past (before the 1980s), most of this work was done by hand. When com­put­ers became more read­i­ly avail­able, the old­er meth­ods asso­ci­at­ed with actu­ar­i­al sci­ence were blend­ed in with the­o­ries that had to do with finance and insurance.

Actu­ar­i­al sci­ence is far-reach­ing in terms of where it is used. Most peo­ple asso­ciate it with insur­ance and finance. In actu­al­i­ty, it is also used in eco­nom­ics, com­put­er sci­ence, man­u­fac­tur­ing, and retail. Because of the mas­sive amounts of infor­ma­tion being used today, actu­ar­i­al sci­en­tists are con­sid­ered one of the fastest-grow­ing and most pop­u­lar professions. 

In addi­tion to being a pop­u­lar choice for stu­dents who excel at math, actu­ar­i­al sci­ence is also good for indi­vid­u­als who love research and try­ing to solve com­plex problems.

In an actu­ar­i­al pro­gram, you’ll learn about finan­cial risk and build your ana­lyt­i­cal skills. Be sure of the school’s admis­sion require­ments, accred­i­ta­tion, tuition rates, and pre­req­ui­sites. Make sure you will have real-world expe­ri­ence and be pre­pared for the actu­ar­i­al exams. Your edu­ca­tion­al expe­ri­ence, cred­it hours, and elec­tives will make online pro­grams as good as on-campus.

Is Actuarial Science a Good Career?

No mat­ter what indus­try you work in, there will always be a need for actu­ar­i­al sci­en­tists. The Bureau of Labor Sta­tis­tics and the Soci­ety of Actu­ar­ies agree that there are far few­er pro­fes­sion­als enter­ing the field than need­ed. The career path to health insur­ance com­pa­nies and oth­er employ­ers is clear.

Using groups of num­bers to iden­ti­fy pat­terns and man­age all types of risks is some­thing not every­one can do. If you find that this is an area you enjoy and are pro­fi­cient in, you may be look­ing at the poten­tial for a very long and lucra­tive career. While the finan­cial and insur­ance fields are the most well-known, many oth­er career fields also uti­lize the ser­vices of actuaries.

If you are look­ing for a career in which you can con­tin­ue to advance and seek new oppor­tu­ni­ties, earn­ing a degree in actu­ar­i­al sci­ence is one of the best choic­es you can make. Not only will you be work­ing in a high­ly chal­leng­ing career, but the oppor­tu­ni­ties for advance­ment will con­tin­ue to present them­selves no mat­ter what indus­try you choose to work in. A grad­u­ate degree can bump those oppor­tu­ni­ties up even further.

By using cut­ting-edge tech­nol­o­gy, actu­ar­ies can han­dle vast amounts of infor­ma­tion, much more than has ever been stud­ied in the past. The more com­plex the prob­lem, the more lucra­tive the job. While this type of work may not be for every­one, for those who like this type of work, the oppor­tu­ni­ties for advance­ment will be endless.

Relat­ed Rankings: