2161 Mathematicians, statisticians and actuaries

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Lead statement

Mathematicians and statisticians research mathematical or statistical theories, and develop and apply mathematical or statistical techniques for solving problems in such fields as science, engineering, business and social science. Actuaries apply mathematics, statistics, probability and risk theory to assess potential financial impacts of future events. Mathematicians, statisticians and actuaries are employed by universities, governments, bank and trust companies, insurance companies, pension benefit consulting firms, professional associations, and science and engineering consulting firms.

Example Titles

  • actuary
  • biostatistician
  • consulting actuary
  • demographer
  • insurance actuary
  • mathematician
  • statistical analyst
  • statistician

Main duties

  • Mathematicians, statisticians and actuaries perform some or all of the following duties:
    • Mathematicians conduct research to extend mathematical knowledge in traditional areas of mathematics such as algebra, geometry, probability and logic and apply mathematical techniques to the solution of problems in scientific fields such as physical science, engineering, computer science or other fields such as operations research, business or management.
    • Statisticians conduct research into the mathematical basis of the science of statistics, develop statistical methodology and advise on the practical application of statistical methodology. They also apply statistical theory and methods to provide information in scientific and other fields such as biological and agricultural science, business and economics, physical sciences and engineering, and the social sciences.
    • Actuaries apply mathematical models to forecast and calculate the probable future costs of insurance and pension benefits. They design life, health, and property insurance policies, and calculate premiums, contributions and benefits for insurance policies, and pension and superannuation plans. They may assist investment fund managers in portfolio asset allocation decisions and risk management. They also use these techniques to provide legal evidence on the value of future earnings.

Employment requirements

  • Mathematicians and statisticians usually require a graduate degree in mathematics or statistics.
  • Actuaries usually require post-secondary education in actuarial science, mathematics, statistics, economics, commerce or business administration.
  • Actuaries are conferred fellowships through the Canadian Institute of Actuaries upon successful completion of professional examinations and Three years of work experience in the actuarial field as an actuarial assistant or in a related position.

Additional information

  • With experience, actuaries may progress to managerial positions in consulting, insurance and finance. They may also be self-employed.


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