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Sample Actuarial Problems

Apply your math skills to actuarial exam questions.

Actuaries earn professional credentials by passing a series of examinations. This online exam is designed to give you an idea of the types of questions you might encounter on the preliminary actuarial examinations administered by the Casualty Actuarial Society and Society of Actuaries. The sample problems are actual questions from prior exams, but they do not cover all the topics or all levels of difficulty.

Answer the five multiple choice questions below, then click submit to see your results.


An urn contains 10 balls: 4 red and 6 blue. A second urn contains 16 red balls and an unknown number of blue balls. A single ball is drawn from each urn. The probability that both balls are the same color is 0.44.

Calculate the number of blue balls in the second urn.


A blood test indicates the presence of a particular disease 95% of the time when the disease is actually present. The same test indicates the presence of the disease 0.5% of the time when the disease is not present. One percent of the population actually has the disease. Calculate the probability that a person has the disease given that the test indicates the presence of the disease.


Let T1 be the time between a car accident and reporting a claim to the insurance company. Let T2 be the time between the report of the claim and payment of the claim. The joint density function of T1 and T2, f(t1, t2), is constant over the region 0 < t1 < 6, 0< t2 < 6, t1 + t2 < 10, and zero otherwise. Determine E[T1 + T2], the expected time between a car accident and payment of the claim.


The stock prices of two companies at the end of any given year are modeled with random variables X and Y that follow a distribution with joint density function

What is the conditional variance of Y given that X = x ?


The future lifetimes (in months) of two components of a machine have the following joint density function:

What is the probability that both components are still functioning 20 months from now?