Actuarial Outpost
Go Back   Actuarial Outpost > Exams - Please Limit Discussion to Exam-Related Topics > SoA/CAS Preliminary Exams > Probability
FlashChat Actuarial Discussion Preliminary Exams CAS/SOA Exams Cyberchat Around the World Suggestions

Upload your resume securely at
to be contacted when our jobs meet your skills and objectives.

Probability Old Exam P Forum

Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 10-07-2009, 11:18 PM
cnieves7 cnieves7 is offline
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Mexico city
Studying for P examination
College: Universidad Anahuac Mexico Norte
Favorite beer: Corona
Posts: 38
Blog Entries: 1
Default Actex manuals... good or not?

Hey all of you, just wanted to know your opinion about Actex manuals, what do you think about them?, good choice to study?
Reply With Quote
Old 10-08-2009, 02:12 PM
brandond's Avatar
brandond brandond is offline
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Kansas
Studying for 3/MFE
Posts: 249

I would say get one and check it out. I know people pass the exam just using an ACTEX manual. I had one that I used as a supplementary manual for P but I think I would have been lucky to have passed just using an ACTEX manual.

I did use it for extra practice and as an alternative resource if something wasnt making sense to me. I mainly used the infinite actuary and ASM manual. People swear by both of those.
Reply With Quote
Old 10-08-2009, 10:49 PM
MoProblems_MoMoney's Avatar
MoProblems_MoMoney MoProblems_MoMoney is offline
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: CT
Studying for FETE
Posts: 340

I thought Actex was a lot easier to learn the material. ASM had harder problems to make you perfect everything after you have the basics down.
Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2009, 09:38 PM
mred mred is offline
Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 161

I passed using only Actex. Of course that also means I can't really compare it to the other options. All I can say is I thought the Actex manual was extremely helpful.
Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2009, 10:00 PM
smwentum's Avatar
smwentum smwentum is offline
Join Date: Jul 2009
Studying for software developer
College: college of duh!
Posts: 1,168

Originally Posted by MoProblems_MoMoney View Post
I thought Actex was a lot easier to learn the material. ASM had harder problems to make you perfect everything after you have the basics down.


"You must have long-range goals to keep you from being frustrated by short-range failures." - Charles C. Noble

Originally Posted by Inconceivable View Post
Does he math good?

I need a geek in the streets but a mathlete in the sheets.
Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2009, 11:49 PM
jprep jprep is offline
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Buffalo
Studying for VEEs & FAP
College: University at Buffalo Alumni
Favorite beer: Corona w/ Lime
Posts: 1,559

Originally Posted by MoProblems_MoMoney View Post
I thought Actex was a lot easier to learn the material. ASM had harder problems to make you perfect everything after you have the basics down.
Very well said. Live by these words, and you will pass the exam.

Actex (for Exam P/1) does a very decent job of teaching you the material... but it lacks decent practice exams. It left me feeling well conceptually, but underprepared exam-wise.

After finishing Actex, you may still not be able to do exam problems... this is where ASM comes in. The ASM exams are purposefully difficult. Exams 6 - 20 will make you cry... but they will prepare you for the exam difficulty.

Here were my study materials:

1.) Read through all of Actex over the month of July. Did not attempt practice exams.

2.) After visiting family for the month of August (no studying), got back into studying by doing Dr. O's practice problems posted in this subforum. They were so hard at the time... but I got through all the problems in 6 days.

3.) Attempted the 7 Actex practice exams and the 4 free TIA exams. The Actex exams are just a re-showing of the SOA 142, and as such were not too helpful. I did extremely well on these 11 exams, despite being so inadequately prepared by Actex. Why? Because Dr. O's practice problems were so insane that it built up my abilities. Don't get me wrong - there were some questions from Dr. O. that I just couldn't understand when looking at the solutions.

4.) Ordered Dr. O's ASM manual by same-day delivery. Admittedly, I did not look at the "learn the material" sections. I only used the manual for the practice exams.

Once you've gotten through Actex's 10 chapters, take a look on this forum for old posts about ASM exams (do a search on ASM exams in this forum), and see others' stories to compare your progress.

There you have it... 1.) Actex 2.) Dr. O's free problems 3.) Actex & TIA exams 4.) ASM exams.

I plan to follow a similar path for exam FM, except I'm using TIA instead of Actex. Just wanted to try TIA. Actex is great for you right now, I recommend it. Good luck!
P FM MFE MLC C VEE Stats CorpFinance Econ FAP

Originally Posted by campbell View Post
Originally Posted by Aluan View Post
You sound way too excited about studying for 7.

A bit of studying will fix that, though.
Originally Posted by MyKenk View Post
Nope. 7 is the must pass of all must passes next spring. Can leave absolutely nothing to chance. Study schedule starts on November 15th. Is it nuts? Probably. Will I pass? Definitely. Will it be worth it? Of course.
Originally Posted by MyKenk's blog
A bit of an early start for a second sitting, but this exam is a must pass, and there's no such thing as too much studying for a must pass
Reply With Quote
Old 11-21-2009, 05:25 AM
blueswan7 blueswan7 is offline
Join Date: Nov 2009
College: SMU
Posts: 2
Default Actex section 4

Why is it that in the 2009 P/1 actex manual , the problems in section 4 r.vs look way different than the material and examples that were covered in that section. I have been cross-referencing with the Probability for Risk Management textbook and found that some of the questions needed a little more in depth explanation in order for one to be able not only to solve the questions but also to understand the underlying concepts.

Last edited by blueswan7; 11-21-2009 at 05:29 AM..
Reply With Quote
Old 11-22-2009, 03:29 AM
DanielSong39 DanielSong39 is offline
Join Date: Sep 2009
College: Caltech, Class of 2000
Posts: 6,753

I used a probability textbook to learn the material and the manual to review what I had already learned.

The Actex manual had several hundred practice problems, and they were at least somewhat similar to actual exam problems. The practice exams were actually considerably more difficult than the actual exam - if you're scoring in the mid teens on them, I'd give you a 50-50 shot of passing the actual exam.

Now if you want a book with really hard problems, try the Pitman Probability textbook. Those problems will literally make you cry.
Reply With Quote

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 02:15 AM.

Powered by vBulletin®
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
*PLEASE NOTE: Posts are not checked for accuracy, and do not
represent the views of the Actuarial Outpost or its sponsors.
Page generated in 0.45343 seconds with 11 queries