SOA Survey Finds Opposition to University Accreditation Programs
The decision came after a lengthy exploration and deliberation process. The Board reviewed this issue in detail over a nearly 18 month period. In addition to discussions at Board meetings, the SOA had hosted focus groups in three North American cities, collected nearly 40 comments as feedback through the Speaking of Actuaries blog and conducted an online survey of a random sample of 12,000 members and 8,500 candidates to understand their views of the university accreditation programs. We also solicited the opinions of the SOA Employers Council, which includes representatives of many of the largest employers of actuaries. In addition, the SOA had a task force that met on a number of occasions with leadership of the CIA to discuss the two organizations’ relationship and the CIA’s university accreditation program. CIA leaders were also invited to share their perspective on university accreditation with the SOA Board at the March 2013 SOA Board meeting. In addition to these many discussions, the Board also reviewed information on the UAP program provided by the CIA, reviews conducted by the SOA’s education organization, and an assessment of the alignment between the UAP concept and the SOA’s strategic plan. All these components helped inform the SOA Board of Directors’ final decision.
The SOA values and has deep respect for the CIA as our closest global education partner and understands their strong commitment to the University Accreditation Program. However, we ultimately decided that accepting course work under the UAP for exam credits was not in the best interests of the SOA at this time and was not something our members, candidates, or actuarial employers want the SOA to do. We thank everyone who provided their perspectives throughout the deliberation and decision-making process, including the members and candidates who completed the online survey. The attached summary of the online survey results provides additional information on their views.
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