How to create an effective actuarial exam study plan for yourself

Person writing on notepad

In this blog, Chloe Hung, Amazon best-selling author, gives advice and guidance on 5 steps in creating your own effective study plan. 

Do you know that your actuarial exam success is largely determined by how effective your study plan is? How many of you actually spend time crafting an exam study plan that will help you boost your efficiency and productivity?

Many students complain that they do not have enough hours in a day to prepare for their actuarial exams because they have too many activities going on in their social life or at work. Well, I am here to tell you that 24 hours in a day is more than enough for you to prepare for your exams. The reason why you feel like you do not have enough time is because you are not being productive in your exam study plan.

Often we waste most of our time doing non-productive activities during the day. These non-productive activities leave us feeling drained which then makes studying less effective. Here are 5 steps to help you maximise your productivity and create an effective study plan for yourself.

5 steps to maximise your productivity and create an effective study plan:

Step 1: Keep a work log for at least a week. Write down all of your activities and the time spent doing them. This may be time consuming initially but this step is essential to help you get a true picture of what your whole week looks like.

Step 2: Analyse your activities. Separate your activities into productive and non-productive activities. Productive activities are basically high priority activities that require most of your time and attention. For example, attending classes, studying for your exams, working your part-time or full-time job etc. Non-productive activities are low priority activities such as keeping up-to-date with news on your social media feed, checking out that new café in town, watching that new episode from the TV series you’ve been following and so on. Most students will find that they are spending way too much time than they should on non-productive activities in a week.

Step 3: Prioritise all your activities. Preparing for your actuarial exam should be the highest priority item on your list everyday. You need to concentrate most of your time on just a few high-priority activities on a daily basis. I personally spend most of my time on 2 to at most 3 high-priority activities everyday. This is to ensure that I am able to give the focus and attention needed to complete these high-priority activities successfully. 

Step 4: Allocate appropriate amounts of time for both your high priority and low priority items. Preparing for your actuarial exam should take up at least 2 to 3 hours in a day.  Once you’ve factored this in, you’ll have at least 21 to 22 hours in a day left for all your other activities such as sleeping, attending classes, completing your assignments etc. That’s plenty of time left for you to designate.

Step 5: Set deadlines and milestones in your exam study plan to help you stay on track and motivated. Write down when do you plan to complete studying for a particular chapter and place this on a spot that is visible to you in your room or your house. These deadlines will serve as small milestones in your study plan. Once you’ve successfully achieved a milestone, reward yourself with something nice. On the other hand, if you fail to meet a milestone, give yourself more work to do. .

The objective of your study plan is to maximise your exam success. Failing the actuarial exams is a major source of stress for many students. Having an effective and productive study plan will definitely help reduce the stress you are under. It is all about studying smarter and maximising your probability for success.


If you would like to find out more about becoming an actuary, visit our website at https://www.actuaries.org.uk/becoming-actuary