Solved – What books are good for exam p for actuarial science

Hello I'm going to be a sophomore in college and planning on taking exam P for actuarial science. One of my weakest topic is probability. What "entry level" book would you recommend before I start studying exam P material.

I've included a copy of they syllabus, taken from the Society of Actuaries website:

  1. General Probability
    • Set functions including set notation and basic elements of probability
    • Mutually exclusive events
    • Addition and multiplication rules
    • Independence of events
    • Combinatorial probability
    • Conditional probability
    • Bayes Theorem / Law of total probability
  2. Random Variables with univariate probability distributions (including binomial, negative
    binomial, geometric, hypergeometric, Poisson, uniform, exponential, gamma, normal,
    and mixed)
    • Probability functions and probability density functions
    • Cumulative distribution functions
    • Sums of Independent Random Variables (Poisson and normal)
    • Mode, median, percentiles, and moments
    • Variance and measures of dispersion (including coefficient of variation)
    • Moment generating functions
    • Transformations
  3. Random Variables with multivariate probability distributions (including the bivariate
    • Joint probability functions and joint probability density functions
    • Joint cumulative distribution functions
    • Central Limit Theorem
    • Conditional and marginal probability distributions
    • Moments for joint, conditional, and marginal probability distributions
    • Joint moment generating functions
    • Variance and measures of dispersion for conditional and marginal probability
    • Covariance and correlation coefficients
    • Transformations and order statistics
    • Probabilities and moments for linear combinations of independent random -variables

Exam P is entry level probability, so you can't get much more basic than that. The SOA syllabus has a list of suggested texts, all of which are good. Older textbooks are just as good as new ones, without the added expense.

Depending on your style of learning, if you just want a quick overview, the Schaum's "Introduction to Probability and Statistics" by Seymour Lipschutz is good, or anything else in the Schaum's series you can find at your local library. This is not enough to prepare you for passing the exam, however.

The syllabus textbooks are all good, and for all intents and purposes equivalent in material they cover. Whichever one is "best" depends on your own particular learning style.

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