Become an Insurance Underwriter

how tobecome an insurance udnerwriter

Have you ever wondered who decides what you pay in auto, health or life insurance? What kind of calculations are made to assess what risks individuals take on a regular basis, and how do those calculations equate to a specific monetary amount?

Insurance underwriters find those answers. They analyze information provided by prospective insurance beneficiaries, contact medical professionals and other specialists to gather supporting information about risks, use statistical analysis and underwriting software to discover recommendations about the data, and finally decide whether to insure a client. These methods also help insurance underwriters decide how much premiums and insurance discounts should cost.

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Insurance underwriter professionals require a diverse range of experience in business, finance, economics, math and particular underwriting software systems. Specific certifications are also preferred among employers. Some professionals choose to enroll in online courses to build experience with insurance underwriting tools and to gain relevant knowledge in related subjects. Moreover, online classes may be easier to fit into a busy schedule, as they often do not require a commute and can be completed at the student's convenience.

Are Online Insurance Underwriter Programs for You?

Here is what you may consider when choosing an online insurance underwriter program:

  • Company prerequisites for insurance underwriter programs vary. However, most employers prefer to hire candidates with either a relevant bachelor's degree or a combination of work experience and computer skills, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics[i].
  • Entry-level insurance underwriter positions ordinarily involve training programs that put workers under the supervision of senior staff members.
  • Employers tend to favor candidates that have gained certifications such as the Associate in Commercial Underwriting designation and the Associate in Personal Insurance designation, which are both offered by The Institutes.
  • The American College of Financial Services also offers certifications that may increase employment opportunities.
  • Before enrolling in online courses, inquire about the skills you will learn and software you will use during your educational experience. Also, research whether the subject matter will prepare you for attaining certifications that will benefit your professional career.

Insurance Underwriter Career Paths and Potential Salaries

Insurance underwriter courses may prepare you to pursue a variety of other professions in risk mitigation and prediction. Research which options may be available using statistics compiled by the BLS.

Insurance Underwriter[i]

Insurance underwriters evaluate the financial risk of covering prospective insurance beneficiaries and analyze information about current clients to decide whether to raise or lower premiums. They use a combination of business skills, computer software tools, mathematical analysis, financial research and economic expertise to perform these tasks.

  • See the BLS for median annual salary information
  • Job growth through 2022: 17 percent (faster than average)
  • Entry-level education: Bachelor's degree


Actuaries make a living by crunching numbers and using financial formulas to predict the likelihood of certain events. They specialize in calculating risks and developing optimal strategies for businesses and individuals seeking to minimize undesirable outcomes. They accomplish this by using a combination of statistical analysis, financial theory and mathematics.

  • See the BLS for median annual salary information
  • Job growth through 2022: 26 percent (much faster than average)
  • Entry-level education: Bachelor's degree

Budget Analysts[iii]

These professionals assist organizations in effectively utilizing their financial assets. They work with program managers, executives and particular departments to analyze and evaluate funding requests, monitor organizational spending, predict future monetary needs and more. They also ensure that budget proposals are precise and operate within the bounds of any relevant laws and regulations. 

  • See the BLS for median annual salary information
  • Job growth through 2022: 6 percent (slower than average)
  • Entry-level education: Bachelor's degree