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Associate of Applied Science (A.A.S.) Degree in Executive Assistant

Majors Overview May 11, 2013

Executive assistant degree program graduates will be prepared for administrative assistant positions in business, medical, or legal environments. Executive assistants are responsible for answering phone calls, organizing files, and scheduling meetings.

A.A.S. Degree in Executive Assistant

By enrolling in an executive assistant program, students get trained in performing complex administrative work including research, database computing or document preparation. They become adept at communication with staff or customers, management of projects, supervision of personnel, provision of administrative support, and running software applications. Schools may offer executive assistant programs as an Associate in Applied Science in Business Technology with a major in executive assistant technology, or as an Associate of Applied Science in Executive Assistant. Admission criteria typically require applicants to hold a general educational development (GED) certificate or a high school diploma.

Program Coursework

The associate degree program curricula delve into office procedures, machine applications, word processing, keyboarding, and computer applications. Students are educated in public speaking, information management, and professional practices. Aspiring executive assistants will study the following course topics in their associate degree program:

•Business correspondence
•Electronic spreadsheets
•Document formatting, proofing, and editing
•Desktop publishing
•Customer service
•Business math

Career Options

Individuals who have earned their associate degree in executive assistant will find employment in different settings. During 2008, ninety percent of assistants and secretaries were employed in service-providing industries, including healthcare, government, and education, while the remaining ten percent were found in construction and manufacturing industries, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS – www.bls.gov). Individuals may obtain the following career titles:

•Administrative coordinator
•Office manager
•Administrative secretary
•Executive assistant

Information on Continuing Education

While employers do not usually require prospective employees to hold certification; executive assistants can improve their job opportunities and showcase their knowledge in the field of office management by being certified. Passing exams offered through the International Association of Administrative Professionals (www.iaap-hq.org) will help eligible candidates acquire the Certified Administrative Professional (CAP) credential.

To qualify for this certification, an individual is required to hold an associate’s degree, in addition to having four years of experience; alternatively, candidates may hold a bachelor’s degree along with two years of relevant work experience. Certification is valid for five years and can be maintained by individuals through completion of continuing education.

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