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Administrative Assisting

Entry Level Assessment Blueprint

Specific Competencies and Skills Tested in this Assessment:

Computer Applications 

  • Exhibit understanding of basic computer terminology
  • Demonstrate basic computer operating practices (e.g., start-up, rebooting, saving, using the help function)
  • Demonstrate understanding of the Internet for research and information 
  • Display accurate data entry skills  
  • Display familiarity with formatting techniques and practices 
  • Utilize procedures and methods to enhance security (e.g., computer, identity, and passwords)
  • Merge mailing lists and forms
  • Design newsletters, announcements, and brochures
  • Create, edit, and print graphics and charts 
  • Create, edit, and print spreadsheets
  • Create, edit, and print database information  
  • Create, edit, and print presentation information
  • Create, edit, and print letters, envelopes, reports, and memos
  • Create, edit, and print simple tables and business forms
  • Coordinate meetings, projects, and conferences, including teleconferencing and web meetings 
  • Demonstrate appropriate uses of email and instant messaging 


Working in an Office Environment

  • Exhibit effective written and verbal skills (e.g., correspondence, proofreading, grammar, spelling) 
  • Prioritize tasks and time 
  • Display effective listening skills and follow directions accurately 
  • Demonstrate ethical awareness  
  • Exhibit effective personal and office safety 
  • Establish professional networking methods
  • Demonstrate problem solving and critical thinking skills
  • Display appropriate interpersonal skills and a willingness to assist others 


Records Management

  • File by basic filing methods
  • Manage electronic document files 
  • Follow procedures to purge or archive files
  • Manage records to ensure physical security and confidentiality 
  • Demonstrate knowledge of document control procedures

(tracing history and access limitation) 


Office Procedures

  • Utilize telephone etiquette and take accurate messages, including cell phones, pagers, and other communication devices
  • Maintain appointment calendars, including office resource reservations 
  • Make travel arrangements and itineraries (e.g., online reservations)
  • Use appropriate reference and training materials
  • Prepare meeting agendas and minutes
  • Use and maintain office equipment, including copier, fax, and scanner 
  • Assemble and maintain policy and procedure manuals
  • Order and maintain office supply inventory 
  • Process incoming and outgoing mail, including shipments 


Accounting and Computational Skills

  • Demonstrate foundational financial skills 
  • Make change and manage petty cash funds, including receipts and audit trail 
  • Exhibit understanding of basic accounting terminology 
  • Use basic accounting software 
  • Demonstrate an understanding of journal and ledger entries 
  • Prepare and demonstrate understanding of payroll data 
  • Journal accounts receivable and accounts payable 
  • Prepare bank deposits and reconcile bank statements
  • Perform math computations (e.g., interest, percents, discounts, averages, and ratios) 

Written Assessment:

Administration Time: 3 hours

Number of Questions: 195


Areas Covered:

Computer Applications: 33%

Working in an Office Environment: 19%

Records Management: 10%

Office Procedures: 18%

Accounting and Computational Skills: 20%

Sample Questions:

A program that searches the web for keywords then returns a list is called a 

  1. web browser 
  2. search directory 
  3. search engine 
  4. web server 


A high school office intern makes a mistake in his or her work.  As a supervisor, an administrative assistant should 

  1. correct the mistake for the intern 
  2. give the work to someone else to correct 
  3. give the intern an opportunity to make his or her own correction 
  4. report the mistake to the high school principal 


The most widely used filing method is 

  1. chronological 
  2. geographical 
  3. numerical 
  4. alphabetical 


An advantage of metered mail is that it is 

  1. less expensive 
  2. dispatched faster at the post office 
  3. easily identified 
  4. limited to newspapers and magazines 


A $300 invoice dated August 1 was paid on August 10.  What is the amount of payment if the terms of the invoice are 3/10, 2/15, n/30?  

  1. $309 
  2. $300 
  3. $294 
  4. $291 


Performance Assessment:

Administration Time: 3 hours

Number of Jobs: 5

Areas Covered: 

15%   Business Writing – Memo Preparation 

Memo parts, placement, keyboarding skills, appearance, and time to complete Job 1.  


37% Document Processing

Form letter, appearance and accuracy, letters (merge), letter signed and initialed, envelope preparation, business course selections and chart preparation, course selections chart accuracy, budget preparation, accuracy of budget, work priority log, work priorities, name and date on work log, assignments placed in order in file folder, and time to complete Job 2.


20% Preparing a Spreadsheet

Main headings centered, column headings centered or justified, use of currency format, use of boldfacing, keyboarding skills, use of formulas, spreadsheet overall appearance, and time to complete Job 3.  


14% Creating a Chart

Chart form used, format, accuracy and completeness of data, and time to complete Job 4.  


14% Create a Flyer

Vertical alignment, page border, flyer and bulleted text, and time to complete Job 5.  


Sample Job:

Creating a Flyer 

Maximum Time:   20 minutes

Participant Activity:  The test participant will create a flyer using the specifications provided.  Vertically center all information, create a 3-point black page border, type test inside the border using Arial 28 font, create a centered and bulleted list in Arial 20 font, and print the flyer.  

The Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE), the leading professional organization for career and technical educators, commends all students who participate in career and technical education programs and choose to validate their educational attainment through rigorous technical assessments. In taking this assessment you demonstrate to your school, your parents and guardians, your future employers and yourself that you understand the concepts and knowledge needed to succeed in the workplace. Good Luck!