Administrative Assistant Certification and Certificate Programs

Administrative assistant certificate programs cover various computer and customer service skills. These skills enable individuals to fulfill the daily duties necessary to run an office successfully.

Essential Information

Administrative assistant certificate programs are widely available at 2-year community colleges and vocational schools. These programs cover fundamental computer, customer service and office organization skills. Students participate in both lecture-based courses and hands-on learning opportunities.

  • Program Levels in Administrative Assisting: Certificate
  • Prerequisites: High school diploma or GED
  • Program Length: 1 year

Certificate in Administrative Assisting

Administrative assistant certificate programs can often be completed in about a year of full-time study; longer if studying part-time. Some programs require an internship. Students will take an array of courses, including office management courses and the some of the following:

  • Databases
  • Business English
  • Communications
  • Keyboarding
  • Business writing
  • Microsoft Word for business

Employment Outlook and Salary Information

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), executive secretaries and administrative assistants make up one of the largest professions in the nation, with over 2.2 million positions in 2014. The BLS predicted that this profession would continue to remain a booming career, as it should grow at a rate of 12% between 2012 and 2022. As of 2014, the average salary for a secretary or administrative assistant was $34,500 per year or $16.59 per hour. Administrative assistants who worked for the postal system and federal government reported higher average earnings than those in other industries (

Continuing Education and Certification Information

Organizations like the International Association of Administrative Professionals (IAAP) and the International Virtual Assistants Association (IVAA) offer voluntary opportunities for administrative assistants to earn professional certification. Earning the IAAP's Certified Administrative Professional credential is one such distinction. In some instances, passing the certification exam can even count as college credit.

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