A 2-year associate's degree program in office systems technology emphasizes human resources knowledge, ethical practices and the communication skills graduates will need in an office environment. Some schools allow students to choose fields of emphasis by taking elective courses in medical, banking or legal studies. In addition to class work, students may be required to participate in internships before graduation.
Students must have a high school diploma or GED certificate in order to enroll in this program. Some schools require students to take keyboarding and basic computer classes as prerequisites.
Associate's Degree in Office Systems Technology
Classes in an office systems technology program focus on the technical aspects of office work, such as desktop publishing, word processing, spreadsheets, e-mail management and database creation. Other skills common in an office environment are taught, such as staffing, ethics and communication. Students might also gain general knowledge of business procedures, such as basic accounting, report preparation and business communications. Course offerings may include:
- Accounting principles
- Business communications
- Office procedures
- Records management
Popular Career Options
Graduates of an associate's program in office systems technology have many career choices, depending on the elective courses they chose. Career options may include:
- Medical secretary
- Accounting clerk
Employment Outlook and Salary Information
Bookkeeping, accounting and auditing clerks earned an annual median salary of $37,250 in 2015, while medical secretaries earned $33,040, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Jobs for the clerks were predicted to decrease by 8%, from 2014-2024, and medical secretaries could expect much faster than average employment growth of 21%, the BLS projected.
Office workers who want to move into management positions may need to pursue bachelor's degrees, either in business administration or in other specialty areas. For example, a medical secretary who aspires to become a manager in a medical practice could pursue a degree in health services administration.
To summarize, an associate's degree in office systems technology equips students with the various computer and organizational skills most vital for clerk or secretary positions.