Associate Degree Programs to Be an Administrative Assistant
Read detailed information about associate-level studies for aspiring or current administrative assistants. Find out what courses are taken in this type of program, continuing education options and statistics concerning job outlook and salary.
Administrative assistant associate's degree programs cover topics applicable to general business settings, like bookkeeping, office communications and keyboarding. Students will learn how to use basic office equipment and computer applications, including the Microsoft Office Suite. Graduates of these programs can gain employment in law offices, medical offices, private businesses and government offices as secretaries or administrative assistants. Those who choose to enroll in this program must first earn a high school diploma or its GED equivalent.
The curriculum consists of general education courses combined with specific courses on business, computer skills, organization and other related subjects. A student might run across the following courses when enrolled in this degree program:
- Business editing
- Information management
- Microsoft word
- Principles of accounting
- Portfolio building
- Office team procedures
- Human relations
- Integrated office systems
- Business law
Career Outlook and Salary Information
Administrative assistants could anticipate an average growth of 12% in the field as a whole between 2010 and 2020, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Employment of medical secretaries, however, was expected to increase by 41% in the same time frame. The annual average wage of an administrative assistant working in general business settings (excluding legal, executive and medical positions) was $33,560 in 2012 (www.bls.gov).
Continuing Education Opportunities
Graduates of an associate degree program can transfer to a 4-year institution to pursue a bachelor's degree in many fields, since the curriculum covers all of the standard general education requirements. Ability to transfer credits depends on the school. If one wants to stay in the field of administration, he or she can opt to pursue a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) program. This degree can qualify graduates for a wide variety of positions in all types of organizations.
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