Administrative Assistant (A.A. Degree)
Do you want to receive top-notch technical training while actively engaging in a Christian community? Dordt is one of the few places where you can do exactly that. You’ll spend two years on campus preparing for a career as an administrative assistant. You’ll make friendships that may last a lifetime. And you’ll gain a new sense of God’s calling in your life.
An administrative assistant degree from Dordt will teach you to be a confident and capable employee. Employers look for intelligent and responsible problem solvers with good computer skills. They also want employees who take initiative in their work. Our graduates leave Dordt with those qualities—and more.
What You'll Learn
As an administrative assistant student, you’ll take core courses in business, English, theology, and communication. You’ll also have opportunities for internships. And you won't just develop specific job skills. You'll learn how to think critically, understand issues, and articulate your values.
What You Can Do With An Administrative Assistant Degree
This two-year program will prepare you for a career in professional settings. That might mean legal, educational, or accounting offices. Or maybe a bank or insurance agency will be a good fit. Honestly, nearly any business that needs office support personnel has a reason to employ our graduates.
An Administrative Assistant is responsible for helping the office with tasks such as making travel and meeting arrangements, compiling reports, and maintaining appropriate filling systems.
The responsibilities and duties of an Office Receptionist include greeting visitors, helping them navigate through the office, and making them comfortable while they wait.
An Accounting Clerk uses their knowledge of accounts payable and receivable to work with customers and vendors.
The business department offers business and accounting majors the opportunity to participate in one or more internships with businesses throughout Sioux County and elsewhere. Taking learning outside the classroom offers a unique way for students to explore career options, see corporate culture in a real-time environment, and gain necessary practical experience to amplify what they've learned in the classroom.
Students may participate in a variety of local internships, in internships throughout the U.S., or in international internships. The Chicago Semester Program, the European Studies Program (SPICE), and our spring internship in Nicaragua are just some options.
Internship areas include accounting, finance, human resources, information systems, international business, marketing, management, and sales.
Our interns have handled an enormous variety of tasks and projects, including preparing income tax returns, arranging press releases, conducting employee surveys, working with payroll, developing marketing questionnaires, managing small work crews, and cataloging museum items, to name a very small sample.
Students looking to get an administrative assistant degree will need to complete five core business administration classes, pick between an introduction to management or an introduction to accounting, and choose three electives. Additionally, for a medical emphasis, students can add human anatomy and physiology or medical terminology.
Should students decide to continue their studies for a four-year major, the courses they have taken will satisfy many of the core requirements for other programs. Each year, several administrative assistant students decide to remain at Dordt to work toward four-year degrees in business education, business administration, or communication; some even enter fields unrelated to business.
- Computer Literacy for Business/Accounting Majors: This course teaches important computer skills used in today’s world of business. Areas of study include beginning and intermediate Excel and Word, advanced PowerPoint, an introduction to Access, and Windows and file management basics.
- Calculating Machines/Records Management: The development of job-level skill in the operation of the electronic calculator, emphasizing the application to the solution of typical problems in business mathematics. Includes an overview of records management principles and procedures. Introduction to database application software and paperless records management are also included.
- Keyboarding and Document Formatting: Development of accuracy and speed at the keyboard. Application of skill to common office documents including emails, letters, reports, newsletters and more. The course introduces students to word processing software. Focus is placed on formatting text within the document.
- Office Management: A study of procedures and duties essential to the efficient administration of an office by all employees. Emphasis on the role of teams in the workplace including relationships and communication. Introduction to the role of ergonomics at the workstation and in the office as well as the role of company culture in designing the workspace.
- Advanced Office Administration: A continuation of Business Administration 321. An emphasis on the productive relationship between the manager and the team members. A focus is placed on completing daily activities introduced in the course including meeting procedures, travel planning, virtual technology, etc. The role of human resources is also developed concerning the positions involved in an office setting.
- Introduction to Accounting: This course provides exposure to basic accounting information concerning the recording of daily business transactions and the preparation, use, and interpretation of accounting records and reports.
- Principles of Financial Accounting: Introduces the concepts and terminology of accounting and financial reporting for modern business enterprises. The course is centered around analyzing and interpreting accounting information for use in making decisions about organizations. There is a special emphasis on analyzing the balance sheet, the statement of income and expense, the statement of cash flows, and the statement of stockholders’ equity. Additional emphasis is placed on problem-solving, critical thinking, and communication skills that are necessary for forming conclusions about business activities and to communicate these conclusions to others.
- One elective from business administration
- Two electives in any combination of business administration, communication or English writing courses
- Communication Foundations: Examines the ways in which communication is used in the public sphere to create, maintain, and change culture. Students apply understandings of the concepts of culture and communication to a range of contemporary social issues, cultural texts, and communication practices. Emphasis is given to public speaking, to listening skills, and to rhetorical methods for analyzing and constructing oral and written arguments. Students also work cooperatively on researching and designing larger class presentations.
- Responding to Literature: This course asks students to respond to poems, essays, stories, plays, a novel, and perhaps a film. Its purpose is to teach students how to understand these various forms and how to evaluate the moral vision when the imaginative world intersects with their own lives.
Note: Medical Emphasis option includes Biology 203 or 357.
Medical Emphasis Option
In Dordt's Administrative Assistant program, you can also choose to add a medical emphasis option. With this route, you will also take Biology 203 Human Biology or Biology 357 Medical Terminology.
Ready to take the next step?
With Dordt's help in figuring out her strengths and weaknesses, Erika was able to narrow down the business career paths that were right for her and find the perfect opportunity for her after graduating.
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Still looking for the right fit? Here are some additional program options that we think might interest you or are often paired with this program. You can also view the programs page to keep exploring your options.