Administrative Assistant Education Requirements And Degrees

There are several education requirements to become an administrative assistant. Administrative assistants usually study business, psychology or accounting. 38% of administrative assistants hold a bachelor's degree and 20% hold a associate degree. We found these by analyzing 947,701 administrative assistant resumes to investigate the topic of administrative assistant education more precisely.

The most common colleges for students to pursue their goal of becoming an administrative assistant are Miami Dade College and University of Phoenix. We also broke down what colleges provide the best overall education for an administrative assistant. Students have a great path to earning their administrative assistant qualifications at the following schools:

  1. Western Carolina University
  2. Stanford University
  3. Ball State University

If you're interested in getting a college degree in an affordable college for administrative assistants - Baruch College of the City University of New York is an excellent option for you. If your SAT or ACT score aren't as high as you'd like, you can look at Oklahoma Wesleyan University, as the admission requirements aren't too selective. On the other end of that spectrum are the Stanford University, Northwestern University and Boston College.

For those who would rather stay in your pajamas during the day, we prepared some online courses that can help in administrative assistant education paths.

We prepared a list of an administrative assistant certifications that you should consider. The necessary certifications that administrative assistants must have to succeed are Certified Nurse Assistant (CNA) and Medical Assistant.

What Degree Should I Get to Become an Administrative Assistant ?

We assessed our data to determine the typical level of education for administrative assistants. The most common degree for administrative assistants is bachelor's degree. In fact, 38% of administrative assistants earn that degree. A close second is associate degree with 20% and rounding it off is high school diploma with 12%.

  • Bachelors degree, 38%
  • Associate degree, 20%
  • High School Diploma degree, 12%
  • Diploma degree, 4%
  • Other Degrees, 26%
What Should I Major in to Become an Administrative Assistant ?

According to our resume data, most administrative assistants, 31% to be exact, major in business. Some other common majors for an administrative assistant include psychology and accounting majors.

Most Common Colleges for Administrative Assistant

Here are the most common colleges for a administrative assistant career in the US based on their resumes. Administrative assistants often get their degree in Miami Dade College, University of Phoenix, and University of Houston.

Miami Dade College

University of Phoenix

University of Houston

Florida State University

Ashford University

Average Administrative Assistant Salary by Education Level

Administrative assistants with a Masters degree earn more than those without, at $37,148 annually. With a Bachelors degree, administrative assistants earn a median annual income of $35,730 compared to $35,346 for administrative assistants with an Associate degree.

High School Diploma or Less

Some College/ Associate Degree

Bachelor's Degree

Master's Degree

Educationascdesc
Salaryascdesc
High School Diploma or Less$34,747
Some College/ Associate Degree$35,346
Bachelor's Degree$35,730
Master's Degree$37,148

Administrative Assistant Jobs You Might Like

Most Common Certifications For Administrative Assistant

There are certain things that come along with being certified. In addition to earning a credential that proves you know what you're doing, you might also receive some extra benefits or a salary raise from your company. Sometimes it pays to do the extra work. If you're interested in making more money as an administrative assistant, you might consider earning these certifications:

  • Certified Nurse Assistant (CNA)
  • Medical Assistant
  • Certified Medical Administrative Assistant (CMAA)

1. Certified Nurse Assistant (CNA)

Train to be a certified nurse assistant working with other health care professionals to provide quality care for elderly or sick individuals in nursing homes and hospitals and at home.

Train to be a certified nurse assistant working with other health care professionals to provide quality care for elderly or sick individuals in nursing homes and hospitals and at home.

Certification Details
  • More than two years of education or training after high school required? No
  • More than two years of work experience required? No
  • Oral or Written Exam Required? Yes
  • Renewal Required? 
Certifying Website
Certified Nurse Assistant
Certifying Organization
American Red Cross
2. Medical Assistant

The medical assistant job description varies depending on the employer's needs. A medical assistant is a multi-skilled professional and an asset to a physician.

The medical assistant job description varies depending on the employer's needs. A medical assistant is a multi-skilled professional and an asset to a physician.

Certification Details
  • More than two years of education or training after high school required? No
  • More than two years of work experience required? No
  • Oral or Written Exam Required? Yes
  • Renewal Required? Every 1 year(s)
Certifying Website
Medical Assistant
Certifying Organization
American Society of Phlebotomy...
3. Certified Medical Administrative Assistant (CMAA)

A Certified Medical Administrative Assistant (CMAA) performs routine administrative and clinical tasks to keep the offices and clinics of physicians running smoothly.

A Certified Medical Administrative Assistant (CMAA) performs routine administrative and clinical tasks to keep the offices and clinics of physicians running smoothly.

Certification Details
  • More than two years of education or training after high school required? Yes
  • More than two years of work experience required? Yes
  • Oral or Written Exam Required? Yes
  • Renewal Required? Every 2 year(s)
Course That Help You To Prepare For Certification
Certified Medical Administrative Assistant (CMAA) (Voucher Included)
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Entry Level Jobs For Becoming An Administrative Assistant

Top Online Courses For Administrative Assistants

Sometimes things are just better when you get to stay in your pajamas all day. That includes school. We found top courses for administrative assistants from Udemy, Coursera, EDX, and ed2go that will help you advance in your career. Here are essential skills you need to be a administrative assistant:

  • Customer service
  • Data entry
  • Communication
If you want to improve administrative assistants skills these courses could help you in this.

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Administrative Assistant Fundamentals
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Administrative Assistant Applications
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Gain the skills and knowledge you'll need to prepare for the Certified Administrative Professional exam and begin a rewarding career as an administrative assistant...

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Certified Medical Administrative Assistant with Medical Billing and Coding (Vouchers Included)
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CPC Certified Medical Administrative Assistant with Medical Billing and Coding (Vouchers Included)
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CCA Certified Medical Administrative Assistant with Medical Billing and Coding (Vouchers Included)
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Administrative Law
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Top 10 Colleges For Administrative Assistants

In a lot of cases, a higher education can mean a higher salary or even a better job. That's why we found out the best colleges for administrative assistants. We based this list on these metrics: admissions rate, retention rate, mean earnings of students working, ratio of working vs. non-working students 10 years after admission, average cost of attendance and median debt for graduates.

1. Western Carolina University

Cullowhee, NC • Private

In-State Tuition
$3,926
Enrollment
9,835

2. Stanford University

Stanford, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$51,354
Enrollment
7,083

3. Ball State University

Muncie, IN • Private

In-State Tuition
$9,896
Enrollment
15,529

4. University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,584
Enrollment
10,764

5. Bowling Green State University

Bowling Green, OH • Private

In-State Tuition
$11,105
Enrollment
13,729

6. Cedar Crest College

Allentown, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$39,216
Enrollment
1,303

7. Morgan State University

Baltimore, MD • Private

In-State Tuition
$7,900
Enrollment
6,404

8. Northwestern University

Evanston, IL • Private

In-State Tuition
$54,568
Enrollment
8,451

9. Siena Heights University

Adrian, MI • Private

In-State Tuition
$27,124
Enrollment
2,035

10. University of Akron

Akron, OH • Private

In-State Tuition
$11,463
Enrollment
13,676

Top 10 Affordable Colleges For Administrative Assistants

If those top 10 were a bit out of your price range, you might want to check these schools instead. After factoring in in-state tuition and fees, average cost of attendance, admissions rate, average net price and mean earnings after 6 years, we found that these are the most affordable schools for administrative assistants.

1. Baruch College of the City University of New York

New York, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$7,262
Cost of Attendance
Cost of attendance is the estimated annual cost of attending a particular college or university. It includes tuition and fees, books and supplies, and living expenses.
$14,046

2. SUNY Farmingdale

Farmingdale, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$8,306
Cost of Attendance
Cost of attendance is the estimated annual cost of attending a particular college or university. It includes tuition and fees, books and supplies, and living expenses.
$16,091

3. California State University - Bakersfield

Bakersfield, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$7,309
Cost of Attendance
Cost of attendance is the estimated annual cost of attending a particular college or university. It includes tuition and fees, books and supplies, and living expenses.
$16,714

4. University of Puerto Rico - Mayaguez

Mayaguez, PR • Private

In-State Tuition
$4,094
Cost of Attendance
Cost of attendance is the estimated annual cost of attending a particular college or university. It includes tuition and fees, books and supplies, and living expenses.
$14,302

5. Minot State University

Minot, ND • Private

In-State Tuition
$7,064
Cost of Attendance
Cost of attendance is the estimated annual cost of attending a particular college or university. It includes tuition and fees, books and supplies, and living expenses.
$15,576

6. California State University - Dominguez Hills

Carson, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$6,942
Cost of Attendance
Cost of attendance is the estimated annual cost of attending a particular college or university. It includes tuition and fees, books and supplies, and living expenses.
$14,469

7. Clayton State University

Morrow, GA • Private

In-State Tuition
$5,419
Cost of Attendance
Cost of attendance is the estimated annual cost of attending a particular college or university. It includes tuition and fees, books and supplies, and living expenses.
$17,697

8. Brooklyn College of the City University of New York

Brooklyn, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$7,240
Cost of Attendance
Cost of attendance is the estimated annual cost of attending a particular college or university. It includes tuition and fees, books and supplies, and living expenses.
$13,991

9. Dickinson State University

Dickinson, ND • Private

In-State Tuition
$6,768
Cost of Attendance
Cost of attendance is the estimated annual cost of attending a particular college or university. It includes tuition and fees, books and supplies, and living expenses.
$15,506

10. SUNY Polytechnic Institute

Utica, NY • Private

In-State Tuition
$8,238
Cost of Attendance
Cost of attendance is the estimated annual cost of attending a particular college or university. It includes tuition and fees, books and supplies, and living expenses.
$21,567

Top 10 Hardest Colleges To Get Into For Administrative Assistants

Some people like a challenge. Well, we challenge you to get into one of these schools. It's not going to be easy. We know this based on these institutions' admissions rates, average SAT scores accepted, median ACT scores accepted and mean earnings of students 6 years after admission.

1. Stanford University

Stanford, CA • Private

Admissions Rate
4%
SAT Average
1,497

2. Northwestern University

Evanston, IL • Private

Admissions Rate
8%
SAT Average
1,508

3. Boston College

Chestnut Hill, MA • Private

Admissions Rate
28%
SAT Average
1,429

4. Boston University

Boston, MA • Private

Admissions Rate
22%
SAT Average
1,420

5. University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA • Private

Admissions Rate
8%
SAT Average
1,492

6. SUNY at Binghamton

Vestal, NY • Private

Admissions Rate
40%
SAT Average
1,376

7. New York University

New York, NY • Private

Admissions Rate
20%
SAT Average
1,419

8. Bentley University

Waltham, MA • Private

Admissions Rate
43%
SAT Average
1,338

9. University of Southern California

Los Angeles, CA • Private

Admissions Rate
13%
SAT Average
1,445

10. Brandeis University

Waltham, MA • Private

Admissions Rate
31%
SAT Average
1,398

Top 10 Easier To Apply Colleges For Administrative Assistants

Why make getting a job harder on yourself than it has to be? With these colleges, you're sure to be accepted in no time. We compiled admissions rates, average SAT scores, average ACT scores and average salary of students 6 years after graduation in order to uncover which were the easiest schools to get into.

1. Oklahoma Wesleyan University

Bartlesville, OK • Private

Admissions Rate
68%
SAT Average
964

2. Notre Dame College

Cleveland, OH • Private

Admissions Rate
90%
SAT Average
994

3. LIM College

New York, NY • Private

Admissions Rate
83%
SAT Average
1,061

4. Notre Dame de Namur University

Belmont, CA • Private

Admissions Rate
82%
SAT Average
983

5. Holy Names University

Oakland, CA • Private

Admissions Rate
70%
SAT Average
849

6. Oregon Institute of Technology

Klamath Falls, OR • Private

Admissions Rate
96%
SAT Average
1,139

7. D'Youville College

Buffalo, NY • Private

Admissions Rate
100%
SAT Average
1,072

8. Presentation College

Aberdeen, SD • Private

Admissions Rate
97%
SAT Average
1,050

9. Lewis-Clark State College

Lewiston, ID • Private

Admissions Rate
100%
SAT Average
1,009

10. Fresno Pacific University

Fresno, CA • Private

Admissions Rate
85%
SAT Average
1,053

Administrative Assistant Internship Jobs

Administrative Assistant Jobs

Updated April 30, 2021