Certified Administrative Professional (CAP) and Certified Professional Secretary (CPS) Frequently Asked Questions

The internationally recognized Certified Professional Secretary (CPS) and Certified Administrative Professional (CAP) exams are offered by the International Association of Administrative Professionals. Its website is http://www.iaap-hq.org/certification. Durham Tech does not offer these exams.

Why should you take this exam?
  • Shows employers, clients and associates you are a committed as a professional who has earned an internationally recognized certification;
  • Enhances assurance of employability;
  • Promotes career advancement and potential pay increases; and
  • Offers possible college credit toward a degree.
Why should take this exam?

Administrative assistants and office managers who would like to advance their careers, firmly establish their current positions, or enhance their expertise in the field by receiving the CPS/CAP credentials.

What does the exam include?

The exam includes these four learning modules:

  1. Office Systems and Technology: This module covers topics such as technical terminology, hardware for computer operations, the network enterprise, document layout and design, system security, system software and software for business applications, office design, and ergonomics;
  2. Office Administration: This module covers topics such as file management, composition and editing, research and reference, rules of grammar, and information distributio;
  3. Management: This module covers topics such as human resources, accounting procedures and analysis, time management, and communication; and
  4. Advanced Organizational Management: This module covers topics such as organizational planning, team skills, advanced administration, and advanced communication.
What are the education and experience qualifications to sit for the exam?

No Degree
Associate's Degree
Bachelor’s Degree

Administrative Experience
4 years
3 years
2 years

All experience submitted must be within the past 15 years. You must have held each position at least two months. All experience does not have to be with one employer.

Must all of the experience be complete before I apply to take the exam?

Yes, CAP exam applicants must have all experience complete and verified at the time they submit their application.

Is only full-time administrative experience acceptable?

No.  Administrative experience of at least 20 hours per week is also considered.

How is my experience verified?

Administrative experience is verified using the Job Function & Employer’s Statement found in the Exam Guide at
http://www.iaap-hq.org/sites/default/files/pdf/certification/CAPExamGuide.pdf. A letter from the supervisor listing dates of employment, job title and job duties is also acceptable.

How much is the exam?

The exam costs $200 for members and $300 for non-members. Fees are payable and submitted to the International Association of Administrative Professionals (IAAP). Do not make or submit payment to Durham Tech.

Am I required to be a member of IAAP before taking the CAP exam?

You are not required to be a member, but members of IAAP do receive discounts on exam fees and some study materials.

Do I need to attend college classes before I take the exam?

To prepare for the CAP exam, candidates may need to take course hours in the areas tested on the exam.

Where do I take the exam?

Durham Tech does not offer the CAP exam.  The list of exam centers can be found on the IAAP website at www.iaap-hq.org/certification/exams.

What textbooks do I need for this program?
  • Required Text: Welcome to Microsoft Office 2007 (Silver Series), Jill Murphy, Labyrinth Learning Labs, ISBN # 978-1-59136-169-5
  • Recommended Text: Certified Professional Secretary Examination and Certified Administrative Professional Examination Review: Office Administration, 5th Edition, Betty L. Schroeder and Diane Routheir Graf, ISBN# 978-0131145511

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