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Office Administration

Office Administration

Office Administration

Multi-tasking would be an understatement

The phone is ringing, there are three spreadsheets open on the computer screen and a team meeting starts in two minutes. This is the life of an office administrator. Personable and committed, they create order out of chaos and provide the glue that holds businesses together.

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Program Description

You will learn the basic skills required for an entry-level administrative position including:

  • Accounting
  • Communications
  • Electronic transcription
  • Office procedures
  • Spreadsheets
  • Word processing

You must achieve a minimum keyboarding speed of 30 net words per minute in order to graduate.

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Admission Requirements


  • Grade 12 English (C, M or U)*

*General Educational Development or Academic and Career Entrance courses may be considered in some programs.

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Career Options

Graduate employment may be found in a wide variety of administrative settings, including:

  • Educational institutions
  • Government – municipal and provincial
  • Non-profit organizations
  • Corporate businesses

Past Durham College graduates have found employment with the following job titles:

  • Administrative Assistant
  • Customer Service
  • Office Administrator
  • Secretary/Receptionist
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Course List & Descriptions

Semester 1

Semester 2

This course introduces the student to fundamental accounting concepts.  It introduces the student to the double entry bookkeeping cycle, including the preparation of financial statements for sole proprietorships and basic payroll.

This course is designed to provide students with the foundation in communication skills necessary to succeed in their program and in their careers as office administrators. The principles of written communication skills, editing skills, and verbal communication skills will be examined. Writing skills will be developed through online grammar software assignments/exercises and comprehensive testing; correct sentence structure and grammar will be emphasized throughout the course.  Editing skills required to produce final copy of computer-generated and rough-draft material will be developed.  Professional speaking communication skills will be developed through verbal presentations.

This course is designed to teach students sound computer skills.  Students should be able to produce accurate, mailable copy from rough drafts and unarranged material of any kind.  This course will provide instruction in the basics of Word.  Coverage of Windows and basic PowerPoint will be given in this course as well.

In this introductory level course, students learn to apply knowledge of interpersonal relations and group dynamics to one-on-one and group situations.  Emphasis will be placed on understanding, developing and improving effective interpersonal skills.

This course is designed to teach students sound computer keyboarding skills.  A minimum skill level of 25 net words per minute must be achieved to pass this subject.   This course will provide instruction and practice using the touch method on the alphabet, number and symbol keys, and the numeric keypad.

This course helps the student acquire practical and transferable office administration skills, attitudes, behaviours and knowledge which can be valuable in obtaining and retaining careers in today’s fast-changing office environment.  These can be applied to any office situation, ranging from a multinational corporation to a home-based enterprise including being a virtual assistant.  Topics covered include Internet research and e-mail messages; managing time and stress; telecommunications; office reception and customer service; scheduling appointments, planning meetings and travel arrangements; handling the office mail; document management; customer service and job search.

This course builds upon the skills learned and developed in Communications for Office Professionals I and is designed to provide student with the ability to apply communication skills frequently using by office administrators.  The areas of reading, writing, listening, and speaking will each be examined and further developed.  professional communication skills be developed through practical application of listening, note taking, preparation of meeting agendas and minutes, writing business letters, communicating with technology, researching and analyzing, producing written reports and giving verbal presentations.

This course is designed to allow the student to build on basic computer skills.  Students should be able to attractively set-up mailable documents from rough drafts and unarranged material of any kind, including letters, envelopes, memos, reports, manuscripts, and tables.  Word 2010 using Windows will be used to introduce the student to the concept of computer applications in the business office environment.

Elective general education courses appear in your program of study as GNED 0000. This is called a “placeholder.” This placeholder is replaced by an actual course that you will select from a list of available "elective" general education courses when you register in the relevant semester.

Please note that the type and number of elective courses available will vary from semester to semester and from year to year.

Please visit the General Education website for more information.

required of a word processing professional and includes a review of grammar and punctuation rules.  Students will use Word 2010 to transcribe — from electronic dictation; from error-ridden, incomplete, hand-written copy; and from error-ridden, incomplete, computer-generated copy — various types of business material which may include memos, letters, reports, itineraries, press releases, etc.  Students will be required to use skills previously learned in Computerized Document Production I and in Communications for Office Professionals I and to develop those skills to higher levels by integrating them in the production of error-free documents on a first-time printout at a reasonable production speed.

This course is designed to teach students sound computer keyboarding skills.  A minimum skill level of 30 net words per minute must be achieved to pass this subject.   This course will provide instruction and practice using the touch method on the alphabet, number and symbol keys and the numeric keypad.

this course will provide students with skills necessary to understand the fundamental principles of Microsoft Excel – spreadsheets software.  Students will learn to create, edit, and enhance spreadsheets using formatting, formula and function creation, and the development of a chart.

Courses and course descriptions are for the next academic year and are subject to change.

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Program Costs

Tuition Fees$2,609$11,820
Compulsory Ancillary Fees$1,024$1,584
Incidental Fees$0$0
Total Fees:$3,633$13,404

Please note: fees are based on the 2013-2014 academic year and do not include textbooks. For more information please see Other fees to consider.

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Opportunities For Degree Completion Or Additional Credentials

Qualified graduates can go on to take:

Graduates may also be eligible to apply their academic credits toward further study through Durham College’s partnerships with many Canadian and international colleges and universities. 

Please visit the Transfer Guide for more information.

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Disability Considerations

Students with disabilities who wish to discuss accommodation plans are encouraged to contact the Centre for Students with Disabilities.

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  • Start classes in May.
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