Research & Development
The SASS test is the resulting product of a large research program sponsored by EEI. The project was launched in 2000 in response to the demand for development of a new employment selection system suitable for contemporary clerical and administrative support positions. This was particularly essential, as the requirements of clerical and administrative support positions had changed in nature over the previous two decades (i.e. computer technology). Replacing the clerical assessment battery, the SASS was created and designed with consideration of technological advancements in such positions.
More than 20 investor-owned utility companies cooperated in the validation of the development of the SASS project. Over three thousand company supervisors and administrative personnel supplied the research information analyzed, resulting in the development and validation of three test batteries as well as a simulation used to predict the likelihood of success of candidates in various administrative jobs. Each test battery was to be considerably relevant to administrative job performance.
Test Batteries on the SASS Test
- BCAB (Basic Competency Assessment Battery)
- BKSB (Basic Keyboard Skills Battery)
- ACAB (Advanced Competency Assessment Batteries)
BCAB - Basic Competency Assessment Battery
The BCAB consists of four tests/sections:
- Classifying Test (4 lists/12 minutes)
This test measures one’s ability to scan and classify lists of names, addresses, numbers and codes according to given rules, which may vary in complexity. A category rule is presented and then the test-taker is asked to classify a series of items based on the given rule. This section consists of four lists of 25 items each which need to be classified. The test-taker is allotted a total of 12 minutes to classify all the items on each list (approximately 2-2.5 minutes per a list). The test score is comprised of the number of items classified correctly and points are not deducted for incorrect answers. Including a brief practice session, the total test time is approximately 25 minutes.
- Spelling/Grammar Test (50 errors/8 minutes)
This test assesses one's basic spelling and grammar competencies and abilities. Test takers are required to review several paragraphs of text and identify and correct spelling and grammatical errors. There are 50 places where one must select which of two, three, or four alternative words are correct. The test taker is allotted twelve minutes to read and correct the text. The test score is determined by calculating the percentage of the 50 errors the test taker accurately corrected; points are not deducted for wrong answers. Including a practice session, the total test time is approximately 23 minutes.
- Basic Mathematics Test (20 questions/18 minutes)
This test assesses one’s basic math abilities. The test taker is presented with five problems, consisting of 3-4 multiple choice questions each. Each problem presents information that is to be used to solve each of the given questions in the respective problem. These questions will require the test taker to perform various calculations including addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division as well as utilize calculating percentages. The test taker has 18 minutes to complete the test and the score is determined by calculating the percentage of correct answers; points are not deducted for incorrect answers. Including a practice session, the total test time is approximately 25 minutes.
- Filing/Sorting Test (6 questions/6 minutes)
This test measures one’s ability to file/sort items according to given rules, which vary in levels of complexity. Each question presents the test taker with filing or sorting rules regarding filing or sorting and requires the test taker to file or sort a set of items according to the given rules. The test consists of six problems, all to be completed in six minutes. The score is determined by calculating the percent of correct answers; points are not deducted for incorrect answers. Including a practice session, the total test time is approximately 10 minutes.
BKSB - Basic Keyboard Skills Battery
The Basic Keyboard Skills Battery is one of three test batteries on the SASS test.
The BKSB consists of two tests/sections:
- Data Entry Test (3 forms/23 minutes, including instruction & practice)
This test measures how quickly and accurately a candidate can input data from paper form into a fixed-formatted screen on the computer. The test-taker is given a form with information which s/he must then enter into the fixed-field formatted screen. The test taker receives three information forms and must enter the information in two or four minutes per a form, depending on the form.
- Production Typing Test (1 text/7 minutes)
This test measures the candidate's ability, speed, and accuracy, with regard to typing. The test taker is provided with a text in a paper format, which they need to type in seven minutes. Including a practice session, the total test time is approximately 15 minutes.
ACAB - Advanced Competency Assessment Batteries
The Advanced Competency Assessment Batteries consists of four batteries:
- Simulation Work Sample (1 simulation/30 minutes) This computerized assessment is used to measure a candidate's ability to multitask, as well as to organize and prioritize assignments. The assessment is an actual simulation in which the candidate takes on the role of an administrative assistant serving six employees at a made-up company. S/he is required to perform various functions relevant to the position, including data entry, looking up information from various databases, calculations, and general problem solving. The candidate is presented with four assignments, which s/he may approach in any order. Simultaneously, the candidate must handle e-mails and phone calls, which may interrupt their work. The candidate should be aware that the priorities may change throughout the simulation. The simulation is 30 minutes long; with a practice session, the total test time is approximately 60 minutes.
- Data Entry/Database Work Sample (3 parts/6 samples/28 minutes) This test assesses one's competence in data entry and database operations and consists of three parts, each one requiring the candidate to enter data into a fixed-field formatted screens. The results of Parts I and II reflect the candidate's speed and accuracy, while the score in Part III only reflects the candidate's accuracy. The simulation is 28 minutes long; with a practice session, the total test time is approximately 65 minutes.
- Part I - the test taker is required to enter a Purchase Order from a handwritten request that is not formatted as it is on the computer. It is important that the candidate find and accurately enter the relevant information in the correct fields on the computer. This part includes two samples, each with a four minute time limit. (2 samples/8 minutes)
- Part II - the test taker is required to enter a Purchase Order from a handwritten request, like in Part I, only this time the order is incomplete and the test- taker is provided with instructions on how to find the missing information. This part has two samples, each with a six minute time limit. (2 samples/12 minutes)
- Part III - the test taker is required to review a Purchase Order to ensure completeness and accuracy. S/he must examine the included paperwork and make the appropriate changes as necessary. This part has two samples, each with a four minute time limit. (2 samples/8 minutes)
- Word Processing (2 tests/50 minutes) This battery tests word processing skills and is comprised of two tests, Revised Copy Typing and Text Editing. Each one beginning with instructions and a practice session in order to allow test takers to become familiar with the procedures of the test.
- Revised Copy Typing - this test measures competence in document creation via a word processing system. Candidates must proofread, correct, and enter text which they receive in a paper format. The text includes errors with handwritten corrections as well as specific notations for editing and formatting changes, all of which the test taker must incorporate in the document. There is a five minute time limit to type all of the information on the form. Speed and accuracy are of utmost importance.
- Text Editing - this test measures competence in use of word processing functions in order to edit texts. Test takers are asked to perform functions such as center, bold, italicize, underline, and change the font type and size of text, search and replace text, copy, cut, paste, etc. Candidates are given 5 items to complete in 90 seconds. Speed and accuracy are imperative.
- Spreadsheet (3 questions/24 minutes) This battery is comprised of three parts and assesses one's ability to work with spreadsheets. Though the test does not utilize a specific spreadsheet program, it does use procedures which are common among major spreadsheet applications.
- Part I - the test taker is required to enter information that is handwritten on a paper into a spreadsheet and is instructed on how to format the fields. This part has two samples, each with a five minute time limit.
- Part II - the test taker is required to show competency in the creation, copying, and modification of spreadsheet formulas. S/he must enter and change formulas, as well as format cells, based on the given instructions from their paper work. This part has two samples, each with a three minute time limit.
- Part III - the test-taker is required to review a spreadsheet to ensure that it is complete and accurate. S/he is to compare the provided paperwork with what is displayed on the computer screen and make changes as needed. This part has two samples, each with a four minute time limit.
The results of Parts I and II reflect the candidate's speed and accuracy. The Spreadsheet Test battery is 24 minutes long. Including a practice session, the total test time is approximately 65 minutes.
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