Office Technology Information instructor and student in discussion

Office Technology Information Program

The Office Technology Information (OFTI) program at COD provides fundamental and advanced education and practice in a wide range of skills to prepare students for successful careers as administrative support professionals.

Throughout the program, students will gain proficiencies in office technology information courses in business correspondence, keyboarding, desktop publishing, document formatting, electronic communication and presentation design, office procedures, professional development and word processing. Three associate degree and six certificate options enable students to customize their studies to match their needs and goals. 

Each certificate or degree will enable you to develop your skills using current technology and procedures that are necessary for a successful professional career in an exciting environment. Our tentative yearly course offerings can give you an idea of which courses you will be required to take and when they will be available.

Determine Your Path

Administrative assistants are increasingly assuming responsibilities once reserved for managerial and professional staff. This occupation ranks among those with the largest number of job openings. Opportunities are best for applicants with extensive knowledge of computer software applications.

Whether you are preparing for a career in administrative support, planning to transfer to a four-year baccalaureate-granting institution or updating your skills, COD has the right program for you. COD offers:

  • Dedicated instructors with years of practical industry experience, certification and licensing.
  • instruction in top-notch facilities and state-of-the-art equipment.
  • Flexible schedules with day, evening and online learning.
  • Practical hands-on experience as well as classroom-based studies.
  • An active and engaged advisory board made up of local industry professionals who help to maintain the quality and professional relevance of the OFTI program.

Administrative Assistant and Meeting/Event Planning

The Administrative Assistant Meeting/Event Planning, Associate in Applied Science degree prepares the student for an administrative support position with a focus on meeting and event planning.

Administrative Support Specialist

The Administrative Support Specialist, Associate in Applied Science degree prepares students by developing and enhancing their skills using current technologies in today's office.

Executive Assistant

The Executive Assistant, Associate in Applied Science degree prepares students by developing and enhancing their skills using current technologies in today’s office.

Administrative Assistant and Meeting/Event Planning

The Administrative Assistant and Meeting/Event Planning, Certificate prepares the student for an administrative support position with a focus on meeting and event planning. 

Administrative Support Essentials

The Administrative Support Essentials, Certificate provides additional opportunity for administrative professionals and progresses into the Administrative Support Specialist certificate and degree.

Administrative Support Specialist

The Administrative Support Specialist, Certificate requires 46 credits.

Medical Office

The Medical Office, Certificate prepares the student for an entry level administrative support position into the medical office environment. 

Office Technology Specialist

The Office Technology Specialist, Certificate prepares the student for an entry-level administrative support position.   

Word Specialist

The Word Specialist, Certificate develops MS Word skills and includes topics for industry certification.

COD Stories

Violet Jackson

“I would encourage anyone considering enrollment at COD to make an appointment, meet with a counselor and tour the facilities. I am certain they will find that COD brings just as much to the table as other institutions but in a caring, supporting and flexible learning environment at an affordable cost." - Violet Jackson

Violet's COD Story

COD Stories

Angie Johnson

“I have been strongly suggesting starting out at COD for all the reasons I decided to attend -- for financial reasons, proximity to where I live, and their degree program offerings. I’ve explained how the courses I took, particularly in the OFTI program, have immediate practical application." - Angie Johnson

Angie's COD Story

COD Stories

Erika Anderson

“I had no idea what to do, so I took Career and College Skills classes. Both were incredible. Those classes and their extraordinary teachers gave me the courage to start a path for myself.” - Erika Andersen

Erika's COD Story

COD Stories

Kristin Beemer

"The opportunities COD offers are vast and the skills, knowledge and connections you will gain are priceless." - Kristin Beemer

Kristin's COD Story

Get Started Today

The first step to getting started in office technology information is to apply for admission.

Office Technology Information Program graduates will:

  • Demonstrate effective written and oral communication skills
  • Demonstrate proper keyboarding and document formatting skills
  • Develop general use and operation of computers
  • Illustrate strong proofreading and grammar skills
  • Design, prepare, and present informative, persuasive, and demonstrative presentations
  • Format and produce academic and business reports, letters, outlines, tables, itineraries, agendas, meeting minutes, press releases, title pages, long documents, table of contents, and indexes
  • Develop personal professionalism and self-confidence
  • Create professional employment documents
  • Improve multi-tasking and time management skills
  • Demonstrate effective team, leadership, and critical thinking skills

Administrative Support Specialist degree graduates will:

  • Understand the organization and operation of business, the relationships of business to society, and types of businesses
  • Recognize the impact of marketing, the four components of the marketing mix, and strategic marketing decisions
  • Define management, functions of management, resources managers control, and the management process
  • Understand organizational design and structures
  • Discuss financial statement’s role in the business environment
  • Apply generally accepted accounting principles
  • Apply accounting information to business decisions

Executive Assistant degree graduates will:

  • Understand the organization and operation of business, the relationships of business to society, and types of businesses
  • Recognize the impact of marketing, the four components of the marketing mix, and strategic marketing decisions
  • Define management, functions of management, resource control, and the management process.
  • Understand organizational design and structures
  • Define Organizational Behavior (OB)
  • Demonstrate value of objective knowledge and skill development in the study of OB
  • Discuss financial statement’s role in the business environment
  • Apply generally accepted accounting principles
  • Apply accounting information to business decisions
  • Recognize the legal framework of business as it pertains to contracts
  • Recognize the purpose and logic of the law to improve decision making process within the frame work of the rules of law
  • Recognize internal and external factors that affect budget preparations
  • Prepare budgets and systems for organizing and administering the budgetary process

Administrative Assistant and Meeting/Event degree graduates will:

  • Demonstrate understanding of meetings, events, and conventions
  • Recognize relationship between the hospitality industry and individuals who plan meetings, conventions, and events
  • Explain technical differences among meetings, conventions, expositions, and special events
  • Demonstrate acquired skills and knowledge in execution of a simulated event and group sales
  • Explain the role of hospitality marketing management
  • Compare and contrast the "service product" approach to hospitality marketing to the traditional approach
  • Analyze the role of marketing in strategic hospitality planning
  • Appraise the roles of buying influences in the hospitality purchasing decision
  • Demonstrate the process of evaluating potential hotel market segments to choose target markets effectively
  • Judge the role of sales organizations and distribution methods or chains of supply as applied to hospitality products
  • Design a hospitality communication mix program including loyalty programs

Credit for Knowledge

OFTI offers students ann opportunity to earn credit for knowledge acquired through an occupation or an educational institution outside of COD by completing a proficiency exam. Students who demonstrate the knowledge needed to complete an OFTI course can gain college credit without taking the course.

Students can register for and take the following proficiency exams at the Testing Center located in the Berg Instructional Center on the Glen Ellyn Campus:

  • OFTI 1100 – Keyboarding & Document Fundamentals
  • OFTI 1105 – Speed Development Keyboarding
  • OFTI 1200 – MSOffice for Professional Staff
  • OFTI 1210 – Word Processing I

A student may take the proficiency exam one time only.  If the student fails the exam and still wishes to receive credit for the course, the student must enroll in the course. Contact the Testing Center or email OFTI OFTI Coordinator Professor Casey Emerich at millerc308@cod.edu with questions.

Frequently Asked Questions

A certificate focuses on the core curriculum of a program. These courses provide the information and skills necessary for performing the job duties of a specific profession. A degree includes the entire core curriculum, as well as a broad range of academic courses.

The decision to complete a certificate or a degree is a personal decision. Some students pursue a certificate because it takes less time to complete compared to a degree. Others pursue a certificate because they already have a degree and are seeking retraining or career advancement.

Degree seekers need to complete core curriculum as well as required academic courses. These students may want to transfer to a four-year school or university and pursue a bachelor's degree. Typically those who complete a degree demand a higher salary than those who do not.

The length of time it takes to complete a certificate or a degree depends on how many courses are taken each term. A degree is designed to be completed within two years if a student takes 16 hours each term (summer excluded). Students should always meet with an OFTI advisor to set up a course schedule.

Yes general advising can help you to get started. You should always meet with an OFTI faculty member to help you plan your courses and determine the course sequence and availability.

Prerequisites are courses (or demonstrated equivalent experience) that students must complete prior to enrolling in a similar higher-level course.

A prerequisite course provides the background necessary for the successful completion of a higher-level course. A higher-level course instructor assumes that a student has mastered the content of the prerequisite course. Generally, mastery of the content covered in a prerequisite course will improve a student's chances of successful performance in the higher-level course.

No every course is not offered every semester, but many OFTI courses are available each term. Basic courses are offered every semester. Courses are also offered in day, evening and online.

The rule of thumb is between one to three hours of homework each week for each semester hour of a course. For instance, a three-semester- hour course can expect to have three to nine hours of homework each week. The actual amount of time will depend on your skill level and understanding of the course material. Online courses can expect to spend an additional two to four hours each week to make up for the time not spent in the actual classroom.

An executive assistant performs administrative duties for executive management. Responsibilities may include screening calls, making travel and meeting arrangements, preparing reports and financial data, training and supervising other support staff, and customer relations. This position requires strong computer and Internet research skills. This individual must be flexible with excellent interpersonal skills, possess project coordination experience and the ability to work well with all levels of internal management and staff as well as outside clients and vendors.


An administrative assistant performs administrative and office support activities for multiple supervisors. Duties may include fielding telephone calls, receiving and directing visitors, word processing, filing, and faxing. Extensive software skills are required, as well as Internet research abilities and strong communication skills. Staff in this category also may have the title of department assistant, coordinator or associate.

A glossary of administrative support job descriptions is posted on the International Association of Administrative Professionals website.