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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

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Qualifications and What They Mean
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The Agricultural Research Service (ARS) strives to hire the best qualified people for its positions. The Federal Office of Personnel Management establishes basic qualifications for every occupation in the Federal Government.

ARS vacancy announcements:

  • Describe the minimum qualifications required for each position.

  • Detail any other qualifications, called selective factors, that candidates must also have to be considered eligible for each position.

Don't apply for a position if you don't meet both the required minimum qualifications and any selective factors described in the vacancy announcement.

If you do meet both the minimum qualifications and selective factors, you may use your experience and education to write the required response to the KSAs (knowledge, skills, and abilities), which are listed in the vacancy announcement.

Your experience and education help to make you "basically qualified" for some positions and "highly qualified" for others.

As long as you meet the minimum qualifications and the selective factors, the closer your experience and education match the position's requirements, the better your chance to be rated "highly qualified."


Last Modified: 2/27/2003
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