Civil Service Terms Glossary

Admission Card: Notification sent to all candidates in an assembled test informing them of when and where to report for the test and the materials needed.

Application:
Form or forms a candidate must submit. A completed application form is required to register for an examination.

Candidate Record of Answers:
Form on which candidates taking a multiple choice examination are allowed to record their answers for the purpose of comparing them to the proposed or final key.

Certified List:
The Civil Service List or portion of the Civil Service List officially sent to City agencies and from which they can hire.

Civil Service Law:
State Law which mandated competitive exams where practicable to fill positions based on the principles of merit and fitness.

Committee on Manifest Errors:
A panel assembled to review appeals submitted by candidates regarding their ratings on an examination.

DCAS:
The Department of Citywide Administrative Services.

DCPS: Division of Citywide Personnel Services.

Exams:

Education and Experience (E&E) Examinations are used to fill positions in which specific experience, more than general knowledge and ability, is a better indicator of a candidate's qualification for a particular position. E&E Examinations are usually offered for "professional" positions.
Multiple-Choice Examinations are generally offered for Open Competitive titles or entry level positions to the City's workforce. These exams tend to consist of 40 to 150 multiple-choice questions. The candidate records answers on a scan-tron sheet by coloring in circles with a No. 2 pencil.
Practical/Physical Examinations test a candidate's skill or fitness in performing a specific task. Frequently, these exams are given in addition to a multiple-choice examination.

Filing Period: The specific time period during which individuals are able to register to take a specific examination. The time usually lasts approximately three weeks. The City does not accept registration for an examination before or after the defined filing period.

Final Key:
The answer key or rating guide in an examination adopted after all protests have been evaluated and by which all candidates are scored.

NOE:
The Official Notice of Examination (NOE) explains the specific details of an examination. This includes test date, qualifications required to take the examination and topics the exam will cover. Read the NOE carefully before registering for an examination.

One in Three Rule: Under New York State Civil Service Law, this rule provides City agencies with the discretion when hiring to select one of the three eligibles scoring highest on the ranked eligible list of exam passers.

Open Competitive Exam: Exams open to anyone meeting the minimum qualifications as described in the official Notice of Examination.

Permanent Civil Service Status: City employees who have been appointed from a civil service exam and passed the mandated probationary period. Persons with permanent Civil Service Status may take promotion civil service exams if they qualify.

Promotional Exam: Exams open to permanent civil service employees, i.e.: those who have been appointed from a civil service exam and passed the mandated probationary period.

Proposed Key: Answers in an examnation by which DCAS proposes to grade candidates. Candidates are allowed to submit challenges or protests to the Proposed Key.

Protest Period: A 30 day period during which candidates are permitted to present challenges to the Proposed Key.

Selective Certification: A sub-list of a list of eligibles consisting of those eligibles who possess special skills, training, certifications etc. This list may be used by an agency when hiring for a position that requires special training, skills, etc.