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Four Steps to Writing Responses to Knowledge, Skills and Abilities (KSAs)

Four Steps to Writing Responses to Knowledge, Skills and Abilities (KSAs)

Center for Disease Control

Step 3. Analyze the experiences you have identified

This is where you scrutinize the experiences you identified in step 2 and zero in on the things that really matter in what you do or have done. It is where you identify how you use the knowledge, skill, or ability in your job or experiences. This kind of information is at the core of the KSA process. (This process is sometimes called “Task Analysis.”) You need to ask specific questions about the experience you have identified. The answers that you come up with will be used to complete the actual writing of the KSA (Step 4). Examples of the kinds of questions you need to ask about your experiences follow:

What kind of knowledge or skills do I use in my job?

What are the steps, procedures, practices, rules, policies, theories, principles or concepts that I use in my job?

How do I apply the knowledge, principles or concepts that I use in my job?

How do I apply the knowledge that I have to accomplish my work?

What kind of supervision do I receive?

How is my work assigned?

What is my responsibility to accomplish work?

How independent are my actions?

How is my work reviewed?

What guidelines do I use to accomplish my work?

Are the instructions that I use to perform my work in written or oral form or both?

Do I use procedural manuals?

What other written procedures do I use?

What kind of oral instructions do I use to perform my work?

How much judgement do I have to use to apply the guidelines for my job?

Are the guidelines I use very easily applied or do they require interpretation?

How difficult are they to interpret?

How complex is my job?

What is the nature of the work that I do?

For example: Tasks are clear-cut and directly related to each other; or the work involves different and unrelated processes and methods; or the work consists of broad functions and processes of an administrative or professional nature?

How difficult is it to identify what needs to be done?

For example: Little or no choice in deciding what needs to be done; or it depends on an analysis of the situation as there are many alternatives; or extensive analysis is required to even define the nature of the problem.

How difficult or original is the work I do?

How does my work affect other processes or individuals?

Who do I have contact with on a daily basis?

Why do I have contact with these individuals?

What is my role in these discussions or meetings?

For example: To provide information; to receive information; to influence or advise someone; to convince someone of something.

If you have done a thorough job on steps 1, 2 and 3 in this process, you now have a good understanding of the KSAs and lots of facts about your experiences. You also have a better understanding of these experiences. You are now ready for the last step.

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