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Your application has been submitted to the hiring department for review.

Application (STD 678)

The State application form for examinations and employment. It is available in hard copy (paper) or electronic through a CalCareer Account. It contains a person’s personal information, basic employment questions, education, work history, demographic/EEO data.

Applicant Invite

An invitation sent in the email to an applicant to establish an CalCareer Account, which will be attached to an established ECOS Profile.


Base Score

The Base Score received in an examination before any extra points are added.

Basis (Exam Basis)

The Basis in which an examination is being administered: Open; Open, Non-Promotional; and Promotional

Bilingual Employee

A bilingual employee has been certified by CalHR, or an authorized agent, as possessing sufficient fluency to provide services to the public in a non-English language. An employee working in a designated bilingual position is eligible for a pay differential.

Bilingual Position

A position designated by the department to provide non-English services to the public.


Job connection system for State of California retirees interested in working as retired annuitants to list their skill sets.


See “Exam Bulletin”



Employment system available for State of California Job Seekers. This systems provides for an Applicant portal allowing self-management and tracking of employment activities with various available employment tools.

Career Credits

Extra points awarded in Open, Non-Promotional examination to Civil Service Employees meeting the specified criteria. These additional points are added to their passing score in the examination.

Career Executive Assignments (CEA)

Government Code Section 18547 defines Career Executive Assignment as "an appointment to a high administrative and policy influencing position within the State civil service in which the incumbent's primary responsibility is the managing of a function or the rendering of management advice to top level administrative authority". Such a position can be established only in the top managerial levels of State service and is typified by broad responsibility for policy implementation and extensive participation in policy evolvement.

Cert Rank

The rank of an individual(s) on a specific Cert List.

Civil Service

The administration of government in which individuals are employed on the basis of professional merit as proven by competitive examinations.

Classification Code

The Code assigned to State of California Civil Service Classification.

Classification Specification (Class Spec)

The Civil Service Definition of a type of a classification. Typically Includes: a Class Title, Class Code, Description, KSAs, MQs, and other specifics.

Conditions of Employment (COE)

Conditions under which a successful applicant wishes to be considered for employment on an Eligibility Record. Conditions of Employment may include Geographical location, Tenure, Time Base, Department, and/or work type area/category (Preference Flags).

Contact (Letter)

See "Employment Contact"

Continuous (Filing Type)

An Examination that does not have an established final filing date and allows for individuals to submit an application without limitations until it is closed.




Acronym for: Examination and Certification Online System


Is the unique identifier of individuals regarding State Employment. This number is assigned to the ECOS Profile associated with an individual’s Records, tying them to the CalCareer Account.


Term used to describe a passing score received on an examination. In order to apply for employment with the State of California, list eligibility must be established for the classification. List eligibility is typically one year in length; however, for some examinations, list eligibility could be up to four years. When list eligibility expires, an applicant must reapply to re-establish eligibility.

Eligibility Record (Elig Record)

An individual record for a person who has been granted eligibility for a classification (typically from successfully completing an examination, but sometimes it can be created by a layoff situation)

Eligible List

An eligible list is a list of individuals with eligibility who can be considered for employment. Generally, the top three ranks (highest scores) are considered reachable and will be contacted first. The length of eligibility is listed as the “List Life” on the examination bulletin. Typically, eligibility is good for one year, but may be extended for up to four years. One must then retake the examination to re-establish list eligibility.

Eligible List Rank

The Rank of the individual(s) on the Eligible List.

Employment Contact

Letter sent to individuals on a Cert List to ascertain their interest in a specific position. This may be sent via CalCareer Accounts, or a hard copy will be mailed if a CalCareer Account does not exist.

Employment Inquiry

An old term used prior to CalCareer. With Implementation of CalCareer, Employment Contacts are used. Please see Employment Contact.

Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO)

Each state agency is responsible for implementing non-discrimination policies, procedures, and practices, and ensuring they are integrated into every aspect of employment. Equal employment opportunity is afforded to all applicants and employees without regard to age, ancestry, color, disability (mental or physical), engaging in a protected activity, gender, gender identity or expression, genetic information, marital status, medical condition, military veteran status, national origin, political affiliation, pregnancy, race, religion, sex, and sexual orientation.

Examination (Exam)

The examination bulletin includes the details for an individual classification or a group of related classes examination. The bulletin will include directions and details for the examination, how to apply, the admittance requirements, test type, and how the resultant eligibility list will be used.

Exempt Positions

These position are filled by election or appointment. They include members of boards and commissions, and appointees of the Governor. These officials are exempt from State civil service, and are often referred to as "exempt" officials.






Job Control

A number (example JC-####) that identifies each job posting. This number is located at the top of each job posting.

Job Examination Period (JEP)

The last part of the LEAP process, the Job Examination Period allows applicants to demonstrate knowledge, skills and abilities through on-the-job testing. Candidates who successfully complete the Job Examination Period are transitioned to the civil service classification for which they tested.

Job Postings

All the Detailed information of a specific Job advertised in CalCareer. The Job Postings from CalCareer replaced the old system known as “VPOS”.

Job Specifications

Details about minimum qualifications, education, etc.



Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities. The Scope of the KSAs required of a individual in a classification, are listed on the Classification Specification.



The Limited Examination and Appointment Program (LEAP) allows qualified persons with disabilities to obtain jobs in the California civil service through taking on-the-job performance examinations instead of traditional written examinations.

Limited Term

A temporary job appointment to last a certain number of months.

List Life

The length of time eligibility is in effect is listed as the “list life” on the examination bulletin. List life is typically 12 months and may be extended up to four years.

List Score

An individual's final score, including all applicable extra points, on an eligible list.


Minimum Qualifications (MQs)

The Minimum Qualifications (MQs) are the criteria an applicant must meet in the first Test component of an examination the Application Review. The MQs are located on the classification specification and must be posted on the examination bulletin.



Open Exam

An Examination being administered on an Open Basis. No distinction is made between State employees and non-State employees. Veteran Preference is awarded to all Veterans on the eligible list meeting the Criteria to receive the Preference.

Open, Non-Promotional Exam

An Examination being administered on an Open, Non-Promotional Basis. Qualifying State employees receive Career Credits. Veteran Preference is awarded to all Veterans on the eligible list meeting the Criteria to receive the Preference.



The period during which an employee demonstrates his/her ability to perform the job duties. After a job offer is accepted, an employee must pass probation to become a permanent State employee. For every classification, the probationary period can be either six months or twelve months. During this period, the manager/supervisor assesses the skills or knowledge the employee needs to develop and the guidance needed for an employee to succeed. An employee must demonstrate acceptable progress and the capabilities to fully perform at the expected level to pass probation.

Promotional Exam

An Examination being administered on a promotional basis. Applicants are required to meet the Entrance Requirement for the exam basis, typically working for the Department the examination is being administered, but there are some other means of meeting the criteria that are not as common.




See “Cert Rank” or “Eligible List Rank”

Reasonable Accommodation

Each State agency is required by Federal and State law to provide reasonable accommodation(s) when a job applicant or employee with a disability needs assistance in order to complete a selection process, perform the essential functions of a job, complete required training, or to benefit from employer sponsored events. The purpose of the accommodation(s) is to allow the person with the disability to compete or perform on as equal a basis as possible with persons without disabilities. This does not mean lodging accommodations.

Readiness Evaluation

The first part of the LEAP examination process, the Readiness Evaluation assesses an applicant’s ability to meet minimum qualifications for the job classification in which they wish to test.

Reasonable Accommodation

Reasonable accommodation may be provided for individuals with a physical or mental disability to apply for jobs and to perform the essential functions of their jobs unless it would cause an undue hardship. Reasonable accommodation can include, but is not limited to, modifications or adjustments to a job application process, modifications or adjustments to the work environment, and modifications or adjustments that enable an employee with a disability to enjoy equal benefits and privileges of employment as are enjoyed by other similarly situated employees without disabilities.


A Category of Eligible Lists. Individuals on these lists are entitled to have preferential consideration in hiring for a position meeting the criteria of their eligibility due to their loss of previous employment.


Eligibility to return to state service.  Government Code Section 19140 provides reinstatement eligibility if you previously held a State civil service position as a permanent or probationary employee, and separated from your position by (1) resignation, (2) service retirement, (3) absence without leave (AWOL), (4) accepting another civil service or exempt appointment without a break in continuity of State service, or (5) termination from a limited-term, temporary, Career Executive Assignment, or exempt appointment to which you were subsequently appointed without a break in service

Retired Annuitants

Retired annuitants are individuals who have retired from the State, but who have returned to work for the State on a temporary basis.

Rule 211

California Code of Regulations, Section 211, provides that a State employee dismissed by adverse action may participate in State civil service examinations only if he or she has obtained prior approval from the State Personnel Board's Executive Officer. Requests to participate in open examinations must be submitted in writing to the State Personnel Board. The decision to approve or deny a request to participate in an examination is based on the circumstances surrounding the dismissal as well as the type of position the dismissed employee is seeking. In addition, the State Personnel Board considers the employee's evidence of corrected behavior, and his/her ability to assume the responsibilities and duties associated with a return to State service. Dismissed State employees do not have reinstatement eligibility and may not apply for vacant positions. Dismissed State employees may seek access to employment within the State civil service system only under the provisions of Section 211 described previously.


Scoring and Ranking

Examination results are scored and applicants are placed in ranks according to their scores. Generally, only the first three ranks of individuals are accessible for hire. An individual’s ranking may change as hires are made and/or more individuals are added to the eligibility list.


Indicated in the Classification Reference Data. Identifies other classifications included in the classification Specification Document


Indicates an examination / eligibility list for use by all State Departments (All of State Service)

Specification (Spec)

See “Classification Specification”

Spot Location

A geographical location to which an examination / eligibility list is restricted. It is the purpose of a focused recruitment for a specific geographical location.

State Restriction of Appointment (SROA)

The surplus/SROA process helps prevent layoffs. When employees are facing layoffs, they go on a surplus/SROA list. Employees then have 120 days to find a new job. If, at the end of that time, they are actually laid off, they go on a reemployment list for their class. A department must hire employees from their department's reemployment list if one exists for the hiring class. If not, the department must contact any eligible surplus/SROA employees.


Refers to the entire state of California Geographic area


Refers to a sub-division of a department. A Subdivision has been given its own hiring authority from the Legislature or Governor's office.


Take and Successfully Pass

After participation in the examination, results will be provided to you, including a final score and the number of months of list eligibility. After successful participation, you can apply for job vacancies within that classification.

Temporary Authorization Utilization (TAU) Appointment

A temporary appointment may be made to a position for which there is no employment list.  No person may serve in one or more positions under temporary appointment longer than 9 months in 12 consecutive months.


The Tenure in which an appointment is made. i.e. Limited Term and Permanent

Test Component

A testing mechanism utilized in an Examination. Each Examination must have at least one test component, but may utilize multiple test components.

Test Type

Refers to the Test(s) being given for the employment examination. The most common Test types are:

  • Agility/Physical Ability: For law enforcement and other jobs, physical ability tests are commonly given and are frequently combined with vision and hearing tests. These are usually given just prior to hiring.
  • Education and Experience Evaluation: The examination consists of an evaluation of a candidate's application; no interview is conducted.
  • Internet/Automated Examination: On-line examination where a candidate responds to education and experience questions, or schedules to appear at a test site to take a computer-based test.
  • LEAP: The Limited Examination and Appointment Program (LEAP) allows qualified persons with disabilities to obtain jobs in the California civil service through taking on-the-job performance examinations instead of traditional written examinations.
  • Oral Interview: Also known as a "Qualifications Appraisal Panel (QAP)" Facing a panel of two to three people, a candidate responds to questions regarding education and experience, possibly situational/hypothetical scenarios.
  • Performance Test: Primarily used for clerical and trades classifications, a candidate demonstrates knowledge of tools and materials or the ability to operate machines or equipment.
  • Supplemental Application/Achievement Rating Test: The examination consists of essay questions sent to a candidate that is to be completed and returned before the oral portion of the examination to provide supplemental information to assist the interview panel. 
  • Written Test: Typically consists of multiple-choice questions.

Time Base

Time Base is the expected hours to be worked and in what fashion for a position. i.e. Full-time, Part-Time, and Intermittent

Training and Development Assignment (T&D)

T&D assignments allow the temporary loan or assignment of employees within or between units or programs for periods not to exceed two years, for the purposes of training. T&D assignments are used to broaden the work experience of an employee with the intent of increasing their skills and abilities and/or work experience.


Under State Personnel Board Rules 250 and 430-433, you may transfer from one job class to another without examination if you meet the minimum qualifications of the class to which you wish to transfer, the levels of duties, responsibility, and salary of the two classes are substantially the same and the two classes are not in the same series. The transfer must not constitute a promotion, and the State may establish policies to limit transfer to certain classes.


Instructional guides or tools available to applicants on specific topics.


Upward Mobility

Upward Mobility is the planned development and advancement of employees from positions in low-paying occupations to entry technical, professional, and administrative positions within State departments. It is not, as commonly thought, the promotion of employees up through the ranks, from working level positions to supervisory and managerial positions.



A job vacancy is an unfilled job opening for which departments/agencies are actively trying to recruit new employees.

Veterans’ Preference (Vets’ Preference)

Veterans' Preference is awarded in all examinations administered on an open basis to all Veterans meeting the criteria. Effective 1/1/14, Veterans' Preference places all individuals placed on an Open Eligible list meeting the Veterans' Preference criteria in Rank 1 of the Eligible list.

VPOS (Vacant Positions)

Previous system used to post job vacancies. Job Postings are now viewed through CalCareer. See Job Postings.