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What is a KSA?

A KSA is a statement explaining your current level of competence for specific job qualifications. KSA stands for:

Knowledge – is an organized body of information obtained through education or previous experience, e.g., Biology, Accounting, etc.

Skills - is a manual, verbal or mental trait that is directly observable, quantifiable and measurable, e.g., typing.

Abilities – is the aptitude to perform an observable activity which results in a product or consequence, e.g., ability to communicate orally.

Why do you need KSA's?

The reviewer WILL NOT infer your specific abilities and accomplishments from your resume. A KSA statement gives specific accomplishments and abilities tailored to the job qualification. You can use this space to expand on the skills you've listed in your resume and give specific examples of your experience. Your application will be rated according to your responses to the KSA's.

Where to find KSA's in the USAJOBS Vacancy Announcement

Look under the “How to Apply” tab to review what you need to send.

how to apply image tab

Look under the “Qualifications and Evaluations” tab to view the specific KSA's for the vacancy.

qualifications and evaluation image tab

Tips and Tricks for Writing KSA's

  • Be Concise
  • Be Specific
  • Use examples to describe your experience
  • Use Action Words (A useful list of Action Words)
  • Review, Revise, and Proofread
  • Do not use acronyms
  • Remember to include your relevant training, awards, and volunteer experience where appropriate (even if it is listed in your resume)
  • Do not copy the language from the position description
This page last reviewed on March 9, 2012

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