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Operating Manual for Qualification Standards for General Schedule Positions

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Policies and Instructions

Technical Notes and Updates

This section of the Manual is included to highlight special staffing requirements or provisions . Regular users of the Manual may also want to retain their own notes here for ready reference when questions arise about recurring issues.

Special Staffing Situations

Attorney Positions (GS-905 and GS-1222): The U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) is prohibited by law from examining for attorney positions or establishing qualification requirements for them. Therefore, Federal agencies that employ attorneys set their own requirements.

Air Force and Army Reserve Technician (ART) Positions: These positions require the appropriate military reserve status. Qualifications criteria for these positions are currently updated in connection with examining delegation agreements. Installations staffing ART positions should consult the appropriate office in their chain of command if they need further information.

Aerospace Technology Positions with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA): The legislation that established NASA permitted special staffing incentives for aerospace technology positions in a variety of engineering and scientific fields. Information about the requirements for positions filled through the Aerospace Technology program may be obtained from NASA.

Department of Defense (DOD) Acquisition Positions: The Defense Acquisition Workforce Improvement Act requires that Defense civilian acquisition personnel in the Contracting Series, GS-1102, and other acquisition-related positions meet specific educational criteria or the equivalent as determined by DOD. Information about these requirements may be obtained from DOD.

Maximum Entry Age: Under title 5 U.S.C. 3307, agencies are authorized to establish a maximum entry age for original appointment to law enforcement officer, firefighter, and U.S. Park Police positions. A maximum entry age has also been established under this statutory provision for original appointment to air traffic controller positions at terminals and centers. Information about maximum entry age limits will be provided to applicants by the employing agencies.

Panama Canal Employment System: The legislation that established the Panama Canal Commission authorized that Commission and other Federal agencies with employees in the Republic of Panama to establish qualification standards for positions covered by the Panama Canal Employment System. OPM qualification standards are used for many positions; however, alternate requirements are permissible as determined by the employing agency.

Department of Veterans Affairs Qualification Standards: Under title 38 U.S.C. 7402, the Secretary of Veterans Affairs has the authority to establish qualification standards for a variety of occupations, primarily those involving health care. The list that follows identifies the occupations/positions for which the Department of Veterans Affairs has approved use of the OPM qualification standards in lieu of establishing separate standards under its authority. In some cases, approval of the OPM standard is for use in conjunction with a VA standard. Those occupations or positions are so noted. The list will be updated periodically as changes occur.

Series Title Limitation
GS-101 Social Science Series  
GS-181 Psychology Aid and Technician Series Approved for Psychology Aid positions only
GS-184 Sociology Series  
GS-186 Social Services Aid and Assistant Series  
GS-189 Recreation Aid and Assistant Series  
GS-301 Miscellaneous Administration and Program Series Approved for positions other than Rehabilitation Medicine Coordinator
GS-340 Program Management Series  
GS-401 General Biological Science Series  
GS-404 Biological Technician Series  
GS-405 Pharmacology Series  
GS-413 Physiology Series  
GS-415 Toxicology Series  
GS-437 Horticulture Series  
GS-440 Genetics Series  
GS-601 General Health Science Series Approved for positions other than Nuclear Medicine Technologist
GS-621 Nursing Assistant Series  
GS-622 Medical Supply Aide and Technician Series  
GS-625 Autopsy Assistant Series  
GS-630 Dietitian and Nutritionist Series Approved for use in conjunction with VA standard
GS-636 Rehabilitation Therapy Assistant Series  
GS-637 Manual Arts Therapist Series  
GS-638 Recreation/Creative Arts Therapist Series  
GS-639 Educational Therapist Series  
GS-640 Health Aid and Technician Series  
GS-642 Nuclear Medicine Technician Series Approved for use in conjunction with VA standard
GS-644 Medical Technologist Series  
GS-645 Medical Technician Series  
GS-646 Pathology Technician Series  
GS-647 Diagnostic Radiologic Technologist Series Approved for use in conjunction with VA standard
GS-648 Therapeutic Radiologic Technologist Series Approved for use in conjunction with VA standard
GS-649 Medical Instrument Technician Series  
GS-651 Respiratory Therapist Series  
GS-661 Pharmacy Technician Series  
GS-664 Restoration Technician Series  
GS-665 Speech Pathology and Audiology Series  
GS-667 Orthotist and Prosthetist Series  
GS-669 Medical Records Administration Series  
GS-670 Health System Administration Series  
GS-671 Health System Specialist Series  
GS-672 Prosthetic Representative Series Approved for use in conjunction with VA standard
GS-673 Hospital Housekeeping Management Series  
GS-679 Medical Clerk Series  
GS-681 Dental Assistant Series Approved for use in conjunction with VA standard
GS-682 Dental Hygiene Series  
GS-683 Dental Laboratory Aid and Technician Series  
GS-690 Industrial Hygiene Series  
GS-1020 Illustrating Series  
GS-1101 General Business and Industry Series  
GS-1301 General Physical Science Series  
GS-1306 Health Physics Series  
GS-1310 Physics Series  
GS-1320 Chemistry Series  
GS-1411 Library Technician Series  
GS-1701 General Education and Training Series  
GS-1715 Vocational Rehabilitation Series  

OPM's Student Trainee qualification standard has also been approved for use under the Department of Veterans Affairs' title 38 authority.