ACT WorkKeys Curriculum, Assessment and National

Careers Readiness Certificate®



National Career Readiness Certificate Available for Arkansas Students

The ACT WorkKeys assessment was approved by the State Board of Education to meet Arkansas Act 319 of 2021.  The WorkKeys assessment provides high school students the opportunity to earn a nationally-recognized work readiness certificate before they graduate.

The WorkKeys assessment measures the essential work skills needed for success in jobs across industries and occupations and represents work readiness through the National Career Readiness Certificate (NCRC®). The primary purpose of the NCRC is to provide students with a workplace certification that represents their knowledge and skills in Applied Math, Graphic Literacy, and Workplace Documents.

Preparing Students for the Assessment

  • PACT WorkKeys provides an online curriculum designed to prepare students for the assessment in the following areas:
    • Applied Math
    • Graphic Literacy
    • Workplace Documents
  • Placement into specific English Learner services remains a local decision. LEAs are expected to offer appropriate English Language Development services and meaningful access to content area instruction to English Learners.
  • The LPAC must also determine the appropriate classroom and assessment accommodations to be provided to the student due to their English Learner needs, if any.

Benefits of WorkKeys and the NCRC for Students

  • The NCRC is a portable credential with no expiration date; it verifies to employers that a student possesses the workplace skills needed to be successful.:
    • Bronze - indicates the skills required for 17% of ACT-profiled jobs
    • Silver - indicates the skills required for 69% of ACT-profiled job
    • Gold - indicates the skills required for 93% of ACT-profiled jobs
    • Platinum - indicates the skills required for 99% of ACT-profiled jobs
  • All students, college or career bound, benefit from the WorkKeys curriculum and outcomes, including the connection to the ACT exam.
  • Many employers across Arkansas are using the nationally-recognized credential as a pre-employment requirement for the application process.
  • Students obtain employment after high school graduation and are offered higher paying positions because they have earned the NCRC.
  • WorkKeys becomes a critical component of every student’s success plan.

For more information, please contact:

Trinity Jones, Program Advisor
Arkansas Department of Education
Division of Elementary and Secondary Education
Office of Student Assessment
Four Capitol Mall, Suite 301-B
Little Rock, AR 72201
Phone: 501-682-0705

Mary Beck, Program Coordinator
Arkansas Department of Education
Division of Career and Technical Education
Career Readiness/Work-Based Learning Office
Three Capitol Mall, Suite 401
Little Rock, AR 72201
Phone: 501-682-4834



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