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EIU Department of Employment and Examinations

Employment and Examinations - Hiring Process

We are committed to providing unified, professional services that make Eastern Illinois University a better place to work and to learn.

Employment positions available at EIU include:

  • Administrative and Professional
  • Faculty
  • Civil Service
  • Administrative and Professional Positions

    Administrative and Professional (A/P) positions typically require a Bachelor's, Masters or Doctorate degree as specified by the position description.

    A/P positions are managed by the EIU President's office or the Vice President's office overseeing the position. In addition, qualified candidates for A/P positions are screened, interviewed and selected by the Chairperson or hiring supervisor. Vacancies are advertised on the EIU website at
  • Faculty Positions

    EIU faculty positions typically require a Masters or Doctorate degree as specified by the position description. New faculty openings are managed by the EIU Provost's office. In addition, qualified candidates are screened, interviewed and selected by the Screening Committee Chairperson and/or the Department Chairperson.

    Vacancies are advertised on the EIU website at
  • Civil Service Positions

    The application and hiring process for Civil Service positions differs from processes used to recruit A/P or Faculty candidates.

    The EIU HR Employment/Examinations Office administers exams and employment services in accordance with the State Universities Civil Service Statute (SUCSS). We coordinate the recruiting, advertising, and employment and administer civil service examinations, maintain registers for civil service classifications and process personnel transactions for new hires, promotions, extra help, leaves of absence, and separations according to Federal, State, and University guidelines.

    In addition to following hiring rules established by the Federal and State government, we adhere to guidelines established by SUCSS, Board of Trustees regulations and Internal Governing Policies. Our goal is to provide EIU with the best candidates for Civil Service appointments.

    In addition to accepting applications and administering Civil Service Examinations, we provide the departments with the information they need to fill their Civil Service vacancies.  This EIU HR EmploymenUExaminations booklet addresses the Civil Service application and hiring process to help you to be successful in your job search.
  • Extra-Help Positions

    Occasionally, Extra-Help positions become available for qualified applicants. Extra-Help positions may be part-time or full-time and last no more than 900 hours. After 900 hours, an employee must take a 30-day break before returning to an Extra-Help position.

    Extra-Help positions are paid hourly and do not include benefits.

    If you are interested in an Extra-Help position, inform the HR representative when you bring your application to the EIU HR Department. The same application is used for Extra Help and for regular Civil Service. You may work Extra Help while you are attempting to secure a regular Civil Service job.

    You should update your application once each year to remain on our Extra Help List.


Applying for a Civil Service Job 

Civil Service openings are advertised online; however, interested candidates should test for any EIU Civil Service classification at any time. Candidates may test for a classification even if a position is not yet vacant. Your scores will be kept on file. Then, the highest-scoring candidates will be considered for an interview for the position when it becomes open. In order to apply for a Civil Service position at EIU, complete these steps. 

  • 1. Complete an Application

    Applications may be made online at

    Fill in all entries including personal and general information, military service, education and training, and employment information. Then, review your application to make sure you have included everything. EIU Civil Service applications are also available at the HR EmploymenU Examinations office located in room 2020 in the Old Main building on the EIU campus. Office hours are Monday through Friday from 8 am - 4:30 pm.

    Many positions require a background investigation. A conviction record will not necessarily bar employment.

    Currently, you do not need to be an Illinois resident to apply for Civil Service positions.

    Review your application to make sure you have included everything. List all present and past employment, beginning with your most recent. Be sure to list the name used for records during that employment. List periods of unemployment of more than three months and state the reason. 
  • 2. Select a Job Classification

    EIU has an open application process. Do not wait for a vacancy. Qualified applicants may schedule a test at any time for job classification titles used by Eastern Illinois University. Review the job classifications and requirements to determine which jobs best match your skills and experience.

    A list of job vacancies is available at Click on each classification to see a description and qualifications. The same list is also available in the Employment & Examinations office. After reviewing the EIU job classifications, select the job for which you'd like to test. You must qualify for a classification before you can test for it. Each classification has a separate exam.
  • 3. Submit Your Application and Schedule an Exam

    Once you have submitted your online application, an 
    employment officer will review your application and work 
    experience to determine if you are qualified for your selected 
    classifications. You will be notified by email of any issues 
    and when you can schedule your examination. If you 
    complete a paper application, bring your completed 
    application to the HR Employment/Examinations office on 
    Tuesday or Thursday between 8:30 am and 4 pm. You 
    should submit your resume or transcripts and DD 214 in addition to your application. Be aware that your resume does NOT substitute for a thorough explanation of your work experience on your application.

    NOTE: Keep your application up-to-date with current employment information, resume and transcripts. Also, any changes to your name, address, email address, or phone number must be reported to the HR Employment & Examinations office. Your name and score will be removed from the register if we cannot locate you.
  • 4. Take an Exam

    A Civil Service exam may consist of a written examination, oral test, physical test, aptitude test, or other appropriate tests and/or a rating of experience and training or a combination of any of these examination aspects. These exams are used to determine the rank of all applicants seeking a Civil Service position.

    Depending on the job classification, you may be given a paper test or a test presented on a computer. Some job classifications require a typing test.

    To prepare for your test, go to State Universities Civil Service System website at This site displays a list of employment and test tips including study guides and practice typing tests.

    On the day of the exam, come to the HR EmploymenU Examinations office, room 2020 Old Main to take your exam. We suggest you do not bring anything to the Examinations office that you will not need for your exam. Arrive a few minutes early. If you are unable to take your exam or need to reschedule, call the HR EmploymenU Examinations office at 217-581-3911 before the scheduled test time. You can obtain a parking pass at the University Police Department on Seventh St. and Grant Ave.

    When taking the exam, read instructions thoroughly. Review your answers and check for any missed questions. When you are done, notify the HR representative. Depending on the type of exam, the HR representative may grade your exam and provide your rank on the register while you wait, or send your grade and rank to you by mail. If you are a veteran, you may receive additional points added to your score if the appropriate documents have been provided to the Employment & Examinations personnel.

    You can retake an exam up to three times within a 12-month period to try to improve your score and rank on the register. To retake an exam, you must wait at least 30 days. 


When a Civil Service Job Vacancy Occurs

When a job becomes open, qualified applicants are notified. 

  • 1. Access Your Score

    Passing scores are placed on a register for the job classification in descending order. The higher your score, the more likely you will be contacted when there is a job vacancy.

    Your scores will remain active until the examination is changed, you fail to respond to a notification, or you ask for your scores to be removed. Generally speaking, scores remain active on a register for a minimum of two years.

    A Job Register lists the names of candidates who have tested for a specific job classification in order of score. A higher score takes a higher rank. In other words, a candidate with a score of 100 may be ranked number 1, whereas a candidate with a score of 85 may be ranked number 4. Generally, the top three interested candidates are selected to interview for an open position.
  • 2. Respond to a Vacancy Notification

    When a position becomes vacant, top-ranking candidates are contacted by the HR Employment/Examinations office. If you do not respond to this notification in a timely manner, your name will be deleted from the register. It is your responsibility to keep your contact information up-to-date with our office.

    An HR representative will schedule interviews with the hiring department who then interviews and selects the best candidate. Your HR representative will make the job offer to the selected candidate. Depending on the position, employment may be subject to passing a background investigation, physical fitness, and a drug test.

    Examinations provide a system that is fair and objective for all applicants. For a particular examination, applicants answer similar questions or are asked to submit information. Applicants receive a score or scores based on the same examination components. This gives all candidates an equal opportunity to be placed on an employment register, contacted for an interview, and potentially be selected. 
  • 3. Interview for a Position

    After you are contacted about an applicable vacancy and have confirmed that you are interested, if you are among the top interested candidates, an HR representative will schedule your interview with the hiring department. Be sure to bring any materials you want the hiring department to have, such as an updated resume, a list of references, or work samples.

    Arrive at the interview a few minutes early and be prepared to answer questions about your education, work experience and qualifications. For more information about what to expect from an interview, refer to Tips for Success on this page.
  • 4. Join the EIU Team

    When the hiring department decides who to hire, they'll contact the HR department. If you have been selected, an HR representative will contact you with a job offer. The HR representative will inform you of the pay rate, hours, and any additional information.

    Upon acceptance of the position, if a background, physical, or drug test is required, an HR representative will make arrangements for these to be completed and a start date will be agreed on.

    Also, before starting your new job, you'll need to complete new hire paperwork at the HR office. This includes an Employment Eligibility Verification (1-9) Form. The University is required to have a completed Form 1-9 by the first day of employment and before any payroll or computer access can be processed. You must bring several items of identification with you in order to process this form. Usually, a driver's license and a certified birth certificate or Social Security Card will suffice.

    • Background Check Form: A background investigation is required for all employees hired into "positions of trust". The form allows the University to initiate a background investigation. Results must be received by the University before you may begin work. 
    • Personal Data Card: This card provides basic information for your new personnel file.
    • Data Form: The State of Illinois and the Federal government require the University to gather and report certain data.
    • Ethics Training: To save time on your first day, you may complete Ethics Training at: This training MUST be completed as soon as possible but no later than 30 days after you begin work.
    After new hire paperwork has been completed, you'll be directed to the HR Benefits Office to complete applicable benefit forms, and then the HR Payroll Office to complete the Employee's Withholding Allowance Certificate (W-4) and an Authorization Agreement for Automatic Payments to set up electronic funds transfer. Bring a voided check with you.

    Welcome to the EIU Team! 


Probationary Period

The State Universities Civil Service System requires a probationary period of no less than six months and no longer than twelve months for all Civil Service new hires and promotional hires. During this period you are observed and evaluated for effective job performance. 

  • Learn more about the Probationary Period

    During the probationary period, you will receive two or more job performance reviews. The first is at the midpoint of the probationary period, usually at the end of the third month. The second occurs near the end of the probationary period, usually at the end of the fifth month. At the completion of the probationary period, you begin to accrue seniority and you can request that any scores you have in the promotional line be changed to promotional scores.

    NOTE: The probationary period is waived for reassigned employees who have already completed probation in the same class.

    Although you accrue vacation and sick time during your initial probationary period, you are prohibited from taking vacation time without approval from your supervisor and Human Resources. After you have completed initial probation, vacation time must be scheduled with your supervisor. In addition, you may test for other Civil Service positions during the probationary period; however, scores obtained during the probationary period are stored in the register as original entry test scores. After the probationary period is completed, you should contact the EIU HR office and request that original entry scores in your job class promotional line be reclassified as promotional.


Civil Service Career Advancement 

There are four ways you may advance your EIU Civil Service employment career path.

  • 1. Promotion

    The State Universities Civil Service System includes numerous job classifications and dozens of promotional lines. At any time, you may test for another position. To do so, you must meet the job classification qualifications to test for any position.

    For example, if you are hired into an Accountant I position, you may test for an Accountant II position if you are qualified. If an Accountant II position becomes vacant, you may be considered.

    Promotional scores are moved to the top of the register. In other words, if you have a passing promotional score, you'll be ahead of any original entry scores for an interview when a position becomes vacant. If you have previously tested for the higher class, you must request your score be changed to a promotional score as soon as you complete probation. 
  • 2. Desk Audit

    If you feel you are performing tasks in your current position associated with a higher job classification, a Desk Audit may be initiated to analyze whether or not the position should be reclassified to a higher level. An auditor will review your job description and analyze your tasks, duties, and responsibilities. If the audit determines that you are performing at a higher job level, the position may be reclassified at a higher level. Accordingly, you will be promoted to the higher job classification after you successfully pass the examination. 
  • 3. Reassignment

    In some cases, Civil Service employees may request to be reassigned to another department while maintaining the same job classification. For more information about submitting a reassignment or bid request, contact the EIU HR Employment & Examinations Department.
  • 4. Temporary Upgrade

    In some situations, your job classification may be temporarily upgraded for up to 30 consecutive workdays. During this period, you perform a different job at a higher classification level.

    To initiate an upgrade, your supervisor must submit a Temporary Upgrade Form to the EIU Human Resources Department. In most cases, you must also pass any applicable Civil Service Examination. 
  • 5. Applying for another Job Classification

    At any time you may test for a job classification as long as you meet the State Civil Service testing qualifications. Your passing score will be placed on an active job register. If your score is high enough, you may be contacted when a position becomes vacant. Your scores will remain active until the examination is changed, you fail to reply to notifications, or you ask for your scores to be removed.


Tips for Success

There are several books and resources online about how to be successful in your career. Below are a few tips to help you in your job search at EIU. 

  • 1. Preparing to Take an Exam

  • 2. Taking an Exam

    • Read all exam directions and instructions carefully.
    • Never assume you know what the directions say.
    • Listen closely to any verbal instructions.
    • Focus on answering the questions, not on your overall performance.
    • Budget your time. Don't rush. Take your time.
    • Relax.
    • Stay on track. Read and answer one question at a time.
    • If you go blank, skip the question and continue on to the next question. Return to the unanswered question later.
    • For multiple-choice questions, read all the options first, then eliminate the most obvious.
    • Although exam monitors cannot answer questions about the exam itself, they can assist you if something goes wrong: if there is a defect in your exam booklet, or if you have to leave the room for a legitimate purpose. Raise your hand and a monitor will assist you. If someone or something is distracting you, bring it to the monitor's attention. 
    • Do not look at the work of other people in the room or you may be disqualified.
  • 3. Taking a Typing Exam

    • View the onscreen demo before beginning.
    • Take the practice tests before taking the typing exam.
    • Pace yourself. Remember you should be typing the orange words.
    • The following examinations require a typing test:
      • Office Support Series (Assistant, Associate, Specialist, Manager, Administrator)
      • Clerical Assistant, Clerk, Chief Clerk, Staff Clerk, Administrative Clerk
      • Admissions/Records Specialist I, II
      • Human Resource Assistant, Representative
      • Printing Production Assistant
      • Routing Dispatcher I, II
      • Television Broadcast Equipment Operator 
  • 4. Taking a Paper Exam

    • Do not mark more than one answer for each question on a multiple-choice exam.
    • Refer to your exam materials for information on which exam booklets and problems you are to answer.
    • Make sure the choice you mark on your answer sheet matches the question you are answering in the test booklet.
    • Mark your answer sheet carefully and make sure your marks completely fill the spaces.
    • Avoid making stray pencil marks on your answer sheet. We may interpret these marks to be your answers.
    • When you are finished, return all the exam materials to the Exam Monitor including scrap paper and any other materials such as your resume.
  • 5. Taking a Test on a Computer

    • If you are uncertain of how to use a mouse or navigate through the screen, ask the Exam Monitor for assistance.
    • Identify the correct answer on the screen and click the mouse button.
    • Refer to your exam materials for information on which exam booklets and problems you are to answer.
    • When you are finished, return all the exam materials to the Exam Monitor including scrap paper and any other materials such as your resume.
  • 6. Preparing for an Interview

    • Research Eastern Illinois University. Know who you are working for, and what we stand for.
    • Reread the EIU job classification for which you are testing.
    • Display transcripts, licenses, resume, references, or referral letters in a portfolio.
    • Practice answering interview questions at home. For example, ''Tell me about yourself?" "What are your strengths and weaknesses?" "Why should I hire you?"
    • Prepare a list of questions ready to ask at the end of your interview.
    • If you are unfamiliar with the EIU campus, locate the building where your interview is scheduled and find where you will park. A campus map is located at
  • 7. Dressing for an Interview

    • Dress professionally.
    • Wear professional shoes.
    • Use minimal perfume and cologne.
    • It is better to be over-dressed than under-dressed.
  • 8. Interviewing for a Job

    • Arrive a few minutes before the scheduled interview.
    • If the interviewer offers to shake hands, then shake hands. Shake hands with a moderate grip lasting only a couple of seconds, do not squeeze the interviewer's hand, shake limply, or pump your arm up and down while shaking. Look into the interviewer's eyes and smile while briefly shaking hands.
    • Sit up straight, listen, and show interest in the interviewer.
    • Make eye contact with the interviewer.
    • Answer questions the best you can.
    • Take notes.
    • Be polite to everyone.
    • Use good posture.
    • Things not to bring on an interview:
      • Cell phone
      • Cigarettes
      • Gum
      • Soda, water, or coffee



If you have any questions or concerns about your visit with the HR Employment & Examinations office or the hiring process, please contact us by email at or by calling 217-581-3911.

If you believe you are qualified for a position, but were denied an examination, you can appeal directly to the Assistant Manager of Human Resources by calling 217-581-7653. 

Related Pages

Contact Information

EIU Employment

Old Main Room 2020
Fax: 217-581-3614

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