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This Position Is No Longer Available

Job Title:  Interdisciplinary: Historian(Architectural)/Architect, GS-0170/0808-11/12
Agency:  Commission of Fine Arts
Job Announcement Number:  CFA-KN-14-MM1128874(DEU)

This position is closed and no longer accepting online applications through USAJOBS.

The contents of the announcement can still be viewed.
$63,091.00 to $98,305.00 / Per Year
Friday, May 30, 2014 to Monday, June 23, 2014
Full Time - Permanent
Few vacancies in the following location:
Washington DC, DC View Map
United States Citizens
Public Trust - Background Investigation


**This announcement has been amended to extend the closing date to 06/23/14.

The Commission of Fine Arts, an independent agency, established in 1910 by Act of Congress, is charged with giving expert advice to the President, Congress, and heads of departments and agencies of the federal and District of Columbia governments on matters of design and aesthetics, as they affect the federal interest and preserve the dignity of the nation’s capital. The Commission consists of seven “well qualified judges of the fine arts,” who are appointed by the President and serve for a term of four years.

If selected you will serve as a staff Architect or Historian for the Commission of Fine Arts located in Washington, DC.

The Commission of Fine Arts has determined that the duties of this position are not suitable for telework.


This vacancy is also announced as CFA-KN-14-MM1128877(MP) for those applicants who wish to apply and be considered under Merit Promotion procedures (i.e. current competitive service employees, have reinstatement eligibility for the competitive service, or who are eligible for special appointing authorities).  You must apply and submit required documents for both announcements if you wish to receive consideration under both Merit Promotion and Delegated Examining procedures.


  • Occasional Travel
  • Occasional local travel, 1-5 days a month, and other travel 1-5 days per year.


  • No


  • You must be a U.S. Citizen.
  • You will be subject to a background/suitability investigation/determination
  • You must submit ALL required documents and a completed questionnaire.
  • You will be required to have federal payments made by Direct Deposit.


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The major duties of this position include, but are not limited to the following:
• Assists the Secretary, Assistant Secretary, and other staff members in architectural design, art, and matters relating to: the preparation of projects submitted to the Commission for review; the conduct of public meetings each month regarding the public; and professional contacts relating to projects submitted to the Commission. 
• Prepares submission case files, draft reports, and keeps complete and timely records of the Commission’s actions.
• Responsible for the initial review and processing of incoming case materials for the Old Georgetown Act, Shipstead-Luce Act, and other assigned project cases.
• Examines incoming submission materials for completeness, legibility, and accuracy while carefully reviewing proposals for architectural design, historic preservation, civic design, landscape design within contexts that may be historic, monumental, or otherwise specialized.
• Visits and photographs sites of proposed projects.
• Contacts applicants, designers, and community representatives to assure full public notice, completeness of submission materials, and a clear understanding of any influencing factors.
• Assists other professional staff with presentations to the Commission of Fine Arts and the Old Georgetown Board regarding the various cases to be reviewed. 
• Develops historical and architectural data for presentation during scheduled meetings or for publications relating to Washington buildings, monuments, fountains, parks, streets, and other architectural and planning features.


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Historian (Architectural)
Education Requirements for All Grades:
1. Degree: history; or related field (such as historic preservation) that included at least 18 semester hours in history.
2. Combination of education and experience—courses equivalent to a major in history, or a major in a related field that included at least 18 semester hours in history, as shown in A above, plus appropriate experience or additional education.

Evaluation of Graduate Education: Graduate study in the social sciences or humanities may also be credited when such study included training in historical research methodology; or the thesis approached the subject from an historical viewpoint and used professional historical research methodology and techniques in its preparation.


Basic Requirements:
1. Degree: architecture; or related field (such as historic preservation) that included 60 semester hours of course work in architecture or related disciplines of which at least (1) 30 semester hours were in architectural design, and (2) 6 semester hours were in each of the following: structural technology, properties of materials and methods of construction, and environmental control systems.
2. Combination of education and experience -- college-level education, training, and/or technical experience that furnished (1) a thorough knowledge of the arts and sciences underlying professional architecture, and (2) a good understanding, both theoretical and practical, of the architectural principles, methods, and techniques and their applications to the design and construction or improvement of buildings. The adequacy of such background must be demonstrated by at least one of the following:
1. Related Curriculum: Degree in architectural engineering may be accepted as satisfying in full the basic requirements, provided the completed course work in architectural engineering provided knowledge, skills, and abilities substantially equivalent to those provided in the courses specified in paragraph A. The curriculum for a degree in either architecture or architectural engineering covers function, esthetics, site, structure, economics, mechanical-electrical, and other engineering problems related to the design and construction of buildings primarily (but not exclusively) intended to house human activities. The courses required for a degree in architecture generally place emphasis upon planning, esthetics, and materials and methods of construction, while the courses for an architectural engineering degree place equal or greater weight on the technical engineering aspects such as structural systems, mechanical systems, and the properties of materials. Because of this difference in emphasis, persons with degrees in architecture may have a preference for work assignments that offer greater opportunities for them to express their artistic and creative abilities. As a result, they may be more concerned with planning and design aspects of architecture, and persons with degrees in architectural engineering may be more engaged in aspects emphasizing technical engineering considerations.
2. Experience: An applicant lacking a degree in architecture must have had l year of experience in an architect's office or in architectural work for each year short of graduation from a program of study in architecture. In the absence of college courses, 5 years of such experience is required. This experience must have demonstrated that the applicant has acquired a thorough knowledge of the fundamental principles and theories of professional architecture.


In addition to the Educational requirements applicants must meet the following:

Specialized Experience Requirement for GS-11:  One year of specialized experience equivalent to the GS-09 grade level.  This experience is defined as carrying out historical documentation or research studies involving themes of art, architecture, landscape design, historic preservation, city planning, or another closely related topic.   This experience must have included preparing recommendations as to the historic significance of the sites involved.


Instead of specialized experience applicants may substitute directly related education that included 3 years of progressively higher level graduate education leading to a Ph.D. degree or Ph.D. or equivalent doctoral degree.


A combination of education and specialized experience.

Specialized Experience Requirement for the GS-12:  One year of specialized experience equivalent to the GS-11 grade level.  This experience is defined as carrying out long-range documentation or historical research studies which required the compilation of material from multiple specialized fields, including art, architecture, landscape design, historic preservation, and/or city planning. Qualifying experience at this level must have included: conducting a full study of the overall history of a multi-mission organization; planning and carrying out a series of definitive studies of historic sites, representing a broad range of historic events and time periods in the political, military, economic, and cultural developments for a geographic area; and/or reviewing construction or remodeling proposals for compatibility with the historical architecture of the area.

Additional information on the qualification requirements is outlined in the OPM Qualification Standards Handbook of General Schedule Positions and is available at OPM’s website:

Education: If this position requires specific educational course work to qualify, or you are qualifying based in whole or part on education, you are required to provide transcripts as proof of meeting the requirements. Failure to provide the documents will result in you receiving an INELIGIBLE rating.

Foreign Education: Education completed in colleges or universities outside the United States may be used to meet the specific educational requirements as stated above. You must provide acceptable documentation that the foreign education is comparable to that received in an accredited educational institution in the United States. For more information on how foreign education is evaluated, visit:

Selective Service: If you are a male applicant born after December 31, 1959, you must certify that you have registered with the Selective Service system, or are exempt from having to do so under the Selective Service Law.

Veterans Preference: If you are entitled to veteran's preference, indicate the type of preference you are claiming on your resume, and in the occupational Online Questionnaire  Your veteran's preference entitlement will be verified by the employing agency.


Your resume and responses to the self-assessment questions are an integral part of the process for determining your qualifications for this position.  Therefore, it is important that your resume supports your responses to the assessment questions.

There are several parts of the application process that affect the overall evaluation of your application:

1. Your resume which is part of your USAJOBS profile
2. Your responses to the online questionnaire
3. Your required and supporting documents, as outlined in the announcement

Category Rating will be used in the ranking and selection process for this position.  The categories are Best Qualified, Well Qualified, and Qualified.  Veterans’ preference rules for category rating will be applied.

Once the application process is complete, we will review your application to ensure you meet the job requirements.  To determine if you are qualified for this job, a review of your resume, supporting documentation, and responses to the (View Assessment Questions) will be made. The numeric rating you receive is based on your responses to the questionnaire.  The score is a measure of the degree to which your background matches the knowledge, skills and abilities required for this position. Your resume must clearly support your self-elected responses to the occupational questionnaire/assessment associated with this vacancy announcement. In the event your self-elected responses to the occupational questionnaire/assessment cannot be verified within the contents of your resume, your rating will be adjusted accordingly, and may subsequently place you in a lower quality category. Please follow all instructions carefully. Errors or omissions may affect your rating.
As part of the application process, you are required to respond to a series of questions designed to assess your possession of the following knowledge, skills, and abilities:

  • Architectural Knowledge- Knowledge of architectural principles and documentation, history, theories, practices and application as well as structural design and preservation planning in order to evaluate architectural design, interpret the building arts, and apply historic preservation standards, and evaluate overlapping agency jurisdictions.
  • Design Knowledge- Knowledge of the practice of and recent developments in urban design, city planning, and landscape design in general, with respect to master plans, parks, memorials, gardens, infrastructure, building envelopes, street furniture, materials, security elements, and lighting.
  • Presentation Skills- Ability to persuasively present information and deliver specific points of view on behalf of the Agency, Chairman, and Secretary.
  • Documentation Skills- Skill in the documentation of buildings or landscapes by drawing, use of photography, or historic research.




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To explore the major benefits offered to most Federal employees, visit the Office of Personnel Management's website at .


Important NoteBeginning January 1, 2010, agencies must seek prior approval from OPM before they can appoint a current or recent political appointee to a competitive or non-political excepted service position at any level under the provisions of title 5, United States Code.  If you are currently, or have been within the last 5 years, a political Schedule A, Schedule C, or Non-career SES employee in the executive branch, you MUST disclose that to the Human Resources Officer.


If you are claiming CTAP/ICTAP eligibility, you must submit proof by the closing date of the announcement that you meet the requirements of 5 CFR 330.605(a) for CTAP and 5 CFR 330.704 for ICTAP or you will not receive priority consideration. The proof includes a copy of the agency notice, your most recent Performance Rating, and your most recent SF-50 noting current position, grade level, and duty station. To be considered well-qualified and exercise selection priority for this vacancy, you must earn a minimum score of 85 or above (prior to the assignment of veteran's preference) on the rating criteria for this position.

Recruitment methods and selection procedures will be based solely on merit after fair and open competitive, and will be made without regard to political, religious, or labor organization affiliation or non-affiliation, marital status, race, color, sex, national origin, non-disqualifying disability, sexual orientation, or age. A preliminary background check must be completed before a new employee can begin work with the U.S. Department of the Interior.  The preliminary background check consists of a search of Office of Personnel Management and Department of Defense background investigation files and an FBI National Criminal History Fingerprint Check; it may take up to 3 weeks to complete.  If selected for this position, you will be extended a tentative offer of employment pending a satisfactory background check.  Current Federal employees or individuals with an existing completed background investigation may not be required to undergo another background check; these will be handled on a case-by-case basis in coordination with the Bureau security office. 


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To apply for this position, you must complete the occupational questionnaire and submit the documentation specified in the Required Documents section below.

The complete application package must be submitted by 11:59 PM (EST) on Monday, June 23, 2014 to receive consideration.

§  To begin, click Apply Online to create a USAJOBS account or log in to your existing account. Follow the prompts to select your USAJOBS resume and/or other supporting documents and complete the occupational questionnaire.

§  Click the Submit My Answers button to submit your application package.

§  It is your responsibility to ensure your responses and appropriate documentation is submitted prior to the closing date.

§  To verify your application is complete, log into your USAJOBS account,, select the Application Status link and then select the more information link for this position. The Details page will display the status of your application, the documentation received and processed, and any correspondence the agency has sent related to this application. Your uploaded documents may take several hours to clear the virus scan process.

§  To return to an incomplete application, log into your USAJOBS account and click Update Application in the vacancy announcement. You must re-select your resume and/or other documents from your USAJOBS account or your application will be incomplete.

All applicants are required to submit the following supporting document type(s):

Applicants may also submit the following supporting document type(s),which may not be required for all applicants:
   ·Cover Letter
   ·Other Veterans Document

Faxing Applications or Supporting Documents:

You are encouraged to apply online. Applying online will allow you to review and track the status of your application.

NOTE: If you applied online and your application is complete, do not fax the paper application (1203FX) as this will overwrite your prior online responses and may result in you being found ineligible.

If you completed the occupational questionnaire online and are unable to upload supporting document(s):

1.   To fax your documents, you must use the following cover page provide the required information. The Vacancy ID is   1128874

2.   Fax your documents to 1-478-757-3144.

If you cannot complete the Application Package online, you may fax all of your materials. The complete application package must be submitted by 11:59 PM (EST) on Monday, June 23, 2014 to receive consideration. Keep a copy of your fax confirmation in the event verification is needed.

To complete the occupational questionnaire and submit via fax:

1.   Click the following link to view and print the occupational questionnaire     View Occupational Questionnaire.

2.   Print the 1203FX form, follow the instructions and provide your responses to the occupational questionnaire items

3.   Fax all six pages of the completed 1203FX form along with any supporting documents to 1-478-757-3144. Your 1203FX will serve as a cover page for your fax transmission.


Your resume must contain information sufficient to make a valid determination that you fully meet the specialized experience requirements as stated in this vacancy announcement and OPM qualification standards for each grade level(s) for which you are applying.  It is strongly recommended that you use the USAJobs Resume Builder as it was designed to ensure that your resume includes the standard information needed.  The Resume Builder is available at

Your application package must include:
• Resume showing relevant experience as written in your own words.
• Completed online Assessment Questionnaire or faxed OPM Form 1203FX.
• College transcript is required for verification of qualifying education. Unofficial transcripts are acceptable; however, an official transcript may be requested at a later time.
• Certificates, license, etc. (if applicable)
• Veterans Preference Documentation (if applicable)
      o If claiming 5 point preference:
         • DD-214 (member 4 copy or a copy that shows the nature of service)
         • If you are currently serving on active duty, an official Statement of Service from your command.

Current Active Duty members must submit a certification of expected discharge or release from active duty under honorable conditions dated within the last 120 day.

       o Other Official Documentation (e.g. copy of military orders, campaign documents such as: expeditionary award citation, etc.) that proves your military service was performed under HONORABLE conditions and that your service meets the OPM criteria for veterans preference to be awarded.
      o If claiming 10-point preference or greater:
         • DD-214 (member 4 copy or a copy that shows the nature of service) and;

An official statement dated 1991 or later, from the Department of Veterans Affairs, or from a branch of the Armed Forces, certifying that the veteran (i.e., the applicant) has a service-connected disability of 10% or more.


NOTE: If you submit an incomplete application, you will be given credit only for the information you provide. You are responsible for submitting all required documentation in support of your application in order to receive full credit for your experience, education, training, and/or veterans’ preference.

For additional veterans’ employment information please visit, or call 1-800-827-1000.


HR Assistant
Phone: (703)787-1446
Agency Information:
Commission of Fine Arts
381 Elden St
Washington, DC


If you are rated as one of the best qualified candidates, you will be referred to the hiring manager for further consideration and possible interview. After a selection is made all applicants for this position will be notified of their status either by letter or e-mail.

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