Administrative action is a comprehensive term and defies exact definition. In modern times the administrative process is a by-product of intensive form of government and cuts across the traditional classification of governmental powers and combines into one all the powers, which were traditionally exercised by three different organs of the State.
Therefore, there is general agreement among the writers on administrative law that any attempt of classifying administrative functions or any conceptual basis is not only impossible but also futile.
Even then a student of administrative law is compelled to delve into field of classification because the present-day law especially relating to judicial review freely employs conceptual classification of administrative action.
Thus, speaking generally, an administrative action can be classified into four categories:
i) Rule-making action or quasi-legislative action.
ii) Rule-decision action or quasi-judicial action.
iii) Rule-application action or administrative action.
iv) Ministerial action