The Career Placement Test was Very Useful

by Rebecca

A couple of years ago, I took a career placement class at the community college. They had us take several tests to see what types of jobs we had an interest in.

I think that one particular piece of advice I would give someone who is taking a career placement test, is that you need to be honest on the test. If money is important to you, don't write on the test that it's not important to you.

One of the tests that interests me, that I did not take was the aptitude test. I think that one of the most important things in job hunting is to find a type of job or goal, that your capable of doing well. I mean you can desire to be a math teacher all you want, but if your terrible at math, than its really not a realistic goal.

However, to be honest, I'm not sure how accurate my test was. There is only really so many things that a test can do. For example, I am very good at working with children, but the test I took never really showed that. I think while taking the test is a very good thing, I don't necessarily think that it should be taking as gospel either. In the end, you know what types of things you like to do and what types of things you do not like to do.

This being said, I do think taking the tests were worth it because it at the very least gave me options to actually think about.

Lisa's Response

You make a few really good points about career tests, Rebecca, and I'd like to highlight them a bit.

1. Be honest when you answer the questions on a career test.

If you are doing a personality test, your first gut response is typically the best answer. In order to get the most accurate results, don't try to over-think a personality test.

2. Use your common sense to help understand the results.

You may get some results that don't seem to make a lot of sense to you. There may be career options that you would never consider, or some careers that interest you may not show up in the results.

If the results are not what you had expected, ask yourself (or, better yet, ask the counselor who administered the test) to help you understand the results.

I once did a career personality test that told me I should (among other options) become a circus performer.

On the surface, that seems like a very odd result, but if I think it through, it makes sense. I have studied music all my life, I love the arts and creative pursuits in general, I enjoy performing or being in front of a group, I like interacting with people. So, although I'm not going to run away and join a circus because it's not a good fit for me for other reasons, the job of circus performer is probably a good fit for someone with my personality.

3. There are only so many things a career test can do.

That point is very important to keep in mind when you are reviewing the results of a career test.

Career tests normally measure only one factor that contributes to your best career choices. They may measure aptitudes, interests, personality, work values, etc.

So an aptitude test will not measure whether you would enjoy a particular career, and a personality test would not measure whether you would be good at a particular career.

It's important to remember which type of test you have taken while you are thinking about the results of any career placement test you may take.

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