When I ask high school graduates what they want to be in life, ninety percent reply that they don't know.  That's a rather sad statement about our school system's ability to prepare students for life.   After all, the system's had them for 12 years.

Presently, students use intuition and random sampling to plan their careers.  Obviously, these methods are risky, time consuming, and expensive.   But, if you follow the five steps listed below, you can select an occupation with 80% accuracy.

Here are five things you can do to plan your career.  You must understand that the purpose of the 5 Steps is to discover your




These are important factors in career planning.

      1. Report Card Grades
      2. Standardized Tests
      3. Ancillary Tests
      4. Counselor/ Votech
      5. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics
The following list is an explanation of what to do with the above list.  You'll need a pen and paper.  Divide the paper into two columns to write simple notes as you review your files.  The happy faces are clickable.
  1. Report Card Grades: Go to your elementary and high school offices and ask for your cumulative record folder.  Then, review all of your Report Card grades.  Jot down those subjects that have the highest grades in one column and those that have the lowest grades in the other column.  These subjects indicate interest and aptitude.  Or, lack of interest and aptitude.  If you scored high in English or language, for example, you might plan a career around writing, teaching, communications, etc.  If you scored low in math, then stay away from the sciences, accounting, etc.
  2. Standardized Tests: Also, while you're examining your cumulative record folder, review all standardized achievement tests you have taken, such as, Iowa Basics, Stanford Binet, SAT, PSAT.  Once again, jot down those subjects in which you scored the highest and lowest.  These also indicate aptitude and interest.
  3. Ancillary Tests: Also, while you have the cumulative record folder, review any Aptitude tests, Interest Inventories, Personality Profiles, Intelligence Tests you may have taken.  And, jot down the highest and lowest scores.
  4. Counselor/ Votech:  In your quest for a profitable, satisfying and successful career, you can never take enough tests to guarantee results.  Even after you have a job, you can still take tests to reassure yourself that you're in the right occupation or, perhaps, reevaluate your position.  Therefore, go to your high school/ college/Votech counselor and ask to take some career planning tests, such as, temperament indicators, aptitude tests, interest inventories, personality profiles, job placement tests, ability tests, etc.  These tests are very helpful and predictive, especially, the United States Armed Forces Aptitude Battery test  and the United States Government Aptitude Battery test.  In most schools these tests are free and only take several hours to complete.  The Armed Forces and the Government tests are extremely valid and may require some arm twisting, pleading and bribery to take.  But, they're worth it.
  5. United States Department of Labor, Bureau of Job Statistics:  At this point, you should have a good idea of your interests and your aptitude (If you don't, repeat steps 1 - 4).   Your next step, therefore, is to find out:
The answers to the above questions can be found on the Internet pages I have posted below.  Click on a happy face.  Because the Department of Labor's web site is loaded with helpful information, I've posted the following pages:
Department of Labor Home Page
Phone: 202 606 6378  (Tom Beers is very helpful)

Department of Labor Job Statistics Pages
Occupation Outlook
(You should spend several hours browsing this page and thinking about your interests)

Working Conditions

Occupation Clusters

Of course, the 5 Steps prescribe the ideal way to plan a career.  But, sometimes reality plays a part in the equation.  For example, suppose, as you look over the jobs and their attributes, you discover that one pays more than another, requires more training than you can afford, is located in a higher cost of living area, is very dangerous, or is flooded with applicants, you may have to adjust your interest and aptitude goals accordionly.

Another facet of career planning that should be explored is matching your temperament with the correct job is.  The following are a few pages to get you started.

The Quick Kiersey Temperament Sorter
See a career counselor for best results.

Myers Briggs Type Indicator
See a career counselor for best results.

Temperament And Your Career
See a career counselor for best results.
(Unfortunately, I've lost the above link. Temperament is an important part of planning a career.)

This education video should be helpful

The Revolution In Education on YouTube

Well, that's it.  Good luck, best wishes and may God bless and speed your endeavors.