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Interest Assessment help

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Learn more about the Interest Assessment.

What does this tool do?

The Interest Assessment matches your interests to careers. You answer 30 short questions by saying how much interest you have in different activities. Those answers create your Interest Profile. Then you see a list of careers that are good matches for your unique Interest Profile.

From there, you can explore the careers on your list of matches. You can learn about the outlook (new job opportunities expected) for jobs in that field, average pay, and the typical education needed.

How do I get started?

Get started by answering the questions. There are three pages of 10 questions each. Each question lists an activity that some people might do in their jobs.

For each question, click the box under the word or phrase that best describes how much you think you would like the activity listed. Your choices are Strongly Like, Like, Unsure, Dislike, or Strongly Dislike. Please note that if you select all "Strongly Dislike" or "Strongly Like" the system will not be able to match you to occupations.

One you’ve answered the questions on each page, click “Next” to see the next page of questions.  When you click “Next” after the third page, you’ll see your career matches.

Can I change my answers while I’m taking the Interest Assessment?

Yes, you can change any answer at any time by clicking a different box. To go back or forward to a new page, use the “Back” and “Next” buttons at the bottom of each page.

Are there right or wrong answers?

No, there are no right or wrong answers in an interest assessment—there are only answers that best describe you. Try to answer honestly whether you would like that kind of work rather than whether you would be good at it, if you have enough education, or whether you would make enough money at it. For activities you have no experience with, try to imagine what the work activity would be like, and answer to the best of your ability.

How does the Interest Assessment come up with my career matches?

The Interest Assessment uses your answers to the 30 questions to make a profile of your interests. Your profile takes into account the activities you like as well as those you dislike. Then your profile is compared to the profiles of different careers, and the most similar matches are listed in your results.  O*NET, which powers the Interest Assessment, provides more details.

What is the Interest Assessment based on?

The Interest Assessment is based on O*NET's Interest Profiler, which is based on Dr. John Holland’s theory that people’s interests and work environments can be loosely classified into six different groups, Realistic, Investigative, Artistic, Social, Enterprising, and Conventional. Download the RIASEC interest descriptions to learn more. By determining your interests, the assessment can identify the types of work environments most likely to match.

For most people, two or three interest groups are stronger than the others. For example, if your profile is Social, Artistic and Enterprising, you probably most closely resemble the Social work environment, next most closely the Artistic type, and not quite as much the Enterprising type. The other types, not in your profile, are the types you resemble least.

Like people, most careers reflect a combination of two or three of the Holland interest areas. People are usually most satisfied if their work environment and their interests share some aspects in common.

This system has been tested and used with a wide variety of people, and has been found to be consistently reliable, meaningful, and easy to use.

My list of career matches looks wrong for me—can I take the assessment again?

If you think that the careers on your list of matches are not a good fit for you, you may want to take the assessment again or change some of your answers. From your page of career matches, click on “Change answers” in the upper left-hand area. You’ll go back to your previous page of questions but you will see that your first answers are still selected.  You can now change all or some of your answers. When you finish, you will have a new Interest Profile and a new set of career matches.

What can I learn from my list of career matches?

You can use your list of occupation matches to explore career ideas that may be right for you. At a glance you can see some important information about each of these careers:

Match: You can see if this career is:

  • Best (a very close fit for your interests)
  • Great (a good fit for most of your interests)
  • Good (fits some of your likes or dislikes but not as closely as Best and Great)

Use the choices to the left of the table, called filters, to show only Best or Great matches.

Career: Click on the name of any career to find more detailed information about that career.

Outlook: Here you can see whether the career listed is expected to be in demand. Each career is either:

  • Bright (new job opportunities are very likely in the future)
  • Average (a small number—less than an 8 percent increase—of new job opportunities are likely in the future)
  • Below average (new job opportunities are less likely in the future)

Hourly wages: See the median hourly wage for each career. Median wage means one half of all workers in this occupation earns less than this wage and one-half earns more

Education: See the level of education usually needed to enter this career.

How can I see career matches that fit my level of education?

You can choose to see only career matches that fit your education and experience level. To do this, click on one of the links under “Education and experience needed” to the left of your table of career matches, under Show Only. You can view careers that require a variety of preparation, from very little to extensive. Preparation includes a combination of school, work experience, and on-the-job-training. Learn more about these levels of preparation from O*NET’s job zone descriptions.

Where does this information come from?

Data on this tool come from various sources:

Who can I contact for help?

If you have questions about career planning, please contact your local American Job Center. If you have questions about how the Interest Profiler works, please contact the CareerOneStop Service Center at info@careeronestop.org.