Career Path Test Resources

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"Test" sounds competitive and resonates with "pass/fail". But many tests, including career path tests, are neither designed as nor intended to be competitive. For example, the very popular, but much-debated Luscher Color personality test (available in quiz short-form online), is essentially designed to identify, not evaluate your personality. However, in concrete applications, even non-competitive tests can be put to competitive use, e.g., the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, which classifies personalities along various spectra and in various categories, e.g., introversion-extroversion.

Even if a test is designed to only describe and not evaluate your personality, if your "type" is not among those best suited for a job and the HR department knows that, someone else may be given preference. In its most robust full 72-color form, even the Luscher Color test has been used by companies to diagnostically make predictions and decisions about employees, despite the "parlor game" image the shorter, 8-color popular version has had.

Some career path tests are job-oriented, e.g., the Myers-Briggs, whereas others have broader applicability, e.g., an IQ test, a pattern-recognition test or the Miller Analogies test (the latter used primarily for graduate school admission). In some instance, e.g., the Luscher Color test, the claimed range of application is broad-spanning purely personal to personnel assessment.

A career path test is a sophisticated tool that helps you find out which career or profession is most suitable for you. More rigorously designed, tested and administered than most career path quizzes, e.g., online, such tests are often used not only for personal assessment, but also for professional placement.

Through the analysis of your inputs in various categories, the test can come up with a list of suggested careers for you or measure/classify variables, such as aptitude, related to matching you and a career. In short, it is a useful tool not only for narrowing down or expanding career options, but also for creating greater self-awareness. While such tests are not foolproof, they can give you a better idea of how you can pursue a career based on your interests, existing skills, innate aptitudes, personality and current educational level as well as on other factors.

There are several types of career path tests. Among them is the Myers-Briggs test or components of it to assess your personality, such as how outgoing, intuitive, perceptive, feeling or thinking you are. Another similar test is the Keirsey Temperament test to assess what kind of personality you have. Other tests would include the IQ test, career skills test and career values tests.

It is important to note that many, if not most of these tests are not "pass-fail" tests, and if competitive are so only when applied in that manner by the test administrator or proxy, e.g., an HR department. For example, although the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator is designed to identify, rather than evaluate, your degree of introversion vs. extroversion, for any given job slot that is best filled with an extrovert, an introvert's profile may become a competitive handicap. To a lesser extent the same is true of aptitude tests, e.g., IQ, since although one never "fails" an IQ test, there is a consensus about what counts as a "high" or "low" IQ and a score's implications for ability to performa a job.

In any event, the results from all these tests will help to form a more complete picture of yourself, to the extent that there might be some aspects of your personality that you are unaware of. Nonetheless, with such comprehensive data and interpretations, the test will be able to help narrow down or expand your career options, while enriching your self-understanding in terms of recognizing and realizing your potential. With such test results and interpretations, you will be in a better position to make an informed decision on which career path to take.
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