7 Reasons to Take Assessment Tests

In high school, the pressure to be decided about life looms like a cloud.

  1. “What should I do for a living?”
  2. “What should my major be?”
  3. “What kind of job should I get?”
  4. “Should I have a job, a career, or both?”
  5. “What is the difference between those?”
  6. “What if I don’t want to go to college?”
  7. “What are all of my options?”

Students are tasked with a great deal of testing, usually to determine their readiness and the school’s performance. There is one test that doesn’t get taken. It’s an assessment test.

Assessment testing is widely varied in type and purpose. The short story is that these tests help students decide what they could do for a living. Based on what they like, what they know, or what traits successful employees in a certain industry display, these tests can take the stress out of choosing majors, jobs, and careers. In other words, they test personality and skills.

The ASVAB

One well-known assessment test is the AFQT/ASVAB used for military candidates. It is a fairly thorough examination of a person’s knowledge in a number of areas. It tests for mechanical and mathematical knowledge, among other things. Each section of the test equates to a specific industry. The idea is to be assigned to the area with the best score. It almost ensures good job performance. Even better, this can be used to measure IQ. In an ideal situation, the selected military job will translate to successful civilian employment.

The different areas of the ASVAB test mechanical skill, math, science, and several other subjects. Each of those represents a group of numerous, fairly secure jobs that military members get paid to learn. This can be a boon for those with little or no work history. Career advancement can be easier as well.

Whether contracted for two years or 30, a military veteran has considerable professional knowledge compared to many civilians. The longer they served, the more they know. According to Rhett Jeppson, Associate Administrator for the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Office of Veterans Business Development, 45% of all veterans are more inclined toward business ownership.

The Human Metrics Jung Typology Test

For those uninterested in the military, there is the Jung Typology Test http://bit.ly/J4YZCY. It pinpoints the personality type of the test taker. With that, decisions can be made about majors and jobs and careers based on the best fit for the type of person. There are four types, two of them introverted, two of them extroverted. Basically, the other factors are whether or not the person is a thinker, a judger, a sensor, a perceiver, or a feeler. Each possible combination of these aspects creates a different personality and outcome assigned to appropriate industries. Various personality tests are available at http://www.humanmetrics.com.

No Faking Necessary

Anyone can don a façade and say he plans to go to USC or become a doctor or engineer. Why USC, one of the more expensive universities, which is private, by the way? Most people don’t have the longevity or persistence to become doctors. What kind of doctor? What type of engineer? The vague answers to those questions—along the lines of “I don’t know yet”– reveal the truth, which is that it was simply talk.

Assessment tests can identify the true interests of students. People settle for good pay on jobs they hate everyday. What’s more, they are stuck in them if they have families. Despite that, why refuse to explore other possibilities? That doesn’t require quitting or taking on the lifestyle of a starving artist.

The best thing about assessments is that they can help the test taker narrow down the many choices they have. They are necessary. How else is a student supposed to be motivated enough to do what it takes to succeed?

Some people just want to get a job. A career is a better choice because at some point, advancement or ambition is expected or required to stay valuable to an organization. Assessment tests help by addressing both situations at a foundational level.

The Official Site of the ASVAB Testing Program. http://official-asvab.com/eligibility_res.htm

The Human Metrics Jung Typology Test, http://www.humanmetrics.com/cgi-win/jtypes2.asp

Human Metrics, http://www.humanmetrics.com

Rhett Jeppson, Associate Administrator, U.S. Small Business Administration’s Office of Veterans’ Business Development.

Albert R. Renteria, Founder and CEO at Albert R. Renteria Corporation and Southwest Veterans’ Business Resource Center.

20 Things We Forget About College

As parents, we forget some things along the way to launch our little adults into the world. Maybe we didn’t know these things in the first place. There’s no doubt that we haven’t always shared the workforce changes that are clear to the experienced.

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  1. The most important thing is to research and choose a career. That will tell them if college is even necessary to achieve it. It usually isn’t for the first few years or more on a job.
  2. Accept that they may want jobs of which you don’t approve. In other words, they may not require college.
  3. They can have a gap year. They’re usually more interested in becoming free adults than in more school. This also helps if they’re undecided about a career.
  4. They shouldn’t be undeclared. Before you say it worked for you or someone you know, check the stats on that path. The time and money spent are non-refundable. Do more of them complete a program or drop out of college? If they graduate, how many of them don’t change careers by age 40? Did they finish under outside pressure or did they reach a professional conclusion? How much do they make in comparison to those who followed through from the start?
  5. Some students drop out despite talking a good game. Find out why. Living someone else’s dream, losing sight of a goal they don’t fully support, and hating school are a few reasons.
  6. College doesn’t take all day. This means that full-time students’ courses generally take less time out of the day than high school did. That leaves time for everything else—part-time work, socializing, studying, and sleep. High school students wish the school day ended at noon. In college, the schedule can be arranged to facilitate that.
  7. They should work part-time and only in jobs pertaining to their majors. The advantage is that they can do it part-time, which is anything less than 40 hours a week. Sure, we know that, but where does it show? Anyway, no more of those Starbucks jobs to pay their share of the rent. Unless their career focus is on finance or retail…This era of their lives may be the only instance where they can risk this.
  8. It isn’t a magic bullet anymore if it ever was. Have we forgotten that if most people send their kids to college, more of them will end up closer to the bottom of the pyramid than the top?
  9. They may not make big bucks. The idea is to avoid poverty, not to keep up with the Joneses. We lose sight of that.
  10. We’re being vicarious and using them to achieve what we didn’t. There’s a lack of objectivity there. At some point, their dreams for themselves outweigh our dreams for them. Let go. The kids can handle it. We raised them, didn’t we? Meaning well but should step aside.
  11. Get an associate’s degree (or a certificate) along the way. Somewhere this can pay. Get all the gems possible while running from the monster. Isn’t that in a video game?
  12. Find an employer who will pay for that associate’s degree (or certificate). If they do make enough to be independent, the goal has been met! More college is optional then. Breaks are allowed.
  13. We don’t suggest that they act like adults even though that’s what they are. They can choose which days they attend school. Not having to go daily is a plus.
  14. Majors matter. They are not arbitrary. Some pay more. Others will compensate them well regardless of a lack of experience.
  15. We stress the four-year degree yet frown on the certificate and associate’s degree. Some students only have enough motivation to achieve one of these. If so, let it ride. It’s their truth, not ours.
  16. We hiss and throw the stink eye at vocational education because of for-profit schools. There are other places to get it. High schools and county government agencies are two examples.
  17. Employers pay for college. Encourage them to get jobs in industries they like. Anything can happen if a job (or culture) is the right fit.
  18. Have them find mentors for the careers they think they want. Do this whether they work, volunteer, or intern. These people can tell them if and when a degree will be necessary. It also initiates professional networking, which has proven success.
  19. It’s not all about making money. Telling them to aim for the highest of incomes could promote greed and materialism. Money doesn’t solve every issue. It can also create new ones.
  20. They can afford to make half of what you think they should. Roommates make this reasonable. Neither scenario has to be permanent.

Did I miss anything? Do you disagree? Was I clear? Tell me in the comments.