You and your career

The first step in making career choices is to work out what you are good at and what jobs you might enjoy.

Perhaps you already have some ideas? Or you have tried a job or work experience and decided you do not like that area of work? Or maybe you are still very unsure?

Whatever your situation, it is worth spending some time thinking about your career interests, your strengths, and the skills you have. This is sometimes called "self-assessment". It is not about making any decisions yet. That comes later. At this stage you are just exploring.


Work with someone else if you find it difficult to think about your skills and strengths on your own.

Self-assessment takes time, but it could save you a lot of time and disappointment in the future. It can help you to:

  1. Choose the right type of jobs to apply for
  2. Write a good CV that tells an employer how your skills and achievements match the job they want to fill
  3. Know what to say in application forms
  4. Do well in interviews

You can do your self-assessment on your own – or you can do it with a teacher, a relative, a friend, or someone else who knows you well.

Career choices… how to

Spend some time thinking about the points on the following pages, or talk them through with someone else.

We will give you some web links to help you clarify your ideas. Remember it is easy to lose track of time on the internet. So if you use the web links, decide how much time you want to spend. We suggest that you do no more than an hour at a time. Then stop and make some notes of what you have learned.

Write down your thoughts and ideas so that you can look at them again later. This will help you to make a career action plan, write your CV, and start applying for jobs.

Once you have done your career self-assessment, you can start on your career action plan.

Last updated 23 February, 2017