Self-assessment

Knowing your personal characteristics, attributes, preferences, talents and values provides both foundation and direction for your choice of a major and a career path.

When friends and family ask you questions like:

“What is your major?”

“What are your plans after graduation?”

Do you answer:

“I’m not sure yet….”

“How do I choose….”?

Feeling uncertain about your career can be uncomfortable and worrisome, but these questions are the starting point of any career! The best way to answer them is by being proactive. 

Know yourself

  • Take the time to understand yourself, your skills and your interests. Exploring a range of possible career ideas – with this understanding – is an invaluable step at the start of your career.

  • Knowing your personal characteristics, attributes, preferences, talents and values provides both foundation and direction for your choice of a major and a career path. 

How an advisor can help

Advisors at the Centre for Student Involvement and Careers recommend students explore a career assessment inventory, print out the results and then schedule an advising session (in person, by phone or online) to debrief, interpret and actualize the results. Advisors can assist your career reflections in advising sessions by:

  • Processing of the results and promoting your continued reflection 
  • Encourage deeper reflection on personal attributes and talents 
  • Discussing strategic methods to apply your new understanding to career choice and development
  • Utilizing the “StrengthsFinder” reflection worksheets and analyzing their results, to personalize career planning based on your strengths and talents

Career assessment tools

There are many tools that can help you discover your strengths, with some available online at no cost and others administered by professional career counsellors. 

  • Generally an inventory of questions about your preferences, experiences and abilities. 
  • Expect approx. 40 minutes to complete
  • Value emerges in the post-assessment reflection

General assessment inventories (available at no cost) include: 

  • Career Cruising, the assessment tab available through UBC Career Services.

More in-depth assessment inventories (available at a reasonable cost) include:

  • SkillScan ($14.95 online purchase) produces a concrete and practical profile of your attributes and preferences then matched with a profile of possible relevant career choices.
  • StrengthsFinder ($10 online purchase or $30 purchase of book with access code included). The “StrengthsFinder” underlying philosophy is that learners and professionals are more likely to realize their potential when they understand, articulate and focus on their innate strengths.
  • Sokanu ($34.99) a Vancouver-based company offering a career assessment platform.

Self assessment resources for graduate students

Develop a career plan and make the most of your graduate degree.

Skills to do a job

Book an advising appointment