STEP 2: Occupational Information

Having now completed a thorough self-evaluation, you are ready to research the career options that most closely match your interests, skills, values, and personality preferences. Start by making a list of the occupations about which you would like to learn more. Now see if you can answer the following questions for each job on your list.

Use the Occupational Information Network to search for occupations based upon skills, abilities, or areas of knowledge that you would like to use in a job. You may also search for occupations by job families. In reviewing occupations, not only will you find out what types of skills, abilities, and areas of knowledge are related to an occupation, but you will also discover tasks, work activities, job setting information, related interests, and work values related to each occupation. There are also a number of free assessments that can be found on the Internet. Below is a list of some of the more commonly used ones.

Produced by the U.S. Department of Labor, the Occupational Outlook Handbook provides descriptions of thousands of occupations. These descriptions include the nature of the work, salary information, job outlook, education and training information, job outlook, and work conditions.

Princeton Review
In addition to information on salary, education and training, etc., this site allows you to read "a day in the life" description of each occupation. Other features include a "quality of life" report and information on related majors.

LA Health Careers
This is an excellent site for those seeking information about health-related occupations. Job descriptions, salary information, and Louisiana colleges/universities offering related degree programs are included here.

Tip: As you review different occupations, make notes about the careers that you've explored. In particular, jot down what you do and/or don't like about these occupations. A quick and easy way to record this information is to print copies of the descriptions from the Occupational Outlook Handbook and the Occupational Information Network. Use a highlighter to mark the features of an occupation that appeal to you. Then with a different colored highlighter, mark any features that are unappealing. Collecting this information as you go along will make your job easier when you get to Step 3, Evaluate Options.