How do I choose a career?

Deciding on your longer term career choice is a challenging task for many students. You may or may not already have an idea of what you want to do. If you do, it is important that you research your chosen career. If you are not sure what you would like to do, then the following steps may help you:

• Consider taking a careers test to help suggest careers that might suit you:
• Speak to your teachers about what subjects they feel you are better at;
• Have a chat with your school careers advisor;
• Talk to friends and family about the job they do;
• Attend your school careers fair and other careers events that may be organised at school (in this climate you can complete tasks sent by your careers advisor);
• Make a list of your key skills, speak to friends and family and ask them what they think you’re good at and what your key strengths are;
• Look at job profiles online to read up about different jobs. For example, if you enjoy computing or sport, do a search on what careers these subjects could lead into;
• Think about attending an external careers fair to speak to employers and get some more career advice and support about your chosen career (in this climate this can be done online);
• Think about getting some work experience in your chosen field. If you are thinking about being a sports coach, have a look at what volunteering opportunities might be available in your local area (in this climate you can join virtual experiences and workshops);
• Expand your hobbies, if you enjoy watching movies, could you write an online film review for other students to see? If you are considering becoming a doctor or a dentist, then could you speak to your own consultant and see if you can interview them about what they do? Perhaps in the interview ask them if you can have an opportunity to complete some work shadowing with them;
• Speak to external careers services, national careers service advisor or the apprenticeship advice line;
• Create a careers folder or spreadsheet to help you keep a record all your career links. For example: websites; work experience contacts; details of careers fairs and key dates for your diary;
• Research ‘day in the life’ videos, for example what does a veterinary nurse, paramedic or a ccivil engineer do in their job day to day?

Useful links

Job Profiles
Jobs by subject
What Career Live
National Careers Service
Bitesize Job Profiles