Career Exploration

The first step to landing the career of your dreams is knowing yourself. The tools below offer opportunities to explore yourself, to reflect on the things you value in a career and to identify majors and career paths that suit you.

Focus2 logo

Focus2 is an online tool to help you define your interests and align them with Western's majors and the careers that they may lead you to. Click below to learn more about how to activate your account and get started! 

Focus2

First-time users

Create a new Focus2 account

Tips:

  • When prompted, use access code "mountaineers"
  • You must register using your 'western.edu' email address

Returning users

Login to Focus2


Get the most out of Focus2

1. Complete the personal inventories and self-assessments

  • Two personal inventories will help you understand your academic strengths and career planning readiness.
  • Five self-assessments will help you to understand your work interests, personality, values, skills and leisure preferences.
  • Tip: You may re-do these inventories and assessments as many times as you like.

2. Explore majors and careers

  • Use the "combine assessments" option to explore how the multiple dimensions of you might match with particular majors and/or career paths.
  • You also may explore careers on your own, compare occupations side-by-side, and see how particular majors at Western may lead to diverse career paths.
  • These tools will help you learn about work environments, required education, potential salaries and job titles, and the present and future demand of career fields.

3. Save your profile so you can re-visit and update later

  • You may save majors/careers that interest you so you can come back later.
  • Remember that you can update your self-assessments throughout your college career to see how your academic and career interests change over time.

4. Take action!

  • Contact Career Services before or after you've explore Focus2 on your own to discuss how this information can help you to clarify your career plans after Western and how you can be preparing now for your future.
  • You may self-schedule an appointment with Career Services at your convenience through Handshake


Disclaimer

Choosing your major and career path are complex decisions that may include data like that provided by Focus2 in addition to other factors like input from family and your academic advisor, feedback from other career or personal assessments, work with Career Services and a multitude of personal considerations. Focus2 is a reputable tool used by hundreds of universities around the country but your results should not be interpreted as prescribing or mandating any particular major or career path. Western provides Focus2 as a tool to support students in making informed, thoughtful choices about these important educational and life decisions.

 

Comprehensive Personal and Career Exploration Resources

  • College In Colorado is a comprehensive education and career planning site from the Colorado Department of Higher Education that includes self-assessments for interests, skills and values, as well as a resume builder, online portfolio builder and more.
     
  • My Next Move is a service of the U.S. Department of Labor that will help you explore career options through keyword search, industry or personal interests. Career data is provided through the federal O*NET database with occupational roles, salary outlooks and employment trends.
     
  • NCDA Career Planning Resources is full of free resources that have been vetted and compiled by the National Career Development Association. Resources include self-assessments, occupational information, data on employment trends, tutorial videos, job search resources and more.

Self-Assessments*

These assessments are built to be accessible, free versions of tests that traditionally are offered only by trained professionals. These versions should not be assumed to provide scientifically valid results, but may provide valuable feedback that will help you interrogate your own interests, values, skills and styles.

  • The Keirsey Temperament Sorter is based on Keirsey Temperament Theory, which will help you understand how you communicate and take action. 
     
  • The Big Five identifies your dominant personality trait, which may help you to understand your learning styles and work preferences.
     
  • The DISC Personality Test helps you find out how the Dominance, Influence, Steadiness and Compliance (DISC) factors predict your behavior toward others and the everyday things you do.
     
  • 16personalities is based on the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) questionnaire. 16personalities is a quick assessment that applies archetypes to the classic MBTI types.
     
  • The Career Cluster Interest Survey asks you to rate the activities you enjoy doing, subjects you enjoy studying and personal qualities to identify "career clusters" that may be a good fit for you.

*Western does not contract with or endorse these self-assessments. Links are provided only for exploratory purposes, to encourage self-reflection and dialogue. Any free internet assessment should be approached with a critical eye. Career Services is available to debrief your results but is not certified or licensed to interpret any specific results.

Career Information & Data

  • Career One Stop is a U.S. Department of Labor site with career exploration and management tools, job search and training information and many more resources.
     
  • O*NET offers career information including typical duties, work styles, salary/workforce outlook and links to job search resources.
     
  • The Occupational Outlook Handbook is a comprehensive database from the Bureau of Labor Statistics that includes career information on duties, training and education requirements, pay and employment outlooks for hundreds of professions.