How to Choose a Career 

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How to Choose a Career

Many students don't have much time to spend in career planning during their degree course. You may be too busy working to earn money to pay your way through university, or perhaps you are a mature student with a young family that you need to support. You may be too busy to regularly visit the Careers Service.

Choosing a career involves 4 main stages:

  • Self Awareness
  • Opportunity Awareness
  • Decision Making
  • Taking Action

    Sometimes these stages will overlap and sometimes you have to return to a previous stage

    Self Awareness

    The first stage of Career Choice is Self Awareness. This involves looking at your SKILLS, VALUES, INTERESTS and PERSONALITY and analyzing where your strengths and weaknesses lie.

    This is important both in choosing the right career and also for success in applications and interviews where you will find many questions which test whether you have been through this process.

    Opportunity Awareness

    Once you have done some preliminary self analysis, the next stage is to gather information on the opportunities open to you.

    Many jobs are open to graduates of any degree subject

    Early in your course you should look at the Work Experience open to you. As well as allowing you to earn money, they may allow you to gain relevant skills and perhaps an insight into the types of job you are interested in, putting you at the head of the queue when you eventually apply for jobs.

    You may like to enter Postgraduate Study instead of directly entering a job, or it may be required for a particular career such as law or teaching.

    Here it may be important to apply early in your final year and to look at whether funding will be available to pay for the course or if you will need a scholarship

    Making Decisions

    Prospects Planner helps you choose a graduate career. Of course, the other important part in making decisions is discussing it with other people. Friends, family and tutors can all play an important part here.

    How to Choose a Career - Taking Action

    This is the final process of career planning. It involves:

  • Finding out about the employers that offer the types of jobs you are interested in.
  • Search vacancy database
  • Preparing applications and attending interviews
  • Perhaps taking aptitude tests and attending selection centers

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    How to Choose a Career