Career Decision Making

The first step to solving a career problem is to bridge the gap between where you are and where you want to be. Exploring your values, interests, and skills will help you find educational and career options that match up with your goals. Whether you are choosing a major, searching for a job, or applying to grad schools, our theory-based services can help you develop and implement a plan for the future.

Know About Yourself

Knowing what is important to you (your values), what you enjoy (your interests), and what you do well (your skills) will make it easier for you to make a career decision. Think of values, interests, and skills as the three legs of a stool. You will sit more comfortably with your decision if each leg is equally strong. The pyramid below is a simple way to remember what is important in making career decisions.


Engage in some or all of the activities below to learn more about your values, interests, and skills:

  • Use a Computer Assisted Career Guidance System (SIGI3, or FOCUS2) and complete an interest, skills, or values assessment by creating a free account.
  • Complete the Self-Directed Search (SDS) with the help of a Career Advisor at the Career Center. The SDS is an instrument designed to help you organize information about your interests and abilities. After you complete the inventory, you will be able to see how this information about yourself connects to occupations and fields of study.
  • Complete the "Increase Your Self-Knowledge" activities as outlined in our Quick Guides

Know About Your Options

Now that you have explored information about yourself, it’s time to connect that knowledge to what you have learned about your options. If you have yet to explore your educational or career options, visit here to get started.

Your Decision Making Process

Once you have a clear understanding of your options and self-knowledge, you can use this information to reflect on your decision-making process.


You can go through a decision making exercise here

Thinking about Your Decision Making

Have you ever had stage fright before a big performance or experienced butterflies before giving a presentation? These experiences are a natural reaction to stressful events in your environment. Similarly, some people become anxious or overwhelmed when thinking about career decisions they must make.

If you feel unsure about your career decision, a career advisor can help. The Career Thoughts Inventory (CTI) is an assessment available to you at the Career Center that can help you learn more about the way you think about your career choices and explore new ways of thinking about this decision.

To learn more about cognitive information processing (CIP) theory in career service delivery, visit the FSU Career Center's Center for the Study of Technology in Counseling and Career Development (Tech Center).


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