Career Exploration

Career exploration involves helping students make decisions about their future. Some examples may include:

  • High school students unsure of what to do next
  • Mature individuals who have been in the workforce and are considering a change for any number of reasons
  • College students who are considering a change in their program of study

The counselling department utilizes a number of interest, value, personality and work styles inventories which help in career exploration.

The Four Stages of Career Planning

  1. Self-Knowledge (Who am I?): Exploring interests, skills, personality and values. Learning how these preferences impact job choice.
  2. Researching Options (What's out there?): Developing options and gathering information on realistic employment opportunities.
  3. Skills Training (What do I need?): Selecting appropriate education and training to reach employment goals.
  4. Job Search (How do I get the job?): Learning effective job search strategies in order to get a job.

Career Assessment Tools

A variety of tools are available to help you explore the following:

  • Interests
  • Work styles
  • Skills

These tools will help assist you in choosing an academic program that fits you and a career direction that makes sense.

Interest Surveys

  • Career Occupational Preference System Interest Inventory (COPS) - This inventory measures likes and dislikes and correlates the results with fourteen different career clusters.
  • Jackson Vocational Interest Survey (JVIS) - JVIS helps you determine work role dimensions and indicate work environment preferences. It assists you in focusing on an appropriate career direction.

Work Styles

Canadian Work Preference Inventory (CWPI) - A computer based inventory which assesses interest on five "scales". This is often used in the initial stages of career planning and development.

Skill Assessments

Career Ability Placement Survey (CAPS) - This series of tests provides a profile of strengths and weaknesses in eight primary abilities. It predicts success in relation to a variety of career areas.


Career Orientation Placement and Evaluation Survey (COPES) - COPES measures work related values and improves self-awareness.

Helpful Links

  • CanLearn - Canada's one-stop resource for the information and interactive planning tools you need to explore learning and educational opportunities, research occupations, develop learning strategies, and create the financial plans to achieve your goal.
  • Career Cruising - Career Cruising is a comprehensive and interactive career guidance resource that provides the information you need to make the right career choice. It includes in-depth profiles of hundreds of different careers, detailed information on colleges and universities, and something no other resource has: multimedia interviews with real people in every career. What better way to learn about careers than from the people who know them best?
  • Career Exploration - (Government of Canada) Look at your skills and interests, look at the world of work, make a plan, and manage your career.
  • Job Futures - Canada's National Career and Education Planning Tool
  • Ontario Job Futures - Ontario Job Futures is a publication which provides information on the current trends and future outlook for 157 occupations common to Ontario. It is a joint effort of the Province of Ontario and the Government of Canada.
  • Youth Opportunities Ontario - "You and the Job Market": A quick reference to today's job market for career counselling and career planning.
  • YouthPath - Provides information on youth employment, education, travel, money and lots of other items
  • Career Development eManual - Are you concerned about the future? Are you unsure how to start your career? Do you need to make changes in your direction? Are you concerned about finding stable and secure work? The Career Development eManual is designed to help you consider these questions and many, many more!