Utilize career resources and your FOCUS 2 results to research an occupation and further understand self. Directions This assignment has two parts. Be sure to complete both for

Purpose

Utilize career resources and your FOCUS 2 results to research an occupation and further understand self.

Directions

This assignment has two parts. Be sure to complete both for full credit. Part 1 is mandatory. For Part 2, you will choose one of two options. 

CareerPlanningSystem-Focus2_NorthernVirginiaCommunityCollege.pdf


introduction_to_the_career_planning_process.pdf


HowtoSaveFOCUS2Results.pdf


CareerResearchAssignment.pdf

2/5/24, 1:00 PM Career Planning System – Focus 2 | Northern Virginia Community College

https://www.nvcc.edu/student-resources/career-services/focus2.html 1/2

Career Planning System – Focus 2

About Focus 2

FOCUS 2 is an online, interactive, self-guided career and education planning system that can help you:

Select a program/major based on your interests and aspirations. Discover occupations matching your personal preferences and attributes. Map out your career plans, present and future. Make informed career decisions.

Learn More: Introduction to the Career Planning Process

Get Started: View Getting Started With FOCUS 2 Handout

Access code: NOVA

VCCS student email account is required to create an account.

https://www.nvcc.edu/dist/files/sites/student-resources/career-services/introduction_to_the_career_planning_process.pdf
https://www.nvcc.edu/dist/files/sites/student-resources/career-services/FOCUS-2-handout-2242.pdf

2/5/24, 1:00 PM Career Planning System – Focus 2 | Northern Virginia Community College

https://www.nvcc.edu/student-resources/career-services/focus2.html 2/2

,

ARTICLE: INTRODUCTION TO THE CAREER PLANNING

PROCESS

THE CAREER & EDUCATION PLANNING PROCESS

Frank J. Minor, Ph.D.

Associate Professor, Emeritus, Saint Anselm College, NH

Career Dimensions, Inc., Copyright © 2014

WHY CAREER PLANNING IS NECESSARY

In today’s world of rapid change, transformation and progress, new career paths are constantly

unfolding, traditional ones are being changed and shifts are taking place in occupation skills and

educational requirements. These changes are a result of new technology, modifications in

organizational design and the trend towards global business operations. With all these changes, you

might ask “What is the point of planning ahead by developing a career plan?” It is important to be ready

for change with a set of career goals, strategies and options based on your interests, personality, values

and skills. Once you have a plan, you will be equipped to manage your career and take advantage of

changes in the economy and job market rather than becoming a victim of change.

WHO IS RESPONSIBLE FOR PLANNING AND MANAGING YOUR CAREER?

Planning your career is totally your responsibility. It is up to you to do the planning and take the

necessary actions to obtain the education and training that will support your career plans. However,

you can get help. For example, your advisor or career counselor can advise you about:

 your career planning strategy

 how to find information you need

 how to get around obstacles

 how to go about planning your current and long-term education and training

Keep in mind, throughout your life, you are the one who must make all the decisions about your career

and produce the results that support your goals. It’s up to you to control and navigate your own

destiny.

THE IMPORTANCE OF SELF ASSESSMENT

Understanding yourself is a critical aspect of career and educational exploration and planning. The more

you know about your career-related interests, values, skills, personality type and preferences, the better

equipped you will be to identify the career fields, major areas of study and training programs, and

education pathways that are compatible with your personal attributes. The FOCUS 2 system will help

you develop an accurate self-assessment of your personal qualities:

 Your Work Interests are a reflection of the kinds of

work-related activities and tasks you most enjoy

doing.

 Your Personality Type is a description of how you

react to certain situations and people and how you

make decisions, organize information and solve

problems.

 Your Values are a description of what is most

important to you in life. For example, you might

value earning a lot of money, helping other people,

being creative and artistic, having a secure and steady

job, etc.

 Your Skills are a reflection of your talents and the activities you easily learn and perform well.

 Your Leisure Time Interests are a reflection of the kinds of leisure-related activities you most

enjoy doing.

THE BIG PICTURE: YOUR LIFE PLAN

It is a good idea to plan your career based on the big picture, that is, your life plan. Ask yourself, “What

kind of life do I want to lead?” As you can imagine, your career decisions will dramatically impact your

lifestyle. Your occupation will influence

your

 income

 work hours

 travel

 job security

 colleagues and friends

 leisure time

 where you live

Questions you need to ask yourself about your life plan are:

 What principles am I committed to as a person? i.e. family, security, prestige, accomplishments.

 What kinds of experiences do I want in my life? i.e. travel, adventure, cultural.

 What personal talents do I want to develop? i.e. music, art, language, communication,

intellectual.

 How do I like to spend my leisure time? i.e. community services, recreation and sports, travel.

Finally, you must ask yourself whether the occupational goals and educational avenues you are

considering will be supportive of your life plan.

ROLES YOU PLAY IN YOUR LIFE

Being a worker will be interconnected with other roles you play in life. Examples of roles that are

affected by your career could include being a parent, a community citizen, a student, a recreationist.

Your career reaches beyond being a wage earner in your chosen occupation. For example, consider the

following scenario: If you were a wage earner, parent, and

student then clearly your income must be sufficient to pay

for the expenses incurred in these other roles.

Most people are primarily involved with two or three roles

at a time. Which roles you are focusing on depends upon

your age and life stage. For example, in college, your

principle roles may be as student and recreationist. Later in

life your principle roles may be as worker and parent. The

point is that throughout your life you will play a

combination of work, leisure, study, homemaking and

citizen roles that are intermixed. Therefore when you make

decisions about your career, you should take into consideration the effect of these career decisions on

the other areas of your life.

THE LIFE-CAREER RAINBOW

Refer to the Life-Career Rainbow Chart below to get a better picture of the kind of roles you may play at

various ages and stages of your career and life.

The two outer arcs of the Life-Career Rainbow show you the life stages you may move through during

your career and life, and your approximate age in each. The lower arcs of the Life-Career Rainbow show

you the different roles you may engage in while in different life stages and ages.

SUMMING IT ALL UP

Here is how to take the ‘Big Picture’ into consideration when making career and education plans:

First, when choosing an occupation, think about which of your options will most likely provide you with

self-fulfillment in all your roles, not only in the present, but in the future.

Second, periodically re-examine your career plans, take stock of yourself and what’s happening in your

life, and then make adjustments in your career as needed. For example, changes in your career field

may require that you learn new skills, or changes in your personal interests, values, social or family

situations may affect your career aspirations.

BENEFITS OF HAVING A CAREER PLAN

Once you have established your career goals you will be better able to make choices about your college

major and minor areas of study and the courses you should take. Your career goals will also enable you

to make decisions about personal developmental activities while in college such as internships,

volunteer work and summer jobs. Research has shown that there are many significant advantages and

benefits of having career plans. College students with career plans:

 Are less likely to make costly changes in their college education plans and are more likely to

graduate on time.

 Are more confident and satisfied with their choice of an occupation and major area of study.

 Achieve higher college grades because their decisions about their educational path are

compatible with and based on their personal interests, values and abilities.

 Earn higher incomes in their entry jobs

While in college, it’s a good idea to map out an action plan that leads you to your goals. The plan can

serve as a reference that you and your advisers can monitor and adjust as needed.

SEEKING EXPERT ADVICE: CAREER COUNSELING

In conjunction with using FOCUS 2, you may want to meet with a career counselor, mentor or advisor.

Be prepared to ask questions concerning:

 Your career-related interests, values, personality and abilities.

 Your present occupational, educational and college/training goals

and plans.

 Responsibilities or obstacles that are interfering with your career

and college/training decision-making.

 Your life plan, life style desires and strategies to achieve your goals.

Your career advisor can give you ideas and information to help you:

 Verify the rationale of your career decisions and education plans.

 Help you develop your long-term educational path.

 Pinpoint your personal development needs that will help you to achieve your goals.

 Suggest ways to get around any obstacles that are interfering with your decision-making and

planning.

 Formulate strategies and action plans to achieve your career and educational objectives.

Career Planning is a lifelong process of exploration and planning of your career and educational goals

compatible with your interests, values, talents, personality and aspirations. Career planning involves

thinking about which educational and occupational paths will provide you with satisfaction and

fulfillment in all aspects of your life, present and future.

,

2/5/24, 12:59 PM Career Research Assignment

https://learn.vccs.edu/courses/607975/assignments/13475624 1/6

Career Research Assignment

Due Tuesday by 11:59pm Points 75 Submitting a text entry box or a file upload File Types doc, docx, rtf, rtfx, and pdf Available until Feb 6 at 11:59pm

Start Assignment

Purpose Utilize career resources and your FOCUS 2 results to research an occupation and further understand self.

Directions This assignment has two parts. Be sure to complete both for full credit. Part 1 is mandatory. For Part 2, you will choose one of two options.

You will be referencing your work. The “Understanding & Avoiding Plagiarism” StudentLingo (http://www.studentlingo.com/nvcc) video will help you to learn how to use your sources effectively and what you need to do to document them correctly. You can also communicate with a NOVA librarian via http://www.nvcc.edu/library/students/citation.html (http://www.nvcc.edu/library/students/citation.html) .

Suggested resources to use for this assignment: FOCUS 2 – https://www.nvcc.edu/career-services/focus2.html (https://www.nvcc.edu/career-services/focus2.html) Occupational Outlook Handbook – https://www.bls.gov/ooh/ (https://www.bls.gov/ooh/) ONET – https://www.onetonline.org/ (https://www.onetonline.org/) Career One Stop – https://www.careeronestop.org/Videos/CareerVideos/career-videos.aspx (https://www.careeronestop.org/Videos/CareerVideos/career-videos.aspx) (Resource includes videos with transcripts.) Labor Market Intelligence (LMI) – https://www.nvcc.edu/osi/labor-market/index.html (https://www.nvcc.edu/osi/labor- market/index.html)

http://www.studentlingo.com/nvcc
http://www.nvcc.edu/library/students/citation.html
http://www.nvcc.edu/library/students/citation.html
https://www.nvcc.edu/career-services/focus2.html
https://www.bls.gov/ooh/
https://www.onetonline.org/
https://www.careeronestop.org/Videos/CareerVideos/career-videos.aspx
https://www.careeronestop.org/Videos/CareerVideos/career-videos.aspx
https://www.nvcc.edu/osi/labor-market/index.html
https://www.nvcc.edu/osi/labor-market/index.html

2/5/24, 12:59 PM Career Research Assignment

https://learn.vccs.edu/courses/607975/assignments/13475624 2/6

Virginia Education Wizard – https://www.vawizard.org/wizard/ (https://www.vawizard.org/wizard/) (“Browse by Occupation Name” section) NOVA’s Career Services – https://www.nvcc.edu/career-services/ (https://www.nvcc.edu/career-services/) (refer to Understanding Self and Exploring Careers sections.) Career Connection (job/internship database) – https://www.nvcc.edu/career-services/career-connection.html (https://www.nvcc.edu/career-services/career-connection.html)

Part 1: Research a Career (25 points)

Answer the list of questions below for your identified primary career option based on your FOCUS 2 assessment results and your research by using the resources provided above. Be sure to reference your research under “Source” to cite your sources and avoid plagiarism.

Primary Career Option:

Education/Training Requirements (identify the specific steps to take to prepare for this career option. For example, what level of degree is required; what should one major in?):

Outlook:

Salary:

Primary Work Activities:

Skills:

Values:

Reasons(s) why career option is of interest to you:

Source(s):

Part 2: Create a career vision for your future OR assess and strengthen your career readiness. (50 points)

*Choose either Option 2A (Understanding Self) OR 2B (Am I Career Ready? Assessment) – do not complete both parts.

https://www.vawizard.org/wizard/
https://www.nvcc.edu/career-services/
https://www.nvcc.edu/career-services/career-connection.html
https://www.nvcc.edu/career-services/career-connection.html

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Option 2A: Understanding Self

Understanding Myself Better:

Reflect thoroughly to fully answer the following questions (type your answers below each question):

1. What three things about work are most important to me? 2. Which academic subjects do I excel in? 3. Where have I had successful experiences (personal and/or professional)? 4. What do the people I am close to say I do well? 5. What skills would I like to develop?

Future Life Vision Paragraph:

In 6 – 8 sentences, detail the work you will do; the place (where you will live), lifestyle (how you live and the kinds of people/places in your life), community activities, etc.

The following questions can help shape your future vision:

What things do I want to accomplish in my life? What is my dream career? What am I passionate about? When I think about a happy life, what does that include?

Option 2B: Am I Career Ready Assessment?

The Am I Career Ready? assessment will help you assess and strengthen your career readiness in 8 competencies (skills) that have been identified by the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) and are in-demand by employers.

1. Access the Am I Career Ready? assessment in the Career Planning Foundations section of FOCUS 2. 2. Complete the assessment. 3. View Your Results. Click Continue to view a page that provides feedback and a list of ways to develop each skill.

2/5/24, 12:59 PM Career Research Assignment

https://learn.vccs.edu/courses/607975/assignments/13475624 4/6

Career Research Assigment

4. Identify a minimum of two ways you would like to develop each skill. 5. Access your results by utilizing the Review and Print My Portfolio option in the Career and Education Planning Results section. 6. Save your results to your computer and submit it as an attachment along with the Career Research Worksheet (Part 1) via Start

Assignment button at the top of the page. Once the submission tool appears at the bottom of this page, upload the required files. Be sure to review your work before submitting to ensure the entire document is viewable.

How to submit: Use this Career Research Worksheet.docx (https://learn.vccs.edu/courses/607975/files/156831426?wrap=1) (https://learn.vccs.edu/courses/607975/files/156831426/download?download_frd=1) (https://learn.vccs.edu/courses/506198/files/133782274/download?download_frd=1) to complete Part 1 (mandatory) and Part 2 – Option 2A (if selected). Save your document to your computer and submit it as an attachment via the Start Assignment button at the top of the page. Once the submission tool appears at the bottom of this page, upload the file. Review your work before submitting to ensure the entire document is viewable. Alternately, you can copy and paste the questions, and submit via the text entry tab that appears after you click the Start Assignment button.

Refer to this Career Research Worksheet Example.pdf (https://learn.vccs.edu/courses/607975/files/156831434?wrap=1) (https://learn.vccs.edu/courses/607975/files/156831434/download?download_frd=1) as a guide for completing Part 1 (mandatory) of this assignment; and Part 2 – Option 2A if selected. Refer to this Am I Career Ready Assessment Example.pdf (https://learn.vccs.edu/courses/607975/files/156831657?wrap=1) (https://learn.vccs.edu/courses/607975/files/156831657/download?download_frd=1) as a guide for completing Option 2B.

Grading This assignment is worth 75 points toward your course grade.

https://learn.vccs.edu/courses/607975/files/156831426?wrap=1
https://learn.vccs.edu/courses/607975/files/156831426/download?download_frd=1
https://learn.vccs.edu/courses/607975/files/156831426/download?download_frd=1
https://learn.vccs.edu/courses/607975/files/156831426/download?download_frd=1
https://learn.vccs.edu/courses/506198/files/133782274/download?download_frd=1
https://learn.vccs.edu/courses/607975/files/156831434?wrap=1
https://learn.vccs.edu/courses/607975/files/156831434/download?download_frd=1
https://learn.vccs.edu/courses/607975/files/156831434/download?download_frd=1
https://learn.vccs.edu/courses/607975/files/156831434/download?download_frd=1
https://learn.vccs.edu/courses/607975/files/156831657?wrap=1
https://learn.vccs.edu/courses/607975/files/156831657/download?download_frd=1
https://learn.vccs.edu/courses/607975/files/156831657/download?download_frd=1
https://learn.vccs.edu/courses/607975/files/156831657/download?download_frd=1

2/5/24, 12:59 PM Career Research Assignment

https://learn.vccs.edu/courses/607975/assignments/13475624 5/6

Criteria Ratings Pts

25 pts

25 pts

25 pts

Part One: Research a career

25 to >20.0 pts Complete

Uses paraphrasing or own words to complete all questions accurately related to chosen career. Source(s) cited per example/citation resources.

20 to >15.0 pts Less than complete

Has two or less questions missing and/or source(s) not cited.

15 to >0.0 pts Somewhat complete

Has two or more questions missing.

0 pts Missing

Did not complete part one.

Part Two: Option 2A – Understanding Self: Understanding Myself Better OR Option 2B – Am I Career Ready? assessment

25 to >20.0 pts Complete

Option 2A – Thoroughly answered all five questions. OR Option 2B – Submitted the Am I Career Ready? assessment results.

20 to >15.0 pts Less than complete

Option 2A – Thoroughly answered at least four questions.

15 to >10.0 pts Less than complete

Option 2A – Thoroughly answered at least three questions.

10 to >5.0 pts Somewhat complete

Option 2A – Thoroughly answered at least two questions.

5 to >0.0 pts Somewhat complete

Option 2A – Thoroughly answered at least one question.

0 pts Missing

Option 2A – No questions answered. OR Option 2B – Did not complete the Am I Career Ready? assessment.

Part Two: Option 2A – Understanding Self: Future Life Vision Paragraph OR Option 2B – Am I Career Ready? assessment skill development section

25 pts Complete

Option 2A – Wrote a coherent future life vision paragraph consisting of a minimum of 6 sentences. OR Option 2B – Identified a minimum of two ways to develop each skill on the Am I Career Ready? assessment.

25 to >0.0 pts Less than complete

Option 2A – Wrote a coherent future life vision paragraph consisting of less than 6 sentences. OR Option 2B – Identified a minimum of two ways to develop four skills on the Am I Career Ready? assessment.

0 pts Missing

Option 2A – Did not write a future life vision paragraph and/or paragraph was incoherent/unrelated. OR Option 2B – Did not complete the Am I Career Ready? assessment.

2/5/24, 12:59 PM Career Research Assignment

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Total Points: 75

Criteria Ratings Pts

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