College & Career Readiness

Georgia Pushes High Schoolers into Career Path Planning

High school students in the state of Georgia will test out a program that combines what subjects they do well in, what their interests are, and what kinds of jobs fit that intersection to help them find an academic or job direction. The program was announced by Senator Lindsey Tippins, who chairs the state's Education and Youth Committee.

Starting this fall, 10,000 sophomores and juniors will receive accounts on YouScience , an online program that asserts it can "predict precisely" the careers and majors that a student is most likely to succeed in. The company's "College Success Profile" runs participants through "game-like exercises" over the course of a couple of hours. The assessment includes a series of five- to 12-minute brain exercises to reveal aptitudes and interests and then matches those results to job profiles that suggest compatibility. From there, students can examine majors, internships and other paths for achieving that career. Access to the online service has three pricing tiers, from $59 for a basic account to $249 for an "ultimate" account that includes career matching and a walk-through of results.

Tippins recently led passage of state code that would allow a student to receive a high school diploma without having to pass any other kind of assessment as long as he or she met other requirements relating to postsecondary coursework, such as prerequisites for occupational certification or licensing or at least two certificates of credit in a specific career pathway.

"It's important to potential employers and future employees in this state that we develop our students into young adults who enjoy and thrive in their chosen career pathway," said Tippins in a prepared statement. "Students that utilize YouScience will have an opportunity to address the daunting adult issues students' statewide face, which include career readiness, career satisfaction, career retention and postsecondary education debt, as well as unemployment and underemployment."

The state's Department of Education will determine which schools will be part of the pilot, which will begin in the new school year.

About the Author

Dian Schaffhauser is a senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal and Campus Technology. She can be reached at dian@dischaffhauser.com or on Twitter @schaffhauser.

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