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  • Writer's pictureDolphin Tribe

How vocational testing helps adolescents pursue their best possible future

Updated: Oct 25, 2022

If you (or your child) are gearing up to enter the job force or starting to look ahead at what university programmes are most suitable, vocational testing can be an invaluable tool. It helps young people work out the best choices for future study or careers, narrowing down the often overwhelming list of potential pathways.

Teenager - Vocational Testing
High school Teenager - Vocational Testing

At Dolphin Tribe, our experienced child and adolescent psychologist offers vocational testing that takes into account your interests and skills, personality, and unique psychological makeup so you can make the best decisions about your future. Here’s everything you need to know about our vocational assessments.

The difference between vocational and psychological assessments

There are two distinct types of assessments that child counselling specialists carry out: psychological testing and vocational testing. They are both important, but they are also very different.

Psychological testing helps health professionals and families better understand a child’s abilities and challenges. It helps us figure out where a child struggles, and where they thrive. It is the first step towards addressing challenges and helping a child reach their full potential.

Psychological assessment includes a range of testing, from cognitive to educational to behavioural. Whether you suspect ADHD or autism (ASD), are worried about behaviour or concerned about academic challenges, psychological assessments are key to setting you and your child up for success.

Adolescent vocational testing, on the other hand, is not about getting to the root of a challenging behaviour or learning difficulty. It is a comprehensive assessment to support young people who are getting ready to move past the school gates and pursue the best possible path forward.

Vocational assessments are important for Sydney’s youth

Increasingly, Australia’s younger generations are looking for more than earning potential or even areas of interest when it comes to their career. They also want meaning, fulfilment, and work/life balance. Since we spend at least a quarter of each week at work, it’s easy to see why choosing the right career is a major indicator of future happiness and wellbeing. It’s not a decision to be made lightly.

A vocational assessment with a trained child psychologist will help you identify which particular career or educational programme is likely to be a good fit. These tests examine your cognitive talents and psychosocial needs, your personality, and the environments you thrive in. They identify your strengths and challenges to help you find the best and most realistic employment options - and what pathway to take to help you get there.

Why work with a child psychologist to figure out your future

There is more than one option out there if you are looking for help making decisions about your future. You could hop online and fill out an aptitude test. You could talk to your guidance counsellor. You could enlist the help of a career adviser.

But if you are really serious about making the right choice, it’s best to work with an educational psychologist who has undergone extensive training in child and adolescent psychology. They will take a holistic and thorough approach to vocational testing, assessing learning styles and personalities, cognitive strengths and interests, psychological needs and motivations.

How our child therapist tests vocational aptitude

Do you have an image in your head of your school’s guidance counsellor handing out multi-choice aptitude surveys to a classroom of year 12 students? While this old-fashioned approach to vocational assessment is certainly outdated, the idea of vocation testing is not. Today, working with an adolescent psychologist to determine your best vocational routes combines many factors including:

  • Identifying your talents and strengths

  • Examining cognitive challenges

  • Discussing your interests and motivations

  • Factoring in your psychological needs and abilities

  • Assessing your unique learning style.

What you can expect from vocational testing with an adolescent psychologist

Vocational assessment with an experienced educational psychologist involves several steps.

Here’s what to expect:

  • A face-to-face meeting

  • Psychometric testing around general cognition (IQ)

  • A test measuring your emotional quotient (EQ) and vocational aptitude

  • A feedback session with the psychologist delving into the report and giving you an opportunity to discuss your feelings around the results.

Vocational programmes for Sydney’s youth

As well as offering vocational assessment with our child psychologist, Dolphin Tribe offers two programmes to help direct young Sydneysiders who are considering the future.

1. Vocational programme for adolescents and adults over 15

This programme is perfect for year 10, 11 and 12 students in Sydney who are starting to consider career options or university course selections. It is also suitable for adults contemplating a career change who want insight into the best path forward.

2. Pre-vocational programme for children under 15

This is for children too young for true vocational testing but who are interested (or perhaps whose parents are interested) in learning more about their IQ and EQ, and are curious about potential future pathways.

Talk to Dolphin Tribe about vocational testing

If you want to learn more about all of our assessments, read more here.

To book a vocational testing appointment for yourself or your child, contact us here.

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