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FHSD's new YouScience tool helps students understand their strengths and possible career paths

FHSD's new YouScience tool helps students understand their strengths and possible career paths

Rather than just asking kids what they want to be when they grow up, Francis Howell School District educators are utilizing a new tool called YouScience that helps students begin to think about their futures from an authentic perspective. The goal of this assessment is to assist students with identifying their unique combination of strengths and interests, so that they can make informed decisions when seeking out high school courses, programs, and work-based learning opportunities that best align with these two areas. Additionally, this tool produces a comprehensive and authentic list of potential future careers for each student that are an overall “best fit” – careers that capitalize on a student’s natural abilities and passions. 

Assessments like YouScience have provided students guidance by informing them of their strengths, translating passions into potential careers, and providing detailed, customized reporting that includes information about how they best learn, work and interact with others.

Beginning with the 2021-22 school year, Francis Howell School District ninth-graders were given access to this YouScience assessment during the first semester. Now in the second year, hundreds of students have utilized and benefited from this assessment. 

YouScience is comprised of nine game-like, timed exercises that help students develop a better understanding of  their work approach, ability to exchange ideas, express opinions and relay information. The YouScience assessment takes 70-80 minutes to complete over the course of 4-6 weeks. 

After the exam, which is completely online, students receive their results within 24 hours. 

The results give students identified skills that are then matched to jobs. This list of careers are then broken down by how much education will be needed to attain each job, as well as average salaries. Students can then further sort their results, based on their aptitudes, interests, or a combination of both – an overall “best fit.”

FHSD College and Career Specialist Katie Vargas says that YouScience is a game changer because traditional personality and interest assessments don’t always tell the full story. They often leave out students’ natural abilities — the things they’re born to do well and will be satisfied doing everyday. 

“YouScience is a wonderful tool we are able to offer students here in our District. This tool helps show them career options that are the perfect match to who they are,” said Vargas. “Taking these tests really helps create a deeper self-awareness within students, creating greater opportunities for fulfilling, successful high school careers, as well as  a better vision for post-high school planning.”

To learn more about YouScience click here. If you have questions about taking the assessment or analyzing results, you can access a general troubleshooting document here, or you can email FHSD College and Career Specialist Katie Vargas.