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Engage in Personal Development:

Successful people tend to be planners. They think strategically and put pen to paper to create development plans. You are the CEO of your career, so don’t wait to start managing it like one. By developing a personal plan, you will gain a sense of control and make better decisions as you move forward. This process begins with defining your priorities, your goals, and your strengths and identifying those areas you need improve and develop during your graduate studies. We can help. Come see us.

As you begin to think actively about your personal and professional development, we recommend taking the following steps:

  • Complete a self-assessment of professional skills and abilities
  • Outline career, professional and personal goals
  • Create a CV and a resume

Engage in Robust Self-Assessment:

Personal and career assessments help you to learn more about yourself in a variety of ways. What do you already know? What are your personality traits and how well do they align with your current career track? Take this opportunity to invest in your future by identifying those jobs that fit your personality and that will give you the best shot at personal and professional growth and satisfaction.  

  • Informal Self-Reflection Exercises: To establish a foundational understanding of your skills, interests, and values, download and complete our informal self-reflection exercises prior to meeting with your Graduate Career Consultant. 
  • ImaginePhDGeared toward (but not exclusive to) Humanities and Social Science graduate students, this brand new tool offers interest, skill, and values assessments, as well as the ability to connect your results to information about 15 relevant job families. Significant resources are also available for learning about each job family, whether you take the assessments or not. Notre Dame is a sponsoring institution, and it was developed by the Graduate Career Consortium. Get started at
  • MyIDP: Focused on science and other STEM careers, MyIDP provides exercises to help you examine your skills, interests, and values; a list of 20 scientific career paths with a prediction of which ones best fit your skills and interests; a tool for setting strategic goals for the coming year, with optional reminders to keep you on track; and articles and resources to guide you through the process.
  • Career Leader: CareerLeader is a fully integrated approach to business career self-assessment built on the premise that one's interests, motivators, and skills will drive their future career success and satisfaction. This assessment is offered at no cost and is based on the needs and career plan of the individual student. Please discuss with your Graduate Career Consultant if you are interested in taking this assessment.
  • Keirsey Personality Assessment: According to their website, the Keirsey Temperament Sorter®-II (KTS®-II) is "the most widely used personality instrument in the world. It is a powerful 70 question personality instrument that helps individuals discover their personality type. The KTS-II is based on Keirsey Temperament Theory™, published in the best-selling books; Please Understand Me® and Please Understand Me II, by Dr. David Keirsey."
  • Skills Matcher: Sponsored by the Department of Labor, this tool will help you evaluate your skills and match them to relevant job types.
  • 16 Personalities: A free personality test that offers an in-depth analysis of personality types as well as relationship and career advice.

Recommended Reading:

Why Career Self Assessments Matter, Inside Higher Education

*Listings do not imply endorsement by the University of Notre Dame or Graduate Career Services. The resources are provided as potential information sources only.