RIASEC Careers

Work environments, like people, also have a predominant type, from creative to conventional. But just as with people, there will be more than one type working in any single occupational group. A pharmaceutical company, by necessity, employs many scientists and researchers, but there are also opportunities for artists (in advertising or packaging design), lawyers, maintenance staff, office assistants, and salespeople.

The eighteenth-century British author Laurence Sterne wrote, “What a large volume of adventures may be grasped within this little span of life by him who interests his heart in everything.” If your interests are myriad, you will have a hard time finding one single career that will satisfy all of them. If you focus on your most important ones for work, then extracurricular activities and hobbies can take care of the rest.

Space prohibits listing every conceivable interest or career option here. Those listed in this chapter provide some ideas to get you started. The U.S. Department of Labor publishes the Occupational Outlook Handbook with hundreds of job ideas. The appendices here include some more resources to help you in your search.

Now that you know your three-letter RIASEC code, look through the sample occupation list for each letter of your top three categories. Put a check mark next to the ones that look most interesting to you, and record them on the chart on page 178.

Realistic Careers (R)

Realistic people value practical, concrete things they can see and touch. They like to work with plants, animals, and real-world materials, tools, or machinery in scientific or mechanical areas rather than aesthetic or cultural ones. They like structure, clear goals, well-defined lines of authority, and straightforward tasks with observable, immediate, and tangible results. They are often found in hands-on careers in such fields as agriculture, engineering, technology, or skilled trades. They prefer working outdoors to jobs that involve working closely with others or lots of paperwork.

Agricultural inspector

Baker, cook

Carpenter

Construction inspector

Desktop publisher

Driver (truck, bus)

Electrician

Engineer

Emergency medical technician

Farmer

Firefighter

Forest and conservation worker

Freight or stock movers

Landscaper

Machinist

Maintenance worker

Mechanic

Painter

Pilot

Plumber, pipe fitter, steamfitter

Surveyor

Telecommunications line installer

Welder, cutter, solderer, brazer

Investigative Careers (I)

Investigative people prefer unstructured environments that are academic and/or involve research. They are often found in careers relating to science, mathematics, medicine, and other technical fields. Their work often involves ideas and thinking rather than people, things, or physical activity. They like tasks that entail discovering, collecting, and analyzing data or ideas. They are happiest with minimal supervision and structure and often like to work alone.

Anthropologist

Architect

Astronomer

Biologist

Botanist

Chemist

Civil engineer

Computer programmer, software engineer, systems analyst

Coroner

Dentist

Economist

Electrical engineer

Food technician

Forensic scientist

Forester

Geoscientist

Health and safety engineer

Market research analyst

Medical laboratory technician

Meteorologist

Network administrator

Oceanographer

Optometrist

Orthodontist

Pathologist

Pharmacist

Physician, surgeon

Psychiatrist

Psychologist

Speech language pathologist

Urban planner

Veterinarian

Artistic Careers (A)

Artistic people can be found in careers that relate to music, literature, dramatic arts, and other creative fields, in work environments ranging from arts organizations, film and television production, art galleries, museums, and theaters to publishing houses or advertising organizations. They prefer unstructured, flexible environments that reward unconventional and aesthetic values, where their work can be done without having to follow set rules or procedures. Hence, they tend to be frustrated in conventionally bureaucratic organizations.

Actor

Advertising artist or manager

Animator

Artist

Choreographer

Composer

Dancer

Designer (product, fashion, floral, graphic, interior, commercial, industrial, exhibit, set)

Director (stage, film, video)

Editor

Gallery staffperson

Landscape architect

Literature teacher

Merchandise displayer, window trimmer

Museum technician

Music store staffperson

Musician, singer

Photographer

Producer

Announcer (radio, television)

Reporter

Video editor

Writer (fiction, nonfiction, poetry, scripts, screenplays, plays)

Social Careers (S)

Social people prefer activities that involve interaction with other people. They are often found in careers that take advantage of their interpersonal skills, such as teaching, community awareness, and other helping vocations such as counseling or clergy. They like to give information and discuss philosophical questions. They don't gravitate toward highly ordered or routine activities or those involving machines, materials, tools, or lots of paperwork.

Anthropologist

Audiologist

Child care provider

Clergy

Clinical psychologist

Correctional officer, security guard, bailiff

Counselor (school, career, personal, substance abuse)

Dental hygienist

Fitness trainer, aerobics instructor, coach

Home health aide

Interpreter, translator

Legal assistant

Librarian

Mail carrier

Nurse

Police officer

Psychiatric caseworker

Public health worker

Social worker

Teacher (kindergarten, elementary, middle school, secondary, remedial education, special education, adult literacy)

Therapist (physical, speech-language, recreational, occupational)

Enterprising Careers (E)

Enterprising people prefer activities that involve selling, promoting, or leading. They like competition and making things happen. They avoid tasks that require attending to details, recordkeeping, careful observation or scientific, analytical thinking, and grow impatient with routine or systematic tasks. These people can be found in careers relating to sales, supervision of others, politics, and other leadership and managerial positions in organizations or entrepreneurial situations of all sizes. They like to be rewarded with money, power, or influence.

Athlete

Attorney

Bartender

Buyer

Claims investigator, adjustor

Construction manager

Cosmetologist, barber

Criminal investigator, detective

Dispatcher

Financial planner

Flight attendant

Manufacturer's representative

Occupational therapist

Producer

Public relations executive

Sales (retail, advertising, real estate, wholesale, insurance, medical, securities)

Small-business owner

Sports promoter

Stockbroker

Telemarketer

Travel agent

Waiter or waitress

Conventional Careers (C)

Conventional people prefer structured, businesslike work environments. They are found in occupations related to accounting or business and in computational, secretarial, or clerical positions. They like maintenance or administrative tasks where they can attend to details, day-to-day operations, and bottom-line results and where the focus is on the systematic manipulation of data, information, numbers, or money rather than ideas. They fit well into large organizations but don't tend to seek leadership positions.

Accountant

Actuary

Administrative assistant

Air traffic controller

Archivist

Auditor

Bank teller

Bill collector

Bookkeeper

Cashier

Computer support

Copy editor

Court reporter

Customer service

Economist

Financial analyst

Interviewer

Library assistant, library technician

Medical transcriber

Office clerk

Proofreader

Receptionist

Respiratory therapist

Tax preparer

Teacher assistant

  1. Home
  2. Career Tests
  3. Interests and Your Career
  4. RIASEC Careers
Visit other About.com sites: