Frequently Asked Questions

The JVIS is a complex and detailed instrument, so it's natural that you might have some questions about it. Listed below are the most frequently asked questions. Click on a question to see the answer. If your question is not answered below, send it to We'll respond quickly, and we may even add your question to this page.

What does the JVIS report tell me?

Your JVIS profile describes areas of career activity in which you have indicated a high interest. Your scores are compared with those of a variety of students and with people in different job groups. Your JVIS Extended Report and the Career Exploration Guide may be used, together with other information about your interests and abilities, in making educational and career decisions.

Will the results of the JVIS tell me whether or not I will succeed at a particular job?

The JVIS measures interests, not abilities. A high score on a scale or similarity to a job group indicates that you will probably be more satisfied working in that area. Whether or not you will be successful is another matter, depending on your skills, motivation, and opportunities.

Is this career interest report 100% accurate?

The JVIS was developed using the best and most modern procedures available. This report has also been very carefully designed to help you better understand your career interests, and you may have confidence in your results. However, no career interest survey is 100% accurate. Your interests may change somewhat from time to time. You should also consider other things in addition to interests in planning your education and career.

Why are there so many questions?

Accuracy is important if people use information from an inventory to help make decisions. In order to enhance the accuracy of your career interest assessment, the JVIS uses many questions of high psychometric (measurement) quality. This makes the assessment more trustworthy. Each Basic Interest Scale contains 17 activities. There are 34 Basic Interest Scales in the JVIS. Therefore, the total number of activities you would need to rate, if you were to answer each one individually, is 17 X 34 = 578. The unique forced-choice format employed by the JVIS means that you get a highly reliable assessment having responded to only half as many questions!

Sometimes I don't like either option but have to choose one, sometimes I like both and can only choose one. Does this pose a problem for my results?

This is a common concern, but the JVIS looks at patterns of responses over many pairs of activities. How you respond to one particular question is not of as much interest as your overall pattern of results. However, it is important to choose carefully which activity you like most (or dislike least) from each pair. Although the JVIS is interested in your overall pattern of responses, the overall pattern is only as good as the individual responses. Responding carefully will help you get a more accurate assessment of your own interests.

Why compare my answers to those of other people?

By comparing your answers to those of other people, the JVIS assesses your relative levels of interest in different areas. Much like a score on a test in school it is often interesting to know how others performed on the same test. If you scored 7 out of 10 on a test, it is clear that you answered 70% of the questions correctly. Whether you consider this to be good or bad will depend partly on your own score (70%), but information about how others performed is also relevant. If you also learned that most people scored between 40% and 50% on the same test, you might interpret your own score differently than if you found out that most other people answered all questions correctly. The JVIS builds in information about how other people respond to help you interpret areas in which you tend to be more or less interested than others.

With whom can I discuss these results?

If possible, you should discuss these results and your plans and aspirations with a career counselor, whose professional training and experience with career interest surveys and with the world of work may be helpful. Also, your counselor can tell you where to get additional educational and career information. You can find career counselors (or advisors) in most schools, colleges, and universities. In addition, some work in private practice or in local employment centers.

My Similarity to Job Groups does not seem to match my Basic Interest scale scores. Why is this?

It is possible to obtain a high Basic Interest scale score on a particular scale like Law, and not have a high score on the associated Job Group (e.g., Occupations in Law and Politics). This does not necessarily mean that these sources are providing conflicting information, or that one or both are incorrect. Rather, they are providing different information. Raw scores on the Basic Interest scales reflect the number of times that you have chosen activities associated with a particular occupation or activity. Percentiles give information about how your raw score on that scale compares to scores of other people. On the other hand, the Similarity to Job Groups represents the overall similarity of all 34 Basic Interest dimensions of your profile to those for persons working in various occupations. For example, lawyers usually obtain high scores on the Basic Interest scale for Law. They also usually show high scale scores on Technical Writing, Business, and Finance. If someone happened to obtain a high score on Law, but lower scores for the other three scales, this would result in a lower degree of similarity to the Occupations in Law and Politics Job Group.

My JVIS Basic Interest profile is not similar to any Job Group! What does this mean?

If, on your report, your similarity to all (or most) Job Groups is neutral, it could mean that you do not have a well developed and consistent interest pattern at the present time. Further exploration and experience in a variety of areas will help you find those things that interest you, and those that don't. You may want to explore career areas very widely. One strategy is to gather information about one or two jobs relevant to each of the 32 Job Groups. After you've gathered more information and gained experience in various areas you may wish to retake the JVIS.