Elements of Message Board Questions
Since the academic year began, there has a been huge increase in students asking questions on the career message boards. That's great news! We've also seen some excellent questions coming from students.
We also see some questions that are not well thought out. That is understadable due to the range in age and ability among students who can access Career Cruising. From time to time there are also nonsensical or even innappropriate messages posted. All of this is expected and something that we understand will happen. We try to screen all questions coming through so that our career coaches never receive those messages - but we can't catch everything. In some cases, you may receive a flagged message if a message contained something we feel you should know about.
In some cases students ask questions like "do you think I'd be good at this career?". What we've found is students
often think that career coaches are able to see their matchmaker results and provide feedback based on that. This is not the case. Career coaches can only see a student's first name and the question at hand.
What are the elements of a good message board question? Here are some suggestions that we've heard from Career Coaches and developed along the way:
Review other questions: Before asking a question a student should take a look at answers to previous questions to make sure they're not duplicating it.
Do research: The student should have at least a little understanding about the career at hand. They can get information directly from the Career Cruising profile or from other sources.
3. Ask specific questions: Instead of a question to a baker like "do you like your job?" rephrase it to say "What are the top three things that you like about your job?". The more specific and detailed the question is, the better and more informative the answers tend to be. And the career coaches probably enjoy answering those questions more!
4. Include important details: If the student wants to ask the career coach their opinion on something they are doing related to the career, the student should make sure to include the specifics. Instead of "would I be good at this career?" a student could say "I'm not the strongest mathematician, but I excel at problem solving; should I consider a career in Engineering?" That was an actual question from a student posted to a message board.
Use Career Cruising Resources:
It may also be helpful to review and/or use
Career Cruising's Message Boards Classroom Activity
. It's a helpful guide that builds a broader context and understanding of a career before generating ideas for questions to ask an expert on the message boards.
We truly appreciate the hard work that our education partners put in introducing their students to the tools that Inspire provides. The message boards present a unique way to inform young people about the careers and industries important to our communities, our region and our state. It's great to see these tools being put to use and benefiting our region's young people.
Thank you for your service!