You’ll find all sorts of information about careers (and pretty much everything else) on the Internet. Some sites are fabulously useful, and others are less so, particularly for young career explorers. As a starting point, we recommend these well-established sites, all provided or sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor and with a good bit of data-sharing among them.
U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Occupational Outlook Handbook (BLS OOH)
The Occupation Outlook Handbook (OOH) information is thorough, well-organized, concise, and current, providing a comprehensive look at a wide variety of jobs. Each profile explains what someone in that role does, where they might work, and what education, skills, and experience they need, along with data about pay and job prospects. OOH also includes a list of similar occupations with high-level descriptions and links for more information (an excellent feature), plus a set of links for more information from professional associations and other sources. Though an exceptional career resource, notes that the BLS OOH is text-rich, with limited graphics.
Career OneStop’s Get My Future
Get My Future offers occupation profiles that are very visual, easy to understand, and downloadable, and with over 900 profiles available, curious kids (and adults) won’t lack for options. The site also has an interest assessment and skills checklist, along with a lot of practical information about education and training pathways, getting hired, and more. Though geared for users in high school or older, younger students will find their way around the site readily and enjoy its many resources (be sure to check out the list of scholarship opportunities for future reference!).
Career OneStop’s Video Library
This site features short videos about hundreds (yes, hundreds!) of different careers, thoughtfully organized into 16 clusters, or related types of work. Each video is packed with useful information, and the site even provides both closed captions and a transcript.
O*NET Online is not nearly as visually appealing as the other sites listed here, but it is loaded with detailed job information, including specific work activities, styles, and values; technology skills and other skills, abilities, and knowledge; and more. For students who are looking for that next-level set of data and are comfortable selecting from menus and working with a lot of text, O*NET is a great choice.
My Next Move
My Next Move is an O*NET site with a much friendlier design for students and other users. The job profiles are presented in simple, colorful blocks with lots of short bullet points, some graphics, and links to Career OneStop’s Video Library (see above). The site also features the O*NET Interest Profiler. For a high-level look at just about any occupation, My Next Move is an excellent next move.