Case Studies

Student Profile – Ashley

img0121Ashley was a sophomore at a private college and was very frustrated because she had switched college majors four times. She was interested in pursuing a career that would enable her to help people. Ashley graduated from a private high school with a 3.9 GPA. As a college sophomore she had a 3.0 GPA. Ashley took the Highlands Ability Battery hoping to be able to determine a field of study. After completing the Highlands Ability Battery, Ashley learned that she was a strong specialist. As a specialist Ashley would prefer to work and solve problems independently.

She would enjoy studying one field in depth and would need to ensure that her work provided the opportunity to become a subject matter expert in her field. Given her intermediate time frame, Ashley would do best in a career where developing relationships and rapport were more important than a “one shot” success. This ability is also helpful to students who are planning to do post graduate work because they are naturally able to delay gratification for a longer range goal. Ashley discovered that she has the ability to see relationships among seemingly unrelated events,
situations, or information thus indicating that she is a diagnostic problem solver. She demonstrated a strong ability to move from the general to the specific in solving problems and arranging ideas and information in a logical order. She discovered that she can see how a change in one part of a puzzle or structure will affect the other parts.

To find meaning and satisfaction in her career Ashley needs hands-on work and achieve tangible results (structural thinker). Ashley also learned that she has four very strong learning channels.

Ashley and I created a Personal Vision Plan which included the results of the Battery and six separate factors – skills, interests, personal style, family, values and goals. I recommended that Ashley “job shadow” medical fields specifically physician and physician assistant. Three weeks later during our follow-up, Ashley decided to pursue a career as a physician assistant.

At the one year follow-up, Ashley’s GPA was a 3.7 and she was admitted into the biomedical sciences department to become a physician assistant.

Student Profile – Peter

img0122Peter is a senior at a public high school. His favorite subject is French. Peter took the Highlands Ability Battery because he really didn’t have a clue about college. He discovered some interesting things about himself. Peter learned that his best learning channels were verbal memory (ability to recall written information) and tonal memory (ability to recall auditory information). Peter learned that part of the reason why he had difficulty in school remembering graphs, charts, diagrams and lectures typically given by PowerPoint presentations (commonly used by college professors) was that his design memory was in the 5th percentile. I suggested that Peter ask his teachers to email the PowerPoints to him so that he could read the PowerPoint information out loud or silently thereby using his two best learning channels.

Peter also learned that he was a combination of a specialist and a generalist. As a specialist he would enjoy studying one field in depth and would need to ensure that his work provided the opportunity to become a subject matter expert in his field. As a generalist he would work best as a team player and be able to work well within an organization. He would need to insure his work is diverse and include people.

The results from the Highlands Ability Battery also indicated that he would be most satisfied when he can see results from his work in six months to a year. He might find that his work lacks meaning if he has to wait years to get an outcome. Peter makes decisions best by review of experience and knowledge and works best within a structure and with tried-and-true procedures. Peter’s biggest asset is his ability to brainstorm. This ability is especially important in selling, presenting, and teaching. Peter is an abstract thinker who is most comfortable in the world of words, idea, concepts, people and relationships. After combining all the abilities, Peter’s Work Types were performing, teaching, managing and experiential problem solving (using experiences in a previous situation as a guide to act in the present). Peter and I created a Personal Vision Plan which included the results of the Battery and six separate factors – skills, interests, personal style, family, values and goals. Peter expressed an interest in using the French language as a career. I recommended that Peter consider majoring in education teaching French or teaching English as a second language at a French school. I also recommended that Peter consider an international business minor to give him some flexibility in his career as a foreign language teacher. Peter was encouraged to “job shadow” a foreign language teacher.