Unit two MRDD
Purpose: To use various activities of inquiry.
In this unit, we will apply inquiry in a modified form. Instead of the individual directing the questions completely, we will guide them through a series of options to help them formulate questions about possible goals or career path. The following unit has a series of different activities to help the employment specialist/counselor ascertain various pieces of information that will in the long run help them match a good placement with the individual. These exercises are designed to practice different forms of guided inquiry.
Meeting: Set up a time to meet with your individual in a neutral setting that will put the individual at ease. You want them to be able to talk and not be influenced by anyone else in their responses, yet they need to feel safe enough to talk to you. It is not a good idea to have your first meeting in a restaurant as there are far too many distractions and the person will focus on that, or having something to eat, instead of you. Also, if you are meeting in a residence, try to be alone, as often the individual may respond according to what he/or she may think other people in the room will expect them to say. Have the parent/guardian met with you and then have them leave or remain out of sight. If the individual is not comfortable at this first meeting, do not proceed with these exercises until you have gained their trust.
Image used with permission from CDS,Inc.
Activity one: Heroes
Everyone should have a hero. Let's first define a hero. "A person noted for feats of courage or nobility of purpose, or noted for special achievement." These special achievements can be great or small. The important thing is this person has made an impact on your individual’s life. It can be a movie star, or a sports figure. It just may be a parent or a special friend. The thing is this person may just be a nice person who has done nothing major in the scheme of world history, but to individual, they are special. In this discussion I want you to list who is/are their hero(s). See if you can find out the reasons for their choices. For example, they may say their father. Find out what he does. What are some of the things that s/he may do with the individual that makes him special? The idea is not to make a judgment, but to start determining personality traits that the individual holds in high esteem. I will use one individual for an example who loved to look at fashion magazines. She adored a particular model and often would dress in styles she thought were similar. She was placed in a restaurant and did not like it. However, after going through some exercises and talking with her, it was her dream to work in retail around nice clothes. I found a small shop that needed someone who put stock out and help arrange items and do modest cleaning. It was a perfect fit. This activity may take some time, and the individual may not be forth coming at first. Give them time. You can come back to this activity at any time.
Activity two: Personality test
This exercise is lengthy and may require the specialist/counselor modifying the questions to help the individual get through the exercise. It really is amazing how accurate this is. This is an online test based on Jung-Myers-Briggs personality approach which provides a type formula, type description, and career choices. This is an excellent way to determine the formula for your individual personality style. This test may be too long to do in one sitting, so I recommend that you print it out and then work on it together and then submit the answers for the four letter personality type. The questions also may be difficult for your individual to understand so you may have to paraphrase them. Although in a real scientific test, that may skew the results, this is not true science. Another good idea is to have someone who knows the individual well answer another test about the person and then review their answers. Sometimes an individual has a self-concept that may not be a true picture. . In reality, we all have a misguided self-concept, but we have the ability to cognitively know better. Once you have determined a formula code for your individual, you can then start to define areas of placement.
If you have never done a Briggs Myer test, take it yourself first. Go through all 72 questions. It does not take long. Once you take the test, read the results. You may not like all that it says but I have found it to be pretty accurate. I am an ENFJ, which is someone who is a good teacher and counselor.
Briggs-Myer-Jung test: 
Read through the description and also the career choices. We are going to work on career choices in the next unit. This will give you a guide to what works with the personality of your individual, which ultimately will make for a surprising more successful placement. As I stated in the introduction: "Inquiry is an approach to learning that involves a process of exploring the natural or material world, that leads to asking questions and making discoveries in the search for new understandings.”
Humanmetrics.com. (2004) Jung Typology Test. Retrieved from the Internet on February 25,2008 at http://www.humanmetrics.com/cgi-win/JTypes2.asp
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