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Mar 31 2011

Technology in the Classroom

The more technology is developing in our country, the more parents, teachers, and administrators are concerned about making sure that students understand how to use it. Schools are now integrating technology into the curriculum This can involve training in the use of computers, navigating the internet, and exposure to virtual classrooms. These schools also make options available such as career assessment tools, postsecondary education courses, AP testing aides, or credit recovery.

The standards used to determine the scores of each state were divided into two groups: capacity and use. The capacity a state has was determined by how adequately trained the teachers and administrators are, whether their initial license requires technology courses, and if it requires ongoing technology training or testing as a part of relicensing. The use of a state was determined by whether a state has a standard requiring technology education, tests students on technology, establishes virtual schools, and establishes computer-based assessments.

Surprisingly, most of the highly integrated states are located in the Southeast. They also offer the most additional options such as state standards for technology education, required technology courses, virtual schools, and computer based assessments. These states are some of the most economically depressed, and yet, they offer students the most in technology education.

New England was only average in their technology leadership scores and offered only a few of the options that the Southeast offered. New England, however, is the most economically healthy region in the union. Many of these states offered only state standards and computer-based assessments.

The three lowest scoring states were Montana, Nevada, and the District of Columbia. Montana is one of the more prosperous states in the unions though, just as with the case of New England. The District of Columbia failed outrightly. While the District of Columbia is only a province, they are still equipped with federal funding and school systems.

The mention of the economic stability of the region is to demonstrate that these statistics do not align with the assumption that economic stability ensures technology advances within school systems. These schools offer nothing more than a state standard and in all three cases they failed in their ability to provide the capacity for technology education. That means that students had barely any education in technology presented to them during their federally funded education.

The importance of training students in technology in preparation for their future cannot be stressed enough. Whether it’s providing them with the opportunity to take a simple job aptitude test or give them college credit through virtual classrooms, students need the chance to grow with technology. Yet, it’s surprising exactly where these students would have to go in order to gain the most technologically advanced education. States such as West Virginia, Georgia, and South Dakota are some of the last states that people would think of. Yet, some of the states that people would expect great technology opportunities from such as Vermont, California, or Connecticut are providing only average scores.

By Career Explorer

Mar 31 2011

Job Search Continues for Millions

The economic state of the union is complicated to economist and down-right confusing to people who never stepped foot into an economics class. The many components that determine the health and vitality of the American marketplace go far beyond aspects such as interest rates, stock prices, or unemployment rates. Even such statistics as crime rate, personal income per capita, and fastest growing occupations are considered when describing the state of the economy. While it sounds as if these things only make the economic situation seem more baffling, a simple graph (http://blog.careerexplorer.net/ce-general/the-state-of-jobs-in-the-usa) can help visually explain.

As with real estate, the economic health has improved or suffered regionally. Someone living in the upper regions of Middle America and New England has the highest economic health of the country. Those living in the South has the most depressed economic heath. The Southwest states are surprisingly hit hard by the economic downturn, with states such as Nevada and Arizona rated as lowest overall economic health. The West coast fared little better as well, while the upper East coast is prospering with above-average results.

There are things that can be done to help better personal situations despite the overall economic outlook. Surprisingly, truck driving, food preparation, and cashiers account for only 10% of the most employed jobs. Retail (selling goods of any kind) account for a staggering 82% of most employed jobs in America. Within that 82% is wide range of skills, personalities, and interests which are needed. A career assessment can help an applicant not only narrow their search, but understand what personal interests they possess. If fashion and clothing is of interest, selling clothing in a middle-level clothing chain would be a far more attractive prospect than selling books in a locally owned bookstore.

A job aptitude test is a series of questions that the applicant answers. There are no right answers, simply the choice that explains the applicant best. There are many of these career assessment tests available online for free. The results explain what jobs an applicant is qualified for or has the personal skills to preform well. A person who can’t stand the great outdoors would not survive well as a forest ranger. While this seems obvious, some careers are not as easy to determine how well a person is suited for it. If someone has a hard time making friends or speaking with strangers, than even a job as a secretary can seem daunting and hard to cope with. Likewise, if someone has a difficult time being solely responsible for decisions and making them quickly in high stress situations, then management would cause anxiety and unhappiness. These tests are tools to help ensure that the applicant can find a career that will fit for years, not just until a better one comes along.

By Career Explorer

Mar 31 2011

Does higher education mean a higher salary?

Everyone knows that there is a large correlation between educational level and salary. However, having a higher education does not always mean that you are able to find a higher paying job and many factors should be considered before deciding to pursue a higher educational degree.

The average income of a college graduate is $49,303 where the average income in the United Sates overall is $32,104, a large gap illustrating how education can improve your job opportunities and income. The salary for careers that only require a high school diploma or GED is between $17,700 and $33,300, on the other end of the spectrum, salary for careers that require a Ph.D., M.D., or law degree is between $53,500 and $166,400+. This illustrates what an enormous income gap there can be between someone who has a higher degree and someone who only has a GED; but this is only the potential gap, and while the actual gap is large, it is much smaller then the potential.

Is having a better opportunity to find a high paying job worth all the work involved in getting a higher education? Not only does it take a lot of work but it also costs money, and even puts many in debt. Career assessment and job aptitude tests are very useful tools that should be included in this decision; they can be very useful in helping find which career you could do well in and would enjoy, therefor impacting your decision on higher education. Knowing what you career you would like to pursue is extremely helpful when deciding whether of not to pursue higher education and can prevent many from making the wrong decision and can even motivate some to make the right one.

Though a higher educational degree will give someone a much greater opportunity in finding a higher paying career, it does not guarantee that they will be able find one. There is a large difference between the average income for a college graduate and the average income for someone in the United States, which shows that it would be worth it to obtain a higher degree. However, there are more factors to consider the as the job market is constantly changing and unemployment is high; which has created a whole new set of problems for recent college graduates that are looking for work. But there are still many jobs that are growing and are expected to continue to to so over the next few years.

The decision to pursue higher education should never be taken lightly. Career assessment and job aptitude tests can be very useful when making this life changing decision. Overall, although salary does improve with higher education it does not guarantee it.

By Career Explorer

Mar 21 2011

Money Facts

Cold Hard Facts About Money

There are some interesting facts about money that may make you think twice before holding that dollar bill with your lips. Nine out of ten US dollar bills have traces of E. Coli, Staphylococcus and cocaine. Chinese banknotes are even worse with 178,000 bacteria colonies on each one and cocaine residue on one out of 10. There is $1,999,897,000,000 in circulation now and that’s a lot of bacteria.

With all of this bacteria, cash has a short lifespan. Only 21 months for a dollar bill, 16 months for a five dollar bill, 18 months for a 10, 24 months for a 20 dollar bill, 55 months for a fifty and 89 months for a 100.

Right now there are six denominations of bills circulating, but there have been twice that many. The $500, $1,000, $5,000, $10,000 and $100,000 bills are no longer in circulation. There are $1.5 billion in two dollar bills in circulation, but they are no longer being printed.

Have you ever wondered what happened to your old jeans? You may be spending them everyday. Every day the US prints $629 million. In one year about 2.7 billion are ones and 1.8 are hundreds. Fives, 10s, 20s and 50s are around 370 million each. US currency bills are made from 75 percent linen and 25 percent cotton, and very bill contains a little recycled denim.

It is not always easy to detect counterfeit money. There is $200 million worth of counterfeit money circulating in the US. $45 million was printed in North Korea and eight out of 10 of those bills were printed on a personal computer.

ATM machines are a convenient way to collect the cash you need. They seem to have an unlimited supply, but they actually only contain 1,500 bills and only about 40 new ones are added each day. The fees for using them are about $640 million a year for the bank.

One more interesting piece of information about money is about the penny. Every year congress considers discontinuing the penny, after all it costs 1.2 cents to manufacture and the US loses $45 million per year on pennies and nickels. There are 150 billion in circulation and people seem to like it that way. Every year congress decides to continue making the penny.

I order to earn your share of money in circulation now, take a free career aptitude test that will give you the right guidance for selecting employment. A career aptitude test may help you decide what you want to do with the rest of your life. If you already have a job or career but you think it’s really not for you, then you need a career assessment test. Career assessment and an aptitude test will help you determine your strengths and weaknesses and make it easier for you to find an interesting and enjoyable future.

By Career Explorer

Mar 18 2011

Americans saving money

How Much do Americans Save?

Americans are notorious for failing to put aside money for tomorrow. The median household income in the U.S. is $50,000. This pushes the taxpaying household into the 25% bracket. Adding back the average $3,000 tax refund, the median household disposable income is $40,500 a year.
On average, Americans spend 94% of their disposable income, leaving only 6% for all savings accounts combined. Using the median household income, this means the average household in the U.S. only puts $2,400 total away. That’s $200 a month towards retirement, college, and saving for a home. Not only do most American households fail to save enough, but nearly half – 43% – spend more money than they earn, putting themselves into debt they can’t pay back.

Remember that 6% of disposable income being saved on average? That figure is not proportionately spread, as only 41% of Americans save regularly, leaving more than half as sporadic or non-savers.

Have Americans always had these poor saving habits? While they’ve regularly fallen behind on savings, there have been savings highs and lows in the past. Naturally, the Great Depression was a bad time for savings. Not only were Americans not saving, but the average savings rate during 1932 was a negative 1.1%, meaning Americans spent 1.1% more money than they had. While 1932 showed a low point in savings, 1944 showed a high point in savings in the United States. During World War II, the savings rate soared to 26% of disposable income. For the most part, the savings rate in the U.S. has hovered between 5 and 10%.

So, how do the saving habits of Americans compare to those abroad? The average Chinese worker saves a whopping 30% of their income, while the Swiss save 14% and Germans save 13%. There’s an obvious gap between U.S. savings and other countries.

Why do Americans ignore the future when handling money? American culture is different from other cultures. In the U.S., there’s an attitude of needing to have things now even if you can’t afford it. Credit cards help people secure items they want immediately. Once credit card debt is racked up, many Americans turn a blind eye to their debt and pretend there isn’t a problem. People in the U.S. also need to constantly compare themselves to their friends and neighbors, being sure to have the biggest, best unnecessary toys they can get.

How can you find a career that pays enough to buy what you need and want and still have money to save? Take a free career aptitude test! A career assessment test can pinpoint your strong points and ensure you go into the field that is most lucrative for you. Don’t get caught without savings – take a career aptitude test today and be on your way to a rewarding career.

By Career Explorer