If you score high on Structural Visualization (the ability to think in three dimensions), but low on Graphoria (clerical speed and accuracy), you will most likely prefer working hands-on with objects to completing paper-and-pencil tasks. You may find it easier to demonstrate something you’ve learned than to take a written test about the same subject.

It is common, though, for traditional schools to equate academic success with performance on homework assignments, timed written testing, and other clerically-oriented tasks. This can sometimes cause difficulty and frustration for the student with a low Graphoria score, especially one who also scores high on Structural Visualization. The key to working with this combination of scores is to have a thorough understanding of how to use your structural visualization talent while taking into account your lack of speed in completing clerical work accurately. See Tips for Low Graphoria Students, which suggests strategies that may help you in school.

Being aware of your strength in three-dimensional imagining could inspire you to work through whatever challenges earning a credential may present. The following examples may encourage you to consider seriously any spatially-related or technical career you’ve been thinking about, even if you have found the academic requirements discouraging because of past or present difficulties in school.

The Natural Mechanic

You might know someone like this; you might even be this person: someone whose main interest is in how things work; someone who can understand blueprints and schematics; someone who enjoys building things or taking them apart—tearing down a car engine, perhaps, or rebuilding a computer or an appliance. Perhaps you’re someone who is definitely more excited about industrial arts classes than accounting or English, and whose grades as well as interests might reflect this. If you’re the first person people think of when the lawnmower breaks down or the computer needs a hardware upgrade, you’re the natural mechanic.

Some might say a born “fix-it” person is geared toward tools, not books. You can become a professional mechanic by learning on the job, but if you’re interested in a career in engineering or industrial design, you may feel discouraged by the amount of schooling these degrees require. You might be tempted, as students with this combination of aptitudes sometimes are, to give up on your career dreams. Keep in mind, however, that your options for classes and scheduling are greater at the college level than they usually are when you’re in high school. Discovering the source of your problems with traditional schoolwork and finding more appropriate school situations may offer you a light at the end of the tunnel when you’re feeling frustrated with the idea of continuing your academic education.

The Born Artisan

Perhaps you’re the born artisan: an expert in woodworking, for instance, and a stickler for finishing details. At school, though, maybe you’re a bored student who struggles with the seemingly insurmountable obstacles of writing papers and mastering quiz material, who can easily get discouraged by the amount of effort needed just to keep up. You can’t wait to get back to the project-in-progress in the garage, and would rather build a boat with friends than write for the school newspaper. When it’s time for the science fair or robotics competition, though, you feel energized and excited about school.

The road to satisfaction for some builder types might be in individual artistic pursuits. Others, however, might be happier with a combination of hands-on, three-dimensional work and lots of interaction with other people. One person might wish to become a sculptor, another might want to own a cabinet shop or construction business someday. In either case, the credentials can come through formal education or on-the-job training.

While business record keeping would not be enjoyable for most low-Graphoria scorers, being aware of the need to spend more time when doing clerical tasks can make them seem less intimidating. Also, inventory work, billing, payroll, and other clerical tasks can often be delegated to an office assistant or accountant who will handle the necessary paperwork. It’s beneficial to hire staff members to do the tasks that are challenging or uninteresting to you, as you are then free to concentrate on the spatial-thinking work you are naturally suited for and enjoy.

The Gifted Tradesperson

Maybe you’re someone who spent summers helping out at a construction site and now you’re seriously considering a career as an electrician or plumber. Friends and family may encourage a college education, and you may feel that to “be successful” would mean becoming an investment banker or lawyer. However, banking and law are not fields that could easily challenge your 3-D thinking ability. To use Structural Visualization, it’s important to consider the type of knowledge being learned, and low Graphoria suggests that how it is learned makes a big difference as well. Remember, there are many ways to be successful, and a traditional four-year college isn’t right for all students.

A highly skilled electrician might spend days completely rewiring an existing building, tackling a sophisticated network of circuits, or installing complex, computer-run solar panels or lighting systems. An experienced plumber might install a solar water heating system or intricate radiant floor heating, or work with a homeowner on a water filtration system. Most bankers or lawyers would find it highly challenging to do what the electrician or plumber does so easily. All might earn the same amount of money and be equally respected and admired, but each has attained success by a totally different pathway.

The Importance of Being Articulate

Regardless of which type of education you pursue or how long you go to school, another key factor in any kind of success is having a large and precise vocabulary. You could be the best computer tech around or a talented landscape designer, but if you can’t communicate effectively and express your thoughts clearly, you could hinder your chances of achieving success in your field. Knowing the right words may be necessary to getting the job, just as having the proper tools can be essential for getting the job done.

Success in the Work Place

The problems facing you as a low-graphoria, high-structural visualization student will frequently disappear, or at least lessen in impact, once you start working. The issues you face in school are often not the same as those you will face at work. Once on the job, there might be clerical staff available to do your routine paperwork, and your job performance will be judged more on the physical projects you complete—the engineering designs you draw, the bridges you build, the cabinets you make, the technical problems you solve—than on the paperwork you produce. When you understand your strengths and are “doing what comes naturally,” you are likely to be successful in your job and satisfied with your work.

Are you ready to choose intelligently?

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