Ms. Hardin on YouScience


YouScience has been in every CHS advisory class over the past few weeks. The program was instilled by CTE and American Sign Language teacher, Adriann Hardin. 

“YouScience is an aptitude-based program that allows students to participate in various brain games, as they call it, but each of the brain games measures a specific aptitude,” explained Hardin. 

The program tests for 11 different aptitudes. Based on those aptitudes, when students complete the games, it gives students career pathways they may be interested in. It also allows students to know more about themselves by showing what people they generally work well with and what environment they work best in, among other career-based analysis. 

Students aren’t the only ones taking the YouScience test. In fact, all of CHS’s staff participated in the program  prior to it reaching students’ Chromebooks. Hardin said, “I think the teachers or staff have a little more buy-in, right? We’ve been through the whole process, so we’ve taken all of the brain games, we’ve looked at it, but we’ve also taken it from an adult perspective where we look at it like ‘Oh, this is a really cool opportunity for our students.’”

Additionally, Hardin mentioned the school looked into other “future forecasting” programs, but they were not as detailed as YouScience. After being skeptical of the program and giving the test a try, Hardin was shocked at the level of accuracy the tests produced. 

Completing YouScience is a big ask for students, but Hardin believes in its benefits. “I know it’s a big ask for our students, it’s a big ask for our teachers, but it is really going to help drive direction for our students…. Once you’re finished… I think the information that’s provided to all of the students will be super, super valuable. We’re hoping that our students use it for forecasting and looking at schools and colleges, and hopefully in senior success you guys are doing some work around it too,” said Hardin. In addition, the program has a built-in four-year planning tool that students can take advantage of. 

Aside from using the program for students’ individual guidance, it is also being used to help direct students to the resources they need to be successful in the paths they are interested in. “There’s really cool things for us as grownups, for reporting purposes and data collection. Like, I can pull a report that says these young ladies are interested in manufacturing,” said Hardin. “So I can now go and talk to these 12 girls and be like ‘Hey, I see you have an aptitude for manufacturing, you should take metals.’”

So why is there so much Advisory time set aside for these tests? Hardin explains that because this was the first time the school has used YouScience they wanted to have extra time for students to get set up. In-class attendance issues also navigated their choice to do this for several weeks.

 “We have to plan for those kinds of things. If I were to do it again, I think we could probably do it in two days, but then you’re rushed, so is it better to be rushed or to have extra time? Who knows, the right answer to that,” said Hardin

Hardin stands her ground when she mentioned this program is essential in helping students explore career options; even if students have a general idea of what they want to do after high school. This is partially because a lot of jobs students may have in the future haven’t been created yet. “[Students] don’t know what you’re going to do in the future. Most of your jobs— don’t even exist, so I think that’s a really cool thing,” said Hardin. 

Some students may think this is a program that isn’t worth putting in the effort for, because it is tedious or doesn’t have a grade value attached to it, but Hardin mentions that it all depends on how teachers present it to their students. If teachers believe that it is a valuable tool for students, then it makes it more likely that students will get more out of the experience. 

“That was one of the reasons why we asked staff to do it. We do know that the games are challenging, they are hard… but it’s not measuring how smart you are,” said Hardin. “I think the information in there is super, super beneficial and it’s only going to help young adults achieve the goals that they’ve set for themselves, so that’s why people should do it.”

In the near future, the school plans to indefinitely use the YouScience program to guide Advisory lessons to look at career readiness and it’ll also be used to support project-based learning around the school.