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Brain Scans May Help Guide Career Choice 133

Posted by timothy
from the can't-see-past-my-metal-plate dept.
GisG writes "General aptitude tests and specific mental ability tests are important tools for vocational guidance. Researchers are now asking whether performance on such tests is based on differences in brain structure, and if so, can brain scans be helpful in choosing a career? In a first step, researchers writing in the open access journal BMC Research Notes have investigated how well eight tests used in vocational guidance correlate to gray matter in areas throughout the brain." The researcher's (provisional) paper is available as a PDF.
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Brain Scans May Help Guide Career Choice

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  • Asimov's Profession (Score:2, Interesting)

    by freefrag (728150)
    Sounds like the first step towards Asimov's future of being educated by tape, because some people's brain patterns are suited to different professions.
    • by rolfwind (528248) on Thursday July 22, 2010 @02:24PM (#32993530)

      I hope so, America's one size fits all education until college isn't that great imo, many European countries at least section you off by scholastic aptitude after middleschool (don't worry, there are plenty room for latebloomers to achieve).

      Not everyone will become or even wants to be an astronaut and are perfectly happy as a mechanic or something.

      • When I was in grade school there were 3 sections that the kids were split into. Regular kids, slower kids, advanced kids (I forget the exact names now is has been over 30 years). It was not a one size fits all then and it still is not. Maybe NY does things different.

        • I'm also in New York state, so this might still be skewed, but we did that too, with a bit more granularity. There were multiple groups for math, science, and reading, starting as early as first grade.

          There also is a fair amount of differentiation in subject matter as you move up in grade level. We were required to meet certain minimums in the major subjects, but we got to choose how we filled our schedules beyond those. Myself, I added in advanced placement math and science courses, engineering courses,

          • by Urza9814 (883915)

            Same thing in Pennsylvania - We have 4-5 levels of classes (below average, standard, high, advanced) as well as AP classes. Though it also differs by subject. For example, in Math, if you're advanced, you're just taking the same classes as the grade above you. And if you're one of about 10 kids (out of ~200) who are _really_ good, you may be two grade levels ahead. But in English classes, if you're really good you're still pretty much studying the same topic, you just maybe do more of it or go more in-depth

          • In the Northwest every community college has technical degree programs, from agriculture to building maintenance, to automotive mechanics and body work to heavy equipment, carpentry, etc.... Not all cc's have every program, but there are enough cc's and enough programs to give anyone who wants a chance at that kind of degree the opportunity to enter that kind of program.

            I got a degree in Industrial Maintenance Technology in 1980 from a cc and turned it into a 20 year career as an HVAC/R service tech. The

        • by rolfwind (528248)

          When I was in grade school there were 3 sections that the kids were split into. Regular kids, slower kids, advanced kids (I forget the exact names now is has been over 30 years). It was not a one size fits all then and it still is not. Maybe NY does things different.

          That's not the thing I'm talking about. In most American schools I gather, tou have your special need eduaction, votec, advanced section where you take some AP or college classes ahead of others, and the majority of students just kinda amble to

      • by cacba (1831766)

        A less draconian solution is to just make education more personal via computerized lessons.

      • by ebuck (585470)

        I'm glad to hear about this customized education. Now that I've received my results, it is clear that I should have been a telephone switchboard operator.

        Seriously, brains may be more attuned to different tasks, either by genetics, environment, or some combination; but, careers don't really account for those in them. The ideal job might not be the best career due to a number of social issues, like abundance of qualified applicants, advances in technology, work-life balance, social contacts, and ability to

      • by tomhath (637240)

        America's one size fits all education until college isn't that great imo

        What's even worse is the concept of "Mainstreaming". Take kids with major handicaps or behavior problems and mix them in with the rest of the students. It gives liberals a warm fuzzy. But for the one kid it helps, 20 others suffer.

        We spend far too much on students who need remedial work and not near enough on the exceptional students.

      • by mhajicek (1582795)

        Not everyone will become or even wants to be an astronaut and are perfectly happy as a mechanic or something.

        While I agree with your main point, I would like to mention that there are many adept programmers who would never make it as a mechanic. Mechanics are necessary in our society, as are many other professions requiring mechanical aptitude. It irks me that people seem to have an attitude that people that actually move atoms around in the real world are the bottom feeders of society, who only do it because they're not good enough to push paper or flip bits. When it comes down to it though, it's moving atoms

      • by kklein (900361) on Friday July 23, 2010 @12:01AM (#32999618)

        I'm a prof who has worked in both the US and Japanese education systems (Japan longer). As such, I've thought a lot about this.

        The problem with your idea is right there in your last line, even though you didn't mean it to be:

        Not everyone will become or even wants to be an astronaut and are perfectly happy as a mechanic or something.

        The implication is that the former is a "higher" profession than the latter. Now, it is much harder to be qualified for, and therefore worth more money, but there's nothing low about being "a mechanic or something." In fact, if you find a good mechanic--someone who is good at understanding highly complex systems and who has the experience necessary to quickly diagnose problems in those dizzyingly complex systems--you pay through the nose for him, and are happy to do it. He probably still doesn't make that much, though.

        This is because we have something wrong with our (US) culture. We don't seem to understand the concept of middle class. We don't seem to understand that the vast majority of people are basically as smart as everyone else, regardless of education level. We also don't want to pay for basic services, so those people have to compete for cheaper and cheaper prices. It also means that we get what we pay for.

        I had a German hair stylist in the US for awhile. I loved her to death. She wasn't much for "chairside manners" (she was curt and pushy, without meaning to offend), but she was unbelievable. She could make anyone's hair do anything, and got most of her clientele through her ability to look at totally perm-or-color-ravaged hair, and fix it. I started asking how she did it. She said, "American stylists are terrible. They study for 6 months and wonder why they can't do anything right. I have a four-year degree." "A four-year degree to cut hair?" "Yes, but also coloring. We have to study organic chemistry for that and pass tests on diagnosing problems and coming up with solutions on different kinds of hair. The races have different hair, you see. What I'd use on an Asian wouldn't be what I used on you, for example."

        Germany made a choice that vocations were still really important. And they are. But we don't see that in the US.

        Japan is not as hardcore about this as Germany, but it still trains people much longer for vocations than we do in the US. Prices are higher, but so is quality, and so is the mode standard of living. I don't mind paying more to have my car fixed if I know that that guy's kids can go to college if they want, because he's very comfortably in middle class.

        Our over-emphasis on the individual in the US hurts us in many, many ways. We idolize the rich and blame poor individuals for not working hard enough or something. We impose a moral hierarchy on the socioeconomic structure, and it is killing us. A large middle class means political and economic stability, lower crime, higher standard of living, longer lifespan... Everything great about Japan, I think, is due to their commitment to taking care of and respecting everyone (of course there are exceptions--nowhere is perfect). In a very real sense, the US's obsession with superstars, captains of industry, and themselves as individuals, I think, is the reason that We Can't Have Nice Things.

    • Of course he still had to beg to be in griffendor

      • by bsDaemon (87307)

        what the hell does Harry Potter have to do with Isaac Asimov?

        • what the hell does Harry Potter have to do with Isaac Asimov?

          What, you never read Asimov's Daneel Olivaw and the Order of the Positron? Ties together the Robots series, the Foundation series, three previously independent works, the Harry Potter series, two chemistry textbooks, a shopping list Isaac once wrote when Janet was away visiting family, the service manual for a '72 Dodge Dart, and six incomprehensible Harlan Ellison rants yet to be written.

    • It's also like the not so distant past where you take aptitude tests to see what you're good at and then select from those the field you like best (or hate least). Lots of countries used to do that, either as a recommendation or as a requirement. The requirements can be physical (e.g. you can't teach 7 foot [anvari.org] or mental (ignorance is curable, stupid is forever) or both.

      • by holmstar (1388267)
        I took a career aptitude test in middle school. The results came back and the list of possibilities was several pages long. I can't say that it was very helpful in making a decision.
        • I took a career aptitude test in middle school. The results came back and the list of possibilities was several pages long. I can't say that it was very helpful in making a decision.

          Those kind are generally not useful. They're not very comprehensive and given way too early. At that age it is possible to steer towards a general track of interest, natural science science, math, humanities, vocational skills. Comprehensive tests take at least half a day and contain all kinds of weird stuff to identify general aptitudes, not specific interests.

  • ERROR (Score:3, Funny)

    by DWMorse (1816016) on Thursday July 22, 2010 @02:17PM (#32993430) Homepage
    Blonde Detected. Recommending Cosmetics Retail.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by MalHavoc (590724)
      I'd mod you insightful if I had points. Shades of Gattaca here, I think. I wonder if these tests will be treated like regular medical tests and somehow protected under a doctor/patient confidentiality agreement. Envision a future where employers ask you to get a brain scan to see if you're going to be good at the job you've just applied for? Might happen. Compare that to taking a test during an interview, possibly with a brain that may not score well on a scan, but may have re-wired itself to use other
      • That doesn't work. The test would just show how predisposed to a certain skilset you are. If I spend 4 years getting a comp sci degree, have coop terms all with glowing reviews and a portfolio of projects I've done why would they care what my brain looks like? I have clear evidence that I can do the job.

        It's like saying that because we have aptitude tests employers might start making all employees take them to see whether they can be hired. It doesn't happen.
        • Maybe there is an applicant with an equivalent resume, but a better brain scan?

          And as for aptitude tests, that's more common than you think.

          • If there's a tie then there has to be an unfair tiebreaker. These days it's usually whoever the HR guys likes more. Making it based on a brain scan is as valid (if not moreso) a method as based on who the HR guy personally relates to more readily.

            My point is that calling "Gattaca" on this is a bit like calling "hitler" on Obama for advocating universal healthcare or on Bush for being generally more republican than one might like.
    • Re:ERROR (Score:4, Funny)

      by mcgrew (92797) * on Thursday July 22, 2010 @03:25PM (#32994488) Homepage Journal

      How can you tell if a blonde's been using your computer?

      There's whiteout on the screen.

      (Yes, this is an old joke the kids won't understand)

    • by wagadog (545179)

      Actually, if I were "Blonde [sic]" I'd prefer a brain scan than people just assuming I was stupid and making stupid career recommendations based on their stupid assumptions.

  • Ignorance is curable ... stupid is forever.
  • by CannonballHead (842625) on Thursday July 22, 2010 @02:21PM (#32993482)

    Aptitude tests and mental ability tests are helpful in choosing vocation? Really?

    Maybe I'm just weird, but I did not take any aptitude nor ability tests to pick my vocation. I studied what interested me. Typically, things that interested me were things that I could actually do - I didn't have much of an interest in things I couldn't do...

    Do people actually choose their vocation (and included in that, I assume, would be education choices) based on what tests appear to show they are "good" at rather than what actually interests them - and what they have found out they can do by actually TRYING it?

    • by CastrTroy (595695) on Thursday July 22, 2010 @02:40PM (#32993772) Homepage
      When I was in university, it seemed the top 2 reason for choosing a course of study were:

      1) High paying job upon graduation.
      2) Parents pushed me into it.

      Now, often reason 2 is because of reason 1, but at the end of the day, many people choose paths in school/life that will end up with a high paying job, rather than choose something they love. My roommate actually specifically stated that he went into mechanical engineering, specifically because he didn't want what he really liked (computers) to turn into a job. So he ended up doing something he didn't like at all (didn't graduate, because he hated the work), over something he liked, even though both courses of study would have resulted in the same amount of pay. I choose my course based on what I like to do (software engineering), and it paid off pretty well, especially when I compare myself to all the other people I know who choose their future based on money, or what their parents told them to do.
      • His response seems perfectly reasonable to me. It just sounds like he just made a poor choice for his field of study. Like you said, probably because of pressure from elsewhere. It doesn't mean his original logic was bad.

        I love working with computers and technology, but if computers became my job, it would ruin my hobby. I would hate having to do support and programming for me would stop being interesting if I could only work on things other people wanted me to work on. Strangely enough, I'm also mecha

      • by eln (21727) on Thursday July 22, 2010 @03:12PM (#32994282) Homepage
        People don't make career choices based on their passions because people have to eat. Sure it would be great if we could all follow our passions, but in practice the only people who can do that either have a passion for something that happens to pay really well or have giant trust funds from their rich parents. The rest of us have to go into whatever seems the least soul-crushing that will still pay the bills.

        Your passion was software engineering which lucky for you happens to pay a lot. If your passion was playing the guitar or surfing, or even social work or teaching, your chances of making enough money to feed yourself, much less raise a family, following your dreams would be far lower.

        It's also worth noting that passions change over time. Growing up my passion was computers, and it just so happened that I entered the work force right when the Internet was starting to take off so my passion was something I could get paid a lot of money to do. Now, though, while I still enjoy working with computers I wouldn't say I'm particularly passionate about it. I have other things I like to do, but none of them are going to pay the mortgage, so I keep working with computers.

        I hear people say everyone should follow their dreams and I just want to smack them. Yes, spend some time in your early 20s following your dreams and seeing if you can make them work, but always have a backup plan. If you want to study music or underwater basket-weaving or whatever you love to do, fine, knock yourself out...but make sure you double major in something with more stable job prospects even if it doesn't get your heart racing thinking about doing it for the rest of your life. Then, if your passions don't end up being enough to live on you can go to your job that you're not passionate about all day and then go do whatever you're passionate about on the weekends like most people do.
      • by tehcyder (746570)

        My roommate actually specifically stated that he went into mechanical engineering, specifically because he didn't want what he really liked (computers) to turn into a job.

        He should have chosen law or finance or something then. Engineering degrees are hard enough work even for people who enjoy it/are good at it. And if you don't enjoy the degree you're certainly not going to want to do it as a career.

    • Although I got my first PC at age 9, and had my first BASIC class in 7th grade, I never saw computers as a career choice. Programmers were still perceived as 1980s movie nerds in '90 when I graduated.

      So I studied Architecture and Design, when I found out how miserable the job prospects were, I drifted for a while.

      While drifting I worked a lot of crappy jobs, and bought a crappy Compudyne computer from CompUSA, which I returned 3 times for repairs and finally a refund. With the refund money a friend of mine

    • by bsDaemon (87307)

      Isn't there generally assumed to be difference between "vocation" and what one studies in university? Maybe that's less true for something such as engineering, where you're not exactly going to be very far from the shop floor for most of your career (so to speak) than it is for, say, someone who majors in accounting or history, but still. I consider automechanics to be a "vocation" where as automotive engineering, not so much. One is a vocation, the other a profession.

      In my case, I was a computer nerd i

      • I'm a mechanical engineer, myself. True, vocation and university education are not the same. It's also true that, with engineering, you need to know how to do the basics so you can apply abstract ideas and theory to the real world. Anyway, while we were required to learn how to do all the vocational-ish stuff, we weren't required to gain true proficiency in welding, machining, etc, just competency. Many of us learned above and beyond that, but it wasn't required. (I was actually a fairly good machinist

    • I studied what interested me. Typically, things that interested me were things that I could actually do - I didn't have much of an interest in things I couldn't do

      Well now, that's where you're weird. You could do any number of things. You could study history, you could program computers, you could become a carpenter. All 3 of these require completely different skillsets and there is no real reason why anyone with the sufficient resources couldn't do any of these.

      So knowing "What you can do" does not help vocation. Which you could extend to say Aptitude tests and mental ability tests are not helpful in choosing a career someone might enjoy.

      However - enjoyment and what

      • You misunderstood, or I was unclear. I did not mean that I could not do things that did not interest me; what I said was that things that interested me were things I could do. Just because A is in set B does not mean B ONLY consists of set A. :)

        As for enjoyment ... no, they may not always line up, I understand that. And to be fair, my current vocation, while in a field I did study - computers - was not in my primary field of study (I was a double major) - music. Music, at the moment, is a hobby/amateur

    • For some people they can be helpful.

      A friend of mine is pretty good at pretty much everything she tried her hand at, but was having trouble finding something that really grabbed her. She went to a kind of career counselor for adults, ran through a battery of aptitude tests etc., and got a list of career suggestions. 90% of them were things she had thought of or tried before, but the remaining items were all new to her - she just hadn't ever thought of them as possible career choices. Fast-forward 8 years an

      • by Quirkz (1206400)
        Yeah, I would have actually appreciated a little more guidance when I was younger. I was moderately good at most subjects, and simply didn't know how to figure out what sort of jobs I might enjoy--which is definitely sometimes a bit removed from the subjects you can choose to study. Even at a college that encouraged diversity in education, I couldn't sample all the subjects, and again those aren't necessarily like the jobs you'll do later. I picked physics because it sounded challenging (and it was, but I d
    • Do people actually choose their vocation (and included in that, I assume, would be education choices) based on what tests appear to show they are "good" at rather than what actually interests them - and what they have found out they can do by actually TRYING it?

      Maybe some do. I sure didn't. As a kid, I loved science, and I wanted to be an astronaut. I also mucked about with BASIC on our IBM PC a *lot*. Now I'm a software engineer because it's something I've always done, always enjoyed, and pays well.

      • Maybe some do. I sure didn't. As a kid, I loved science, and I wanted to be an astronaut. I also mucked about with BASIC on our IBM PC a *lot*. Now I'm a software engineer because it's something I've always done, always enjoyed, and pays well. I also play various types of guitar and do martial arts - the first two reasons apply to those as well. My university had a computerised aptitude test that told me I should be a museum curator - essentially a bureaucrat.

        Exactly. No, you did not go into what you "really really wanted to do" or "dreamed about" but you didn't end up doing - or trying to do - something that you actually did not like or had no interest in. You were interested in some stuff that software engineers do, and you ended up doing it ... even though you apparently also enjoy music and physical activity.

        I think I'm pretty similar, in that I still do things I enjoy but did not major in nor get a job in... but what I did major in and what I did get a jo

  • Conclusions (Score:1, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward
    From the linked article, not the pdf, "Our current results form a basis to investigate this further."

    Sounds like they know the fundamental purpose of all research.
  • WARNING (Score:3, Funny)

    by Reilaos (1544173) on Thursday July 22, 2010 @02:26PM (#32993564) Homepage

    "Oh god! This one's too smart! He'll see through our liberal conspiracy!"

    "Quick, recommend his name to the Government Death Panel/Healthcare Board! And remove his access to tin foil!"

    • by Yvan256 (722131)

      There was a twilight zone (or some other series) episode where children had to pass an IQ test and were injected with truth serum before the test. The ones that tested with an IQ above the national limit were simply killed.

      • by Reilaos (1544173)

        I remember reading a story which went exactly like that. They were all "I'm sorry, he scored too high."

        It was the inspiration for the comment. :3

        • I read that short story as well. I think it was called "Sanity Claus"
        • by Chris Burke (6130)

          I remember reading a story which went exactly like that. They were all "I'm sorry, he scored too high."

          The Twilight Zone was probably ripped straight from the book (or was simply an adaptation). They said the same thing. The parents, who at the beginning had told their son it was important to do his best, took the news basically like they'd been told their son had died on the operating table -- a tragedy they just had to accept. Indicating that the program was working. :)

    • by slick7 (1703596)

      "Oh god! This one's too smart! He'll see through our liberal conspiracy!"

      "Quick, recommend his name to the Government Death Panel/Healthcare Board! And remove his access to tin foil!"

      I guess the shit for brains knuckle-heads can go directly to Congress or the Senate and the terminally incompetent can go to the IRS and the Federal Reserve.

  • Obligatory (Score:5, Funny)

    by networkzombie (921324) on Thursday July 22, 2010 @02:27PM (#32993574)
    Yay! I'm a delivery boy!
  • by H0p313ss (811249) on Thursday July 22, 2010 @02:29PM (#32993606)

    "Alpha children wear grey. They work much harder than we do, because they're so frightfully clever. I'm awfully glad I'm a Beta, because I don't work so hard. And then we are much better than the Gammas and Deltas. Gammas are stupid. They all wear green, and Delta children wear khaki. Oh no, I don't want to play with Delta children. And Epsilons are still worse. They're too stupid to be able to read or write. Besides they wear black, which is such a beastly color. I'm so glad I'm a Beta."

    - Aldous Huxley [wikipedia.org], Brave New World [wikipedia.org], Ch. 2 (quotes [about.com])

  • According to the latest in physiognomical science, you are perfectly suited for the occupation of:

    Maintenance Technician

    "Dad? It's Jimmy. Can you help me pay back those med school loans?"
  • What exactly are they talking about? I've never heard of anyone taking such a test to choose their career in the US, with the exception of the SAT to determine college suitability.

    Thus I must disagree with the premise of their importance.

  • Hmm... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Thursday July 22, 2010 @02:34PM (#32993714) Journal
    Correlating brain scans with questionnaires is cute and all, and has the advantage of being relatively quick; but suffers from the major disadvantage of being(at best) able to duplicate the accuracy of an existing(cheap, paper-based) test.

    Obviously, progress is frequently made up of steps that don't make much sense on their own, since they don't yet improve on the status quo; but something as pricey as brain imaging is completely pointless unless it can exceed the performance of paper, not just correlate with it.
    • by venril (905197)

      but something as pricey as brain imaging is completely pointless unless it can exceed the performance of paper, not just correlate with it.

      Of course, it's not pointless if it garners him a research grant.

      The world is full of 'scientists', eager find interesting things that make no economic sense, on someone elses buck/pound.

  • Scary future-tech (Score:3, Insightful)

    by HeckRuler (1369601) on Thursday July 22, 2010 @02:47PM (#32993878)
    I don't really have an issue with MRIs helping guide career descisions. Well, other then the fact that this sounds like it can be done with the bullshit career planning pamphlets from highschool. I mean, did I really need to answer twenty questions to know that I'm better at math then average joe?

    But what's scary is if this is ever applied to children who haven't yet developed. I dunno much about child development, but if you're not a math genius by age 11, you're too old to really make it into the big league. The problem is how a kid develops if you tell them that they're stupid and they might as well break rocks with their noggin. I think the trick to encouraging engineering degrees is to trick children into thinking they're smart. Given a decade in the school system, it'll turn out to be true.
    It's also scary if it's used as a screening method for prospective employees.
    • by Hatta (162192)

      I don't really have an issue with MRIs helping guide career descisions.

      If anything, it will help dead salmon [wired.com] decide what they do when they get out of school.

    • I still think after a certain point persistence and hardwork matter more then raw potential. A genius that doesn't apply himself will won't get very far.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ak5Lr3qkW0 [youtube.com]

      He likes to toot his own horn about his own IQ but if you look at how he lived his life, he hasn't really applied himself. Also the excuse he comes up with for what he didn't do seems like a cop out.

      If you look at most great and accomplished people, they were truly absorbed in what they did and many were work-a-ho

    • by tehcyder (746570)

      if you're not a math genius by age 11, you're too old to really make it into the big league

      The big league of maths professors, maybe, but it hardly precludes you from becoming a doctor, engineer, actuary or whatever.

      • I was thinking above math professors really. Like, oh I don't know, Euler or Gauss. But looking through a list, there are plenty of counter-examples, like Anon who pointed out Lagrange.

        Most doctors don't need math at all. And I can't remember the last time I actually had to apply some calculus. I mean, I tackled an 11yo cousin and forced him to learn about limits and how to derive polynomials, but actually using it on the job? Naw.
  • What happens when the sensors break? The lack of readings will send every test subject straight to PHB school.

  • Improving on Zero (Score:5, Interesting)

    by dorpus (636554) on Thursday July 22, 2010 @03:01PM (#32994130)

    I took a career aptitude test in the early 90s, and it told me my aptitudes were pretty much exactly in the center between various career fields. In a word, it was worthless.

    Many people in the 90s were also eager to recommend "What Color Is Your Parachute?" They ask a lot of simplistic questions like "Are you a people person? yes or no." It was worthless also. I've met multiple college career counselors also, and none of them had the slightest clue what they were talking about.

    Do any of these aptitude models take into account that interests shift over time? We are not insects that are hard-wired to do particular tasks. My career has taken me through various nooks and crannies ranging from radio station support staff, law enforcement, jet engine factories, to hospital transplant centers, and presently I am getting a PhD in a statistics.

  • I've wondered for a while how exactly people generally measure their "IQ". Whenever I see this statistic pointed out, I do some google searches about the matter but never really get any further than sites that let you take some test then hold the results hostage. I read an article (maybe wikipedia) saying how when Stephen Hawking first noticed his illness, he immediately was worried it would affect his IQ and took a test to confirm if there were any effects. Is anyone aware of a legitimate place for testing
  • by peter303 (12292) on Thursday July 22, 2010 @03:11PM (#32994274)
    He invented phrenology [wikipedia.org], the science of deducing aptitude from skull shape. Phrenology has been modernized by technology, but not verified. Franz could only use the primitive version of skull shape.
    • Phrenology was not a science. Giving something a greek name does not make it a science.

      • by H0p313ss (811249)

        Phrenology was not a science. Giving something a greek name does not make it a science.

        Hopefully that's what peter303 was ironically alluding to...

  • Are you sure of your choice? They could help you achieve greatness.... in that case, better make it GRIFFINDOR!
  • Aptitude (Score:4, Insightful)

    by oldmac31310 (1845668) on Thursday July 22, 2010 @03:13PM (#32994292) Homepage

    But what if you really enjoy certain activities even though they are things that you are not necessarily best suited to according to the scan?

    It takes more than aptitude to be good at something. How do you measure ambition, drive, passion, dedication, work ethic, etc.?

  • Two chicks at the same time. I wonder if my brain scan would point me in that direction.

    I like people who do it the old fashioned way. Take entertainers. We don't need a test to tell them whether or not they should be doing that. That takes the fun out of it.

    "It should be the traditional route. Years of rejection and failure until she's spit out the bottom of the porn industry." -Seinfeld
  • "Profession" by Isaac Asimov [abelard.org]

    It's a story about a society in which you're assigned jobs based on the structure of your brain, and how it can be 'educated'. It's a good story, with the moral being on free thought and being able to learn and innovate.

    It's also quite relevant to the article.
  • "Hmm let's see, poorly-formed social lobe, no athletic ability, sensitive to sunlight.......programmer. Next?"

  • If you think brain scans can help guide your career choice, doing brain imaging as a neuroscientist is not likely to be one of your more viable options.

  • ... on the malign hypercognition disorder scale. What sort of job would suit me?
    • by tehcyder (746570)
      As it's an imaginary condition, I would imagine teenage paranoid numpty.
      • by PPH (736903)

        Cool! Its been decades since I qualified as a teenage anything. I think I could tolerate a second chance at hitting on all the high school babes.

  • by mahadiga (1346169)

    Can we demand brain scans of politicians?

  • Great!! this is gonna have a long term good impact on the education system. http://www.wellnessstarts.com/vierect-penis-enlargement-reviews.html [wellnessstarts.com]
  • "Well, the results indicate you would have been an accoplished musician... before the brain scan. Here's your drool bucket."
  • GATTACA, here we come.

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