The Shawnee Mission School District (SMSD) is dedicated to helping all students reach their highest potential and helping them master essential competencies that lead to college and career readiness. One of our challenges lies in helping each student discover their unique set of talents and understanding how those talents connect with their interests and the labor market to drive their college major, career, and life choices.

SMSD, through a generous grant from the Kauffman Foundation, is partnering with YouScience. YouScience is a tool where students in seventh – 12th grade will discover their unique set of talents through the intersection of aptitudes, interests, and personality. It is a completely new way to understand where students will succeed and allows counselors and educators to deliver even more effective and accurate guidance.

Learn more about how the program works and watch video demonstrations at

The program will be administered by instructional coaches, advisory/seminar teachers, and counselors in our middle and high schools. The online, scientific program takes students through a series of assessments and interest questions, which are designed to determine their results in the nine key aptitudes utilized in the working world.

What YouScience Provides Students

  • Aptitude assessments that use engaging exercises rather than self-reported surveys
  • Personalized feedback on natural abilities including self-language, tips, and aptitude descriptions
  • Up-to-date information on approximately 500 careers including job forecasts, education investments, and a personalized FIT profile to specific careers
  • Engaging results interface that guides students to build a comprehensive education & career readiness plan
  • Downloadable reports making it easy to share information with counselors and parents
  • Easy to use self-language to improve college application essays, resumes, interviews and recommendation letters
  • 100% online so that students have access to their profile and the website
  • Continued access to the YouScience Profile for the next 10 years

Based on the science behind YouScience, students will be able to make more informed decisions about college majors and career-related choices. This could translate into a more cost-effective and enjoyable journey through the college years as well as help students make better initial career choices.

FAQs and Resources

What happens if my child joins the school district after November 2020?
Students new to the district will be added to the system each semester.

How are changes in interests and aptitudes gathered between middle and high school?
Moving forward, students will complete this once in middle school, and again in high school, probably 10th grade, as aptitudes tend to solidify around age 15.

Will there be training for parents?
Additional resources will be added including conversation starters and guided results walkthroughs. Check the YouScience website for additional middle school parent resources and high school parent resources.

Does YouScience replace Xello?
No, each platform offers unique benefits and they will be used collaboratively. 

You may direct specific questions to your school’s counseling office.

Click here for additional YouScience FAQs

What is YouScience? Watch this Video

Middle School Results Walkthrough

High School Results Walkthrough