Identifying Strengths

Questions to Identify Student Strengths

Laurie A. Schreiner, Ph.D. 

  • Describe your favorite school assignment.
  • What subjects do you enjoy studying the most?
  • What have teachers or professors complimented you on?
  • What do your friends say they like best about you?
  • What fascinates you?
  • Tell me about a time in your life when you accomplished something you were proud of.
  • What can do you for hours on end?
  • If money were no object and you knew you could not fail, what would you love to do?
  • Tell me about a time recently when you were “in the zone” – you were thoroughly enjoying yourself and doing something well.
  • Think about what you are like when you are at your best. What would I see if I were watching you “at your best”?
  • Tell me about a really good day you’ve had recently. What made that such a good day? How did you make that day “good”?
  • Tell me about a challenge you’ve experienced in your life that you have overcome. What did you do to overcome that challenge? How did you do it?
  • What brings out your best? As you think about a time when you did something well, what were the ingredients of that success? What kind of environment and what kind of people tend to bring out the best in you?                          

Schreiner, L. A. (2013). Strengths-based advising. In J. K. Drake, P. Jordan, and M. A. Miller Eds.), Academic advising approaches: Strategies that teach students to make the most of college (pp. 105-120). San Francisco, CA: Jossey Bass.