Hall Occupational Orientation Inventory

The Hall Occupational Orientation Inventory (HOOI) is an ambitious undertaking designed to aid career and personal exploration through the self-assessment of needs, values, interests, and abilities. Resembling a psychometric one-stop shop, items cover more dimensions at once than other tools used for similar exploratory purposes.

The HOOI was originally published in 1968 in three forms: an intermediate form primarily for students in Grades 3 to 7, a young adult-college form, and an adult basic form. Based on the doctoral dissertation of its developer, Lacy G. Hall, it is now in its fourth edition. There are three forms commercially available: Form II, which is primarily for junior high school students through adults who are not college bound; a Young Adult-College Form; and an Adult Form. All materials, including the 9-page reusable inventory booklet, onetime self-scoring response sheets, self-interpretive folder, manual, and a supplementary reader, Choosing: Your Way, can be obtained through Scholastic Testing Service, Inc. This entry will address only the Young Adult-College and Adult Forms.

These two forms contain 175 items that are wedged into 35 scales that are crafted into five scale arrays as follows: (1) nine Needs-Values Scales (Creativity-Independence, Information-Knowledge, Belongingness, Security, Aspiration, Esteem, Self-Actualization, Personal Satisfaction, and Routine-Dependence); (2) six Career Interest Scales (People-Social-Accommodating, Data-Information, Things-Physical, People-Business-Influencing, Ideas-Scientific, Aesthetic Arts); (3) eight Job Characteristics Scales (Geographic Location, Abilities, Monetary-Compensation, Workplace, Coworkers, Time, Qualifications, and Risk); (4) six Choice Style Scales (Subjective External Authority, Objective External Authority, Subjective Internal Authority, Shaping-Autonomy-Self Empowerment, Interdependent, and Procrastination); and (5) six Ability Scales with the same labels as the Career Interest Scales.

The 35 scale scores are arrived at by summing Likert-type responses to the items on each scale and placing the totals on a self-interpreted profile sheet in the interpretive folder. This allows for the raw scale scores to be converted into one of three groupings: low, average, or high. Descriptive information regarding the scales is available in the interpretive folder.

The items are rationally constructed with three different Likert formats depending on the scale array. Needs-Values, Career Interest, and Job Characteristics scales use a 5-point format ranging from most desirable to very undesirable. Choice Style uses a somewhat odd 3-point scale with scores of not like me at 1, like me at 2 and very much like me at 3. The Ability scales use a 4-point format ranging from weak at 1 to strong at 4.

In spite of its potential usefulness, the HOOI has not elicited a strong research following because of the lack of any substantive data attesting to the reliability and validity of user scores. Moreover, normative data are lacking and the hand scoring of the large number of scales is tedious and potentially error prone; it is not available for online administration and scoring.

The HOOI does have a following among counselors who note that clients find it simple to use and more comprehensive than other standardized career inventories. The instrument’s questions force self-examination of a variety of occupational and lifestyle issues. Counselors can think of it as an introductory device that might spearhead in-depth counseling.


  • Hall, L. G. (2000). Hall Occupational Orientation Inventory (4th ed.). Bensenville, IL: Scholastic Testing Service.

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