As part of the recruitment and selection process, some employers use aptitude tests (sometimes referred to psychometric tests). These tests are used to measure specific abilities – common tests often cover numerical, verbal and abstract reasoning.
Some employers use them early on in the process, as an initial stage of recruitment, while others use them later at an assessment centre stage. Many are administered online, and because of this, can be done remotely.
These tests may sound a bit scary, but there’s no need to fear them, as there are things you can do to succeed in them.
Practise makes perfect
Practise as much as possible to familiarise yourself and become more comfortable doing them.
There are lots of free sample questions available online – see below for resources to help you. However, a word of warning – many of the free tests you’ll find are only samples, so they may not be the full length test you’ll face with an employer. Also, the free tests may not be quite to the same standard and difficulty as those used by employers. However, they are still really helpful to use in your preparation, so take advantage of them.
Where to find free examples
First stop is the Profiling for Success suite of tests, hosted on the Careers website’s Psychometric tests page. Click on the link on the right hand side of the page – you’ll need to log on with your University username and follow the instructions to access the tests. These include:
- verbal tests
- numerical tests
- diagrammatic reasoning tests
- a careers inventory to help generate ideas
- a learning styles exercise
- a personality exercise.
Once you’ve done any of the tests, you’ll receive a feedback report, emailed to you, which will help you identify where you did well and which areas need development.
Our How to practise aptitude tests information sheet gives links to lots more free sample tests. Reference books with sample tests are also available in Careers with loan copies in the University library. These books will give you some context to tests and advice and tips on approaching them.
Try out practice tests as soon as you can – you don’t want the first time you face them to be the real thing at a job assessment stage. If you need further information, help or advice about aptitude tests, let us know.