Practice Aptitude Tests

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What Are The Different Types Of Aptitude Assessments?

These are the most common types of aptitude test that you will encounter:

Numerical reasoning tests

Numerical reasoning tests

These tests require you to answer questions based on statistics, figures and charts.

Verbal reasoning tests

Verbal reasoning tests

A means of assessing your verbal logic and capacity to quickly digest information from passages of text.

Intray exercises

Intray exercises

A business-related scenario that assesses how well you can prioritise tasks.

Diagrammatic tests

Diagrammatic tests

Tests that measure your logical reasoning, usually under strict time conditions.

Situational judgement tests

Situational judgement tests

Psychological tests that assess your judgement in resolving work-based problems.

Inductive reasoning tests

Inductive reasoning tests

Tests that identify how well a candidate can see the underlying logic in patterns, rather than words or numbers.

Cognitive ability tests

Cognitive ability tests

A measurement of general intelligence, covering many categories of aptitude test.

Mechanical reasoning tests

Mechanical reasoning tests

These assess your ability to apply mechanical or engineering principles to problems; they are often used for technical roles.

Watson Glaser tests

Watson Glaser tests

Designed to assess a candidate’s ability to critically consider arguments; often used by law firms.

Abstract reasoning tests

Abstract reasoning tests

Another name for inductive reasoning tests.

Spatial awareness tests

Spatial awareness tests

These tests assess your capacity to mentally manipulate images, and are often used in applications for jobs in design, engineering and architecture.

Error checking tests

Error checking tests

An unusual type of aptitude test that focuses on your ability to identify errors in complex data sets.

How to Prepare for an Aptitude Test

Aptitude tests are designed to be challenging.

To ensure that you do as well as you possibly can, there really is no substitute for practice.

But don’t waste time practicing more than you need to.

Find out exactly what type of aptitude test you will be taking and practice just this type of test.

First use example questions with explained answers to familiarise yourself with the types of questions you will be asked and then take practice tests to improve your performance.

What Are Aptitude Tests Like?

Aptitude tests are typically quite short, often less than 15 minutes long, and are usually completed online.

Tests generally have challenging time limits and often increase in difficulty throughout the test.

This is to put the candidate under pressure and try to understand what their maximum level of performance is.

Typically, tests present the candidate with some information and ask them to use this information to answer a question, usually providing a number of possible answers.

The more questions the candidate answers correctly within the time limit, the better their score will be.

While some aptitude tests will only focus on one type of thinking (either verbal or numerical reasoning, for example) some will have multiple sections that will test various different types of skills.

A multi-part assessment such as that will often take about an hour to complete.

Each section will be roughly 10 to 30 questions, depending on how complex each question is on a particular test.

Basically, if there are more complex questions, the assessment section will have fewer questions.

The position for which the test is being given may also determine the complexity and length of the assessment, i.e., the higher-level the job, the more questions and more complex questions are likely to be asked.

How Are Aptitude Tests Marked?

Aptitude tests are norm referenced.

This means that your performance on the test will be compared to a “norm group.”

A norm group is a group of people with similar characteristics to the candidate, a group of graduate trainees for example.

Your score will be compared to the scores of the people in the norm group, and this will allow the assessor to understand your performance relative to others who are similar to you.

Usually, a candidate’s score is expressed as a percentile.

This, then, tells the assessor what percentage of the norm group their performance surpassed.

If a candidate scored on the 75th percentile, for example, they have performed better than 75 percent of the norm group.

Each particular employer may have a different performance level required for specific positions.

To be successful, the candidate must achieve a level of performance that exceeds a stated minimum.

Candidates will usually not know what the minimum score requirement is before they take an aptitude test.

Why Are Aptitude Tests Used?

Aptitude tests are often used by employers as part of a selection process for a job.

While aptitude tests won’t necessarily test candidates on their ability to perform a specific job within a company, they will give the employer a general sense of how well a candidate can think on their toes and demonstrate critical-thinking skills that would be reflective of the type of thinking they’ll need to do on the job.

Administering aptitude tests allows companies to narrow down the number of candidates who have applied for a job to a more refined group that may be more qualified for the job.

When Are Aptitude Tests Used?

Aptitude tests are most often used before a formal interview and are normally conducted online.

Employers often use the results of the tests in conjunction with how a candidate has performed in an interview to make a final hiring decision.

Combined, the two modes of assessment give employers a clearer picture of a candidate’s ability.

How To Pass Aptitude Tests: Our Top 3 Tips

  1. Familiarize yourself with common types of questions that you will be asked. For example, numerical tests often have questions about percentages. Make sure you know how to work these out before your test!

  2. If you’re taking an aptitude test online make sure you are sitting somewhere quiet where you won’t be disturbed for the duration of the test.

  3. When you are taking tests, work quickly but accurately and ensure you take a few seconds to double check you’ve understood the question and that you’ve actually selected the answer you had in mind.




An aptitude test is a systematic means of testing a job candidate’s abilities to perform specific tasks and react to a range of different situations.
The tests each have a standardised method of administration and scoring, with the results quantified and compared with all other test takers.
No prior knowledge is assumed, as employers seek to determine innate ability at a particular competency.
Aptitude tests are usually taken online or at a testing centre, such as a firm’s offices, where they can be electronic or paper-based.

The secret to not being intimidated by tests?



Test Structure for Aptitude Tests

Tests are timed and are typically multiple choice. It is not uncommon for some available answers to be deliberately misleading, so you must take care as you work through.

Some tests escalate in difficulty as they progress. Typically these tests are not designed to be finished by candidates.


Your score relates your performance to an average group.Your aptitude, ability or intelligence has a relative value to this average result.

An ‘average’ performance is all that is required to pass an aptitude test.

Most employers take people’s backgrounds into consideration for marking.

For example, maths graduates will have an unfair advantage over arts graduates on a numerical test.



Many aptitude tests incorporate negative marking. This means that for every answer you give incorrectly, a mark will be deducted from your total (rather than scoring no mark). If this is the case, you will normally be told beforehand.

In any test that does incorporate negative marking, you must not guess answers, even if you are under extreme time pressure, as you will undo your chances of passing.



Evidence suggests that some practice of similar aptitude tests may improve your performance in the real tests. Practice exam technique and try to become more familiar with the types of test you may face by completing practice questions.

Even basic word and number puzzles may help you become used to the comprehension and arithmetic aspects of some tests.



Treat aptitude tests like an interview: get a good night’s sleep, plan your journey to the test site, and arrive on time and appropriately dressed. Listen to the instructions you are given and follow them precisely.

Before the actual aptitude test, you will almost certainly be given practice examples to try. Make sure you ask questions if anything is unclear at this stage.

You will normally be given some paper on which to make rough workings. Often you can be asked to hand these in with the test, but typically they do not form part of the assessment




You should work quickly and
accurately through the test.

Don’t get stuck on any particular question: should you have any problems, return to it at the end of the test. You should divide your time per question as accurately as you can – typically this will be between 50 and 90 seconds per question.

Remember that the tests are difficult and often you will not he expected to answer all the questions.Be particularly cautious if theaptitude test uses negative marking; if this is not the case, answer as many questions as possible in the time given.

Remember that multiple-choice options are often designed to mislead you, with incorrect choices including common mistakes that candidates make.


These five tips are well worth remembering before you take an aptitude test for real:


Treat the test like you would any other exam.


Work swiftly and accurately through any test.


Work out the maximum time you can spend on any question and stick to it religiously. You can return to questions at the end. Never get stuck on any particular question, even if you think you nearly have it.


If you are going to an assessment centre, take a calculator you understand with you. If you do not, you will be forced to use whatever they might provide you with.


Answer as many questions as possible in the time given. But be wary of negative marking.

Free Practice Aptitude Tests

Numerical Reasoning Practice Test

FREE Numerical Reasoning Practice Test

This Numerical Reasoning Practice Test has 10 questions (and includes answers and full explanations).

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Verbal Reasoning Practice Test

FREE Verbal Reasoning Practice Test

This Verbal Reasoning Practice Test has 10 questions (and includes answers and full explanations).

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Inductive Reasoning Practice Test

FREE Inductive Reasoning Practice Test

This Inductive Reasoning Practice Test has 9 questions (and includes answers and full explanations).

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Abstract Reasoning Practice Test

FREE Abstract Reasoning Practice Test

This Abstract Reasoning Practice Test has 9 questions (and includes answers and full explanations).

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Cognitive Ability Practice Test

FREE Cognitive Ability Practice Test

This Cognitive Ability Practice Test has 10 questions (and includes answers and full explanations).

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Deductive Reasoning Practice Test

FREE Deductive Reasoning Practice Test

This Deductive Reasoning Practice Test has 10 questions (and includes answers and full explanations).

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Logical Reasoning Practice Test

FREE Logical Reasoning Practice Test

This Logical Reasoning Practice Test has 8 questions (and includes answers and full explanations).

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Mechanical Reasoning Practice Test

FREE Mechanical Reasoning Practice Test

This Mechanical Reasoning Practice Test has 10 questions (and includes answers and full explanations).

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Watson Glaser Practice Test

FREE Watson Glaser Practice Test

This Watson Glaser Practice Test has 10 questions (and includes answers and full explanations).

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Situational Judgement Practice Test

FREE Situational Judgement Practice Test

This Situational Judgement Practice Test has 10 questions (and includes answers and full explanations).

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Spatial Reasoning Practice Test

FREE Spatial Reasoning Practice Test

This Spatial Reasoning Practice Test has 10 questions (and includes answers and full explanations).

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SHL Practice Reasoning Test

FREE SHL Practice Reasoning Test

This SHL Practice Reasoning Test has 10 questions (and includes answers and full explanations).

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Diagrammatic Reasoning Test

FREE Diagrammatic Reasoning Test

This Diagrammatic Reasoning Test has 8 questions (and includes answers and full explanations).

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Practice Critical Thinking Test

FREE Practice Critical Thinking Test

This Practice Critical Thinking Test has 3 questions (and includes answers and full explanations).

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This Practice Error Checking Test

FREE This Practice Error Checking Test

This This Practice Error Checking Test has 3 questions (and includes answers and full explanations).

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Practice In-Tray Exercise

FREE Practice In-Tray Exercise

This Practice In-Tray Exercise has 3 questions (and includes answers and full explanations).

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