Try not to sound too excited at the thought of another test. We know… you probably feel completely tested out at this point in your life, but hear us out. An aptitude test is actually a little bit more interesting than regular certification or licensing exams, both of which can just require that you retain a lot of information. Aptitude tests help to determine how you respond to challenges. Aren’t you the least bit interested in knowing yourself a little bit better? It might even be “cool” to know your logical reasoning or thinking performance abilities. So, bear with us while we bring you up to date with Aptitude Tests and some Aptitude Test questions. There is no harm in giving your brain a little workout to learn how to make it work better!
What Are Aptitude Tests?
Let us fill you in a little bit more on aptitude tests. Although they may not be as talked about as other achievement tests, aptitude tests actually covers a more broader area. Aptitude tests cover a wide range of experiences that you may have dealt with in recent years to test your mental capabilities. Here are some categories that you can expect for an aptitude test to cover:
- Numeric Reasoning
- Verbal Reasoning
- Spatial Reasoning
- Abstract Reasoning
- Mechanical Reasoning
- Data Checking
- Work Sampling
- Fault Diagnosing
Knowing these categories will help you know what to study for or go over before your test, which we will get into later.
Who Gives Aptitude Tests?
Wondering where you would ever take one of these tests? A good answer is: when you are in line for a job. Aptitude tests are generally administered to test your work-related capabilities. Recruitment companies have a large number of job applicants, and their goal is to narrow down the playing field. Unfortunately, interviewing hundreds of applicants will not be cost-efficient for a company, and aptitude tests are an easy way to help companies filter out the right individuals that they want to get to know better.
Schools can also use aptitude tests to test their student’s knowledge of certain categories and fields. These tests used for education purposes can include the: SAT (Scholastic Assessment Test), ACT (American College Testing Exam), and the DAT (Differential Aptitude Test). However, there is always some controversy regarding how much of these tests test an individual’s aptitude or achievement.
What Will Aptitude Tests Show?
Here are a few examples of what your results will be able to indicate:
- They will show how you have and will continue to perform scholastically.
- They compare your performance with the performance of others in the same situation.
- They demonstrate your strengths and weaknesses in dealing with certain questions.
- They help show how you respond to challenges and how time efficient you can be.
Let’s look over the various types of questions that you can expect to come across on an aptitude test:
- Numeric Reasoning: This will test your numeric ability. You will come across questions that include: basic arithmetic, integers, sequences of numbers, and other types of simple mathematics. If you are taking an aptitude test for a certain job, your test may include certain charts and graphs that you will need to be able to read, analyze, and interpret. Additionally, even if your potential job does not deal with many numbers of math, employers still want to know that you can think, assess, and interpret situations where numbers are involved.
- Verbal Reasoning: Unfortunately, even if they had proper schooling, not everyone has verbal ability that is up to par with what a company might expect. Just because you can carry a conversation does not mean that you mean communicate well in other ways. The verbal portion of an aptitude test will test what you know about spelling, grammar, and general analogies. This will give employers an idea of how you can potentially communicate in writing as well as speaking, which are essentially qualities to carry on at any job.
- Abstract Reasoning: Often times, jobs are going to require you to think abstracting whether you are planning or coming up with ideas that have not yet been put into existence. An aptitude tests will show employers that you have the ability to form some logic from a pattern and come up with a solution from your evidence. This is a great way for others to test your ability to think quickly and pick up new ideas that may be thrown out randomly or unexpectedly. Employers look highly upon people who can conform and adapt easily no matter what the situation.
- Spatial Reasoning: This measures your spatial ability. These types of questions will generally appear in the math form of an aptitude test, where you are required to use your brain power to think and assess objects in two or three dimensions. If your job calls for it, you will need to know how to deal with problems that involve physical shapes.
- Mechanical Reasoning: Depending on where or for whom you are taking an aptitude test for, you may or may not come across these questions. Mechanical reasoning questions are designed to test your knowledge of physical and mechanical principals. These are generally used in military, engineering, or other technical jobs.
- Data Checking: Almost every job deals with a certain amount of data or information. At the end of the day, it does not always matter how fast you can enter or analyze the data, but how accurately you go about doing so. Data checking questions on an aptitude test are there to quantify both how fast and accurately you are able to perform with data. This is very useful for data entry positions, for example.
- Work Samples: This can be a very concrete way to show your skills to an employer. In an aptitude test, a work sample will incorporate an exercise that can be easily done on a word processor or a spreadsheet. If the job you are going for involves a management or higher level position, you may be asked to give a presentation or showcase your skills as well.
- Fault Diagnosing: No, this has nothing to do with earthquakes, but it does involve finding ways and solutions to repair problems. For specific positions, you will need to be able to demonstrate that you know what needs to be done to repair certain electronic or mechanical systems. You will need to demonstrate that you can think about the problem logically before determining the method of solution.
Some Sample Questions
Depending on who, why, and what you are taking an aptitude test for, your questions will vary. However, here are a few examples to get you in the right mindset.
- Example (Numerical Reasoning): What is the missing number?
1 4 ? 16 25
- Example (Verbal Reasoning- Synonyms and Antonyms): Find the synonym or antonym of the word EASY.
A) Difficult B) Open C) Soft
Answer: A) Difficult
- Example (Work Sample): Provide a work sample for your potential job as a Public Relations Specialist:
Answer: Provide copies of press work, articles, and marketing plans or examples that will generate results for a company in terms of revenue and promotions.
Some Helpful Tips
Now that you have some insight squared away for you exam, here are some helpful tips to keep in handy to prepare you for your test day.
- Practice: This might seem like an obvious one, but the key to succeeding for any test or exam is to practice, practice, and practice some more. Check out some online sites for some free sample exams.
- Supplies: Make sure you have all the supplies you need for test day, and practice with them so they are not foreign to you on the day of. For example: a good working calculator, scratch paper, pens, and a watch or stopwatch.
- Time: Know the general amount of time you are going to be expected to have for your exam. Feel free to call the test taking site and ask for any additional information on questions you might have.
- Instructions: When taking your test, make sure that you read the instructions before you dive into your questions. Misreading or misinterpreting a section will likely set you back a great deal of points.
- Time Management: Aptitude tests are timed, so try not to waste too much time on a single question. Simply go back to it at the end of the test. Do what you know first , and typically aim to spend between 50 and 90 seconds per question.
Put on Your Thinking Caps!
As with any test, treat it like a test, but do not treat it like the end of the world: it will not make or break you. If you ever have any questions about the test, remember to ask. Also, do not assume that because you did well in a certain subject in school that you will do well without preparation on an aptitude test. Preparation is key! For any of your preparation needs, check out some of these test taking strategy courses that Udemy has prepared to help you get ready for your big test day!