Sitting A Psychometric Test


Many of these points may seem like common sense, you should try to remember -


  1. Get a good night's sleep beforehand.

  2. If you wear glasses or a hearing aid then take them along. If you have any disabilities tell the test administrator about them beforehand.

  3. Eat breakfast. Research shows that skipping breakfast reduces intellectual performance (although it can be difficult to make yourself eat if you are very nervous!).

  4. Test administrators follow a standard set of instructions. Don't be worried if they seem a little rigid or unfriendly - this is what they are supposed to be doing and it helps to ensure that everyone takes the test under exactly the same conditions.

  5. Stay calm - arousal too can decrease intellectual functioning. Try to remember that ability tests usually measure underlying ability rather than overt knowledge. Even though something such as a numerical reasoning test may look very complex, the actual mathematics involved is likely to be very simple - do not be 'blinded by science'.

  6. Reassure yourself that you cannot prepare for a psychometric test in the same way you can for a school examination - traditional revision is likely to be pointless. Although if you have an idea of what type of test to expect, for example, numerical ability, then you might practice writing some test questions yourself and then trying to answer them.

  7. Try to picture what the session will be like. This program provides a close approximation to the three most commonly used ability tests, both in terms of item style and the time allowed to complete them.

  8. Be systematic, try to work out a routine or system for analysing the test items.

  9. Avoid 'skimming' to seek out obvious easy answers. This wastes time.

  10. You will almost certainly be taken through a practice or instructions stage before the test proper. This will give you the chance to try one or two practice items, practice making you answers on the answer sheet, and ask questions of the administrator. Listen carefully to test instructions. Experienced test administrators often see candidates just 'switching off' for one reason or another during the instruction or practice phase and then struggle when it comes to the test itself.

  11. Get the most out of the examples or practice session and do not be afraid to ask questions. If you need a little more time for practice, then ask for it. Although test administrators' instructions will often say something like - "Allow approximately five minutes for candidates to work through the practice examples," they should still take the time to ensure that everyone understands what is expected of them. Although there will come a time when they will simply ask you to begin the test proper.

  12. If you have a certain amount of time to complete the psychometric test, try to work quickly through the questions, but do not despair if you do not finish the test, not all psychometric tests are designed to be finished!

If you know beforehand which type of test you will be taking then you could try writing some test items yourself. This is not as easy as it sounds but is an excellent method of preparation.

You can download your Own Practice Psychometric Test Software (SOLUTIONS and SOLUTIONS ADVANCED), as well as a range of other career guidance tools, from our sister site at