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Top tips for online tests

Weronika Z Benning4 February 2016

Many of you will be discovering that more and more recruiters are incorporating online testing as part of their recruitment processes.  Commonly used tests include verbal reasoning (understanding logic or patterns with words), numerical reasoning (drawing data from graphs or solving maths problems), situational judgement (aiming to find out about the type of worker you are, and how you would respond in different workplace scenarios), and e-tray exercises (assessing your skills of organisation or prioritisation by using a simulated work email inbox). Whilst these tests will vary from one employer to the next there are a few useful tips that will apply to everyone taking them:

  • Do your research – find out as much as you can about the tests before you sit them. If you feel employers are being a little vague about the content of their tests or the time needed to put aside to do them, then contact them by email or phone to see if you can find out more. Failing that, The Student Room forums can be a really useful resource to hear from other people who have been there and done it.
  • Practice makes perfect – a little practice will help you get used to the type of questions that may come up and the best ways of approaching them. These tests are often strictly pass or fail so they need to be taken seriously. Swotting up on basic maths can be particularly useful if you are sitting numerical tests as this is an area we can all get a bit rusty on!
  • Apply common sense – in the overwhelming majority of cases these tests aren’t set up to trick you. With tests such as situational judgement and e-tray in particular they are merely trying to work out how you would react in corresponding real life work scenarios so think carefully about the best actions to take and how this may impact on others.
  • It’s not a race – the ‘winner’ really isn’t the person who completes all questions first, so give yourself plenty of time to read (and re-read) the question carefully and work at a steady pace, giving yourself the time you need to reach the right answer.

Where to go from here?
There is lots of useful information available through the Help With… section of the UCL Careers website (Interviews and Assessment Centres), including information on how you can use your UCL email address to access subscription-based test materials on the Assessment Day website for free. And don’t forget that Careers Tagged will also hold a plethora of helpful info. Alternatively, you may find the following websites useful, which also give access to free practice tests:

By Hannah Morton Hedges, Careers Consultant/Internships Officer – Arts & Sciences BASc, February 2016

Help preparing for job tests

UCL Careers5 February 2015

UCL Careers has a new subscription to a site you can use to practice and prepare for aptitude tests. These tests are common in graduate recruitment, particularly if you’re applying to large companies or some jobs in the public sector – for example, the Civil Service Fast Stream. You may need to take them online as part of the application process, or at an assessment centre.

If you don’t have much experience with aptitude tests, you can almost certainly improve your scores with practice. You usually have a fairly short time limit when you take the tests, so being familiar with the types of questions you will be asked is important.

Our new subscription package from Assessment Day lets you practice:

  • 2 x Verbal Reasoning tests
  • 2 x Numerical Reasoning tests
  • 1 x Inductive Reasoning tests
  • 1 x Logical Reasoning tests
  • 1 x Diagrammatic Reasoning tests
  • 1 x E-Tray Exercise

These are full length, timed tests similar to those used by companies.

You will receive detailed feedback after you complete the test, including which questions you got right and wrong and how you performed compared to others. You’ll be able to see what the correct answers were for each question, and an explanation of how the answer was worked out. You can download your results or email them to yourself.

There are also PDF versions of tests and answer sheets to download.

You can register here by entering your name and your UCL email address. You’ll receive an email in your UCL email inbox with a password to log in.

You can log back in to Assessment Day to practice again as many times as you want.

If you’re looking for more information and other sites which offer practice tests, please see the resources on our digital library. (You’ll need to log in with your UCL IT username and password).

We also have books to help you prepare for tests in the UCL Careers library. You can use them in our library area at any time we’re open. You can also borrow them for 2 working days for a £10 cash deposit, which you get back if you return the book on time.

– Linsey Chrisman, Information Officer, UCL Careers