Employment: Advice on Passing Aptitude Tests

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Margaret McGuigan is one of the Province's Careers Officers and works at the East Belfast Job Centre, part of the Department of Employment and Learning. She provides advice and guidance on a range of employment, training and educational issues. She and her colleagues can be contacted online at www.jobcentreonline.com or on Freephone 0800 353530Aptitude Testing for Jobs

Apart from interviewing, there are various ways an employer can test whether you are the most suitable person for the job.

The tests help the employer decide if someone can learn the skills needed to do the job.

For example an employer may ask you to give a presentation at your interview, to sit in a group and discuss problems with other candidates or to simply carry out some kind of practical test.

One increasingly common method used by employers to assess ability is aptitude testing. This type of testing is used to check various skills such as reasoning ability, numerical skills and problem solving.

Aptitude tests are administered under normal examination conditions.

This means that when you are actually taking the test there are no books permitted into the room and there is no talking whilst you are taking the test.

In many cases the test consists of a series of multiple choice questions. In other cases you may be given some kind of case study or problem to analyse and solve.

You are usually given some time to practise typical test questions before you commence the test proper.

This practice time also gives you the opportunity to ask questions if you are unsure about anything before you begin.

How will the test help you?

It will help you find a job for which you are suited.

The tests will have been chosen because the skills they involve are relevant to the job.

The tests are carefully designed so that they are fair to all applicants

Taking tests will help show where your strengths lie. …