Abstract & Inductive Reasoning SHL Aptitude Tests

Abstract reasoning aptitude tests (also commonly known as inductive reasoning tests) are an increasingly popular form of aptitude assessment produced by companies such as SHL and PSL / Kenexa for companies to use as part of their candidate selection and decision making process. Abstract and inductive reasoning assessments are sometimes referred to as diagrammatic reasoning tests, and while there is some overlap between the two kinds of test there are some differences. They are also often confused with or referred to as logical reasoning tests, which are different and are also known as critical reasoning tests. Abstract and inductive reasoning test questions normally take the form of asking the candidate to assess a sequence of shapes or patterns and provide the next one in the sequence, or analyse the sequence in some way. The questions will be multiple choice, usually with a choice of five possible answers (five possible answers is standard if the test is provided by SHL). If a job applicant is aware that an abstract or inductive psychometric test is part of their chosen companies recruitment workflow, it is important for the candidate to clarify whether the test is an abstract or inductive reasoning test and not a diagrammatic reasoning assessment, which would be similar but the questions would not be exactly the same. As a result claficiation of this issue will allow the candidate the most accurate study and preparation for the online or paper assessment. It is also work checking that it has not also been confused with a logical reasoning test, which is more likely to be about numerical logic or verbal logic rather than images.

How are Abstract / Inductive Aptitude Tests Used?

As mentioned above, abstract or inductive reasoning tests are becoming a more common part of the recruitment process alongside the standard numerical and verbal reasoning assessments as companies (particularly larger companies) believe they are an excellent measure of a candidates intelligence and potential (see more below). As with diagrammatic reasoning tests, job applicants may face abstract reasoning questions in different ways at different potential employers. Some companies will require applicants to take a complete inductive reasoning test, usually in addition to a numerical test and sometimes a verbal reasoning assessment, other companies such as Ernst and Young will require their candidates to take a multi-faceted aptitude test, which uses questions from some or all the major types of reasoning test (numerical, verbal, diagrammatic, abstract and logical). Abstract tests are usually delivered as online aptitude tests (read more here) in the first or second round of candidate selection, though it is not unheard of for them to be given as paper based assessments as part of a company assessment centre or assessment day.

Why Do I Want To Do Well at Abstract / Inductive Reasoning Tests?

Candidates are most likely to have to take and pass an abstract or inductive reasoning test if the position they are applying for is a creative position or requires a large amount of independent problem solving. A job as a programmer, developer or senior I.T. professional would be a stereotypical example of a role which is more likely to have a requirement of passing an abstract reasoning test than some others. They are a good indicator of a person's initiative, and also of their general intelligence level and/or mental potential (though the inductive reasoning test is obviously not the be all and end all to any recruitment process in which it is used). Much like diagrammatic reasoning tests, inductive reasoning comprehension is not something that can be taught to a large degree and thus candidates who do not understand the concepts involved are likely to struggle without practice. Candidates who can perform well in inductive aptitude assessments will likely display most or all of the qualities discribed above. Practice in abstract reasoning tests is important for candidates unfamilar with the concept or who have not sat an abstract reasoning test before as it allows them to gain an understanding of the types of questions likely to be present, so they can focus on providing an answer rather than suffering confusion over what the question is trying to ask them. A good performance in an abstract reasoning test could be an important stepping stone to a desired creative or senior role.

Where Can I Practice Abstract & Inductive Reasoning Aptitude Tests

Currently, the only major supplier of online practice inductive and abstract reasoning tests on the Internet is the Assessment Day website. Assessment Day has a broad range of numerical, verbal and abstract / inductive reasoning tests to help job candidates prepare for the real thing. Getting practice in at these kinds of tests is vital and could make the difference in a candidate getting their ideal job.

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