Psychometric tests

Many graduate employers use psychometric tests as part of their recruitment process. These tests come in several forms but can be divided into two main types: aptitude and personality.

Aptitude tests aim to test your mental and intellectual ability and assess how logical and analytical your thought processes are when solving complex problems. They usually consist of verbal, numerical and diagrammatic tests in multiple choice format and are usually subject to a fixed time limit.

Personality tests are more like a questionnaire than a test and are designed to create a profile of your personal qualities and characteristics, such as your ability to lead and motive others, how reliable and honest you are and what motivates you. Since there are no right or wrong answers, the best advice is just to be yourself and choose the answer that feels ‘right’ to you.

Online practice tests and related resources

Getting used to the style of tests and the type of questions asked is important, and it is a good idea to practise psychometric tests before doing the real thing. The sites below all offer a variety of free resources:

SHL – practice tests of varying kinds (verbal, numerical and spatial reasoning, inductive and deductive judgement, etc), plus broader advice on assessments. SHL (formerly known as Saville and Holdsworth) are long-established in this sector.

Assessment Day

Numerical Reasoning Test and Verbal Reasoning Test - some free samples developed by consultants who have previously worked for SHL and Kenexa

Cubiks

Practice Aptitude Tests

Criterion Partnership – sample tests and advice for those taking tests

Practice Psychometric Tests.com

Dr Mark Parkinson’s useful list of psychometric tests and questionnaires available on the web, most of which are also free of charge

Keirsey Temperament Sorter - useful personality test, based on the Myers Briggs Type Indicator

PwC – guidance on what happens at tests, and how assessments are used in the PwC recruitment process

FAQs for test-takers, put together by Realise Potential

Tips on psychometric tests, put together by the University of Liverpool’s Centre for Lifelong Learning. Contains links to additional resources.

Practice in-tray exercises from the Civil Service Fast Stream and Deloitte.  

Other ways to get help

  • Borrow one of our books on psychometric testing from the LUMS Careers Team office (A127)
  • Visit a drop in clinic in the LUMS Careers zone (A112)
  • Visit the main University Careers Service

For further information please contact Kat Price Edwards (undergraduate careers adviser), or Peter Sewell (postgraduate careers adviser).