ASSESSMENT

assessmentCurrent economic situation and competitive environment means that employers are no longer satisfied with just face to face interview. Increasingly, candidates are required to take Psychometric test. Here are some useful links that will help you to prepare and put you ahead of others.

SHL Direct – this link will take you to example questions. It will allow you to practice tests and most usefully provide you with instant feedback, and it also provides some helpful assessment advice
Morrisby this site provides some useful general information on psychometrics, FAQs and sample test questions of various types.
Prospects this is a site aimed at new graduates but it does contain useful information about psychometrics and assessment centres which extends beyond graduate recruitment. In the search box type in ‘psychometric tests’ or ‘assessment centres’ and you will be taken to the appropriate pages.

How to – Psychometrics provides tips and advice regarding verbal reasoning, numerical reasoning, spatial reasoning, abstract reasoning, accuracy and personality tests

BPS On this site you will find a pdf download called the ‘Test Takers Guide’ which is written as a detailed Question and Answer document but has no practice questions

www.opp.eu.com publisher of a number of popular tests including the 16PF, ABLE, MBTI and Firo-B.

Saville Consulting test publisher site of the increasingly popular ‘Wave’ personality/motivation product

Books, papers and CDs for Psychometrics and Assessment

You should find most of these books at Amazon, WHSmiths and Waterstones. Your local library may also stock some of them.

  • An extensive book list can also be found at Careers and Testing
  • Prepare for tests at interview – by Robert Williams – this book is available through Amazon.com. ISBN: 0-7005-1601-8
  • The Times Testing Series – TEST YOUR APTITUDE VOLUME 1 – on CD ROM is very good. A copy is available in some of Penna’s offices.
  • BOND ASSESSMENT PAPERS – £5.99 in WHSmith. Go for the Fifth paper for 10-11+ years in Verbal Reasoning
  • NFER-NELSON now GL Assessments– GO PRACTICE! – £7.99 in WHSmith. A number of sets are available in verbal & non-verbal reasoning and maths.
  • How to succeed in Psychometric Tests – by David Cohen this book is available through Amazon.com. ISBN-10: 1847090001
  • How to pass Graduate Recruitment Tests – by Mike Bryon. This book is available through Amazon.com. ISBN-10: 0749409940
  • Management Level Psychometric and Assessment Tests – by Andrea Shavick. This book is available through Amazon.com. ISBN-10: 1845280288
  • How to Succeed at an Assessment Centre” – by Harry Tolley & Robert Wood. This book is available through Amazon.com. ISBN-10: 0749444215

Psychometrics and Assessment Centres – FAQs
answers supplied by Geoff Trickey, Managing Director, Psychological Consultancy Limited.

What are ‘psychometric’ tests?
Evaluation of someone’s ability or personality is normally very subjective. Psychometric tests and questionnaires are designed making the process more objective, consistent and reliable.

Is it possible to ‘fake’ the tests?
Well, you can certainly distort or sabotage test results, but it is very difficult to ‘fake’ tests in a convincing way. Usually they will include a sophisticated mechanism to pick up on inconsistencies and improbable responses.

Is it possible to get better at ability tests?
Practice will always improve performance and this is as true for tests as it is for a golf swing. Many tests include practice items for this reason. However, you obviously cannot perform better than your best.

Can I use a calculator?
For some tests yes, and for others no. Whether or not you can use a calculator will be made clear to you before the test.

Is there a pass mark?
Sometimes, for ability tests, there will be. In other cases you are effectively competing against other applicants, but in either case, other factors should always be taken into account. Selection procedures are rather like a pentathlon, you may do well in some parts and less well in others, but it will be the overall performance that matters.

I have dyslexia, will I be given extra time?
Usually yes, particularly if dyslexia would interfere with the testing process but be irrelevant to the job applied for. If the role places a heavy demand on literacy skills, assessment should aim to estimate the likely influence on future performance. Be sure to flag up any special needs or medical conditions well in advance of the assessment day so that accommodations can be made.

What are employers who run assessment centres looking for?
Assessment centres try to reflect the diversity of the role people are being assessed for and will therefore differ from job to job. They involve a number of different tasks and activities. As you carry out these tasks particular features of your performance will be monitored by assessors.

How can I ensure that I do my best at an assessment centre?
The best approach is to try to settle your nerves and be yourself. As with interviews, you should try to present yourself in the best light possible. If you are a relatively reticent person, you will need to ensure that you don’t hold back when you do have something to say; speak up and make your contribution. On the other hand, very confident people need to ensure that they don’t seem overbearing. Trying to create a false impression may go badly wrong (if not in the Assessment Centre, then in the job itself!).