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05/05/2013

How to pass the next aptitude test.

Increasingly, many Kenyan employers are using aptitude tests in a bid to get the best candidates to fill the job vacancies in their companies. After initially getting CVs and cover letters from prospective job seekers, and whittling down the list to a manageable number, HR recruiters then give an aptitude test to a sizeable number of job seekers before finally subjecting them to an oral interview. Here’s what you need to know about aptitude tests.

1. Aptitude tests gauge skills you acquired over a long time.
While you might conveniently transnight and pass your CATs or exams, even if you didn’t read for the whole semester, aptitude tests are quite different. It is unlikely that you will get anything by transnighting. However, at the very core, aptitude tests measure your quantitative and verbal skills. Some also believe that aptitude
tests measure intelligence, although this is something that is increasingly being disputed. It is unlikely you will find any college or university level questions in an aptitude test.

2. Speed and Accuracy are of the essence.
Most aptitude tests questions are on primary and high school Math and English knowledge. However, the catch is that you will have to be extremely fast in answering the questions. In one of the leading auditing companies in Kenya, you will be given 75 grammar and spelling questions and expected to complete in just ten minutes. So, you should be very fast, while at the same time ensuring that you answer the questions correctly and not just guessing- since most of the questions are multiple choice.

3. Sometimes, marks are deducted of you get the questions wrong.
For some companies, if you get a question wrong, the marks are deducted from the overall mark. This is why accuracy is much, if not more important, than speed. So, you may actually end up with a very low , or even negative marks, if you get more questions wrong than the ones you get right.

In summary, while the exact role of the aptitude test is to gauge intelligence and determine your suitability for a given post, it is increasingly being used as a screening tool, which is why you must give it your best, especially if the other parts of your application are not as outstanding.

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