Verbal reasoning test

Verbal Reasoning Tests are measure scales by which employers determine your level of comprehension of text information.

Introduction to Verbal Reasoning Tests

A verbal reasoning test is a type of aptitude test that is designed to determine your ability and the level of your dexterity to comprehend, analyze, and make logical conclusions from a given text.

Many people are often of the misconception that verbal reasoning tests are purely language-based. In reality, the test focuses on how well you comprehend verbal passages, logic, and reason based on them with the help of your language grasp and understanding.

In a verbal reasoning test, you generally have to read a given text passage and analyze the question presented in the form of statements relative to the passage. It would help if you then answered by verifying whether the given statement is:    

  • True - the given text passage provides information directly or logically confirming the statement.
  • False - the statement contradicts the information given in the passage.
  • Cannot Say - it is impossible to give a certain answer as more information is needed.

One highlight of the test is that you must solely adhere to the information the passage provides you. You cannot use the information you already possess based on real-life experiences.

The Use of Verbal Reasoning Test in Recruitment

Verbal Reasoning Tests are commonly used in the recruiting process these days. For any job field, the key requirements are to be able to understand the correct meaning of a set of complex and often lengthy information. If one lacks in this particular aspect, there are very slim chances of succeeding in any career.

To successfully pass this type of test, you must strengthen your ability to differentiate between inferences and facts since that is what the verbal reasoning test primarily checks. Along with this practice, you must also refine your logic and comprehension skills.

At the same time, it is also necessary to be able to filter out and comprehend correct information in as short a period as possible. Most jobs in today’s competitive world are fast-paced. Hardly any professional has the flexibility of working at a slow pace and taking their own sweet time in completing tasks.

Therefore, verbal reasoning tests are so high on the requirements list of employers because each wants to make sure they have the right candidates with the right set of competitive skills.

Which Companies are using the Verbal Reasoning Test?

Today verbal reasoning tests and its derivates are widely used by multinational companies with a standardized recruiting process such as Coca-Cola, Mars, LVMH, Raiffeisen, Air France, and many others. In the consulting industry, these tests are used by The Big Four accounting and consulting firms, such as PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), Ernst&Young (EY), Deloitte, and KPMG. However, between different offices, the recruitment process could be slightly different.

The following companies are developing verbal reasoning and similar tests::

  • SHL – one of the oldest and popular test publishers among Fortune 500 companies.
  • Kenexa and Cubiks - the most popular test publishers for BIG4 companies.
  • Cappfinity– used by EY, Barclays, Aviva, and others, mainly in the UK market.
  • Talent Q (HayGroup), Saville Assessment, and others.

How to Prepare for the Test?

Since the verbal reasoning test is primarily about reading complex information and comprehending it, you must practice by reading journal papers of scientific material and trying to make concise summaries. Reading complex material and making resumes will train your mind in the right way of absorbing compound and tricky details and breaking down information to extract the best understanding out of it. This practice also broadens your perspective.    

You should simulate real test experience via trying as many similar tests as possible. Whenever you sit down to practice, we recommend doing so in exam-like conditions attempting the entire test in a single take and at the set time limit. Repeated practice and familiarity with the format of the test will make you more comfortable with what the actual day of the test will feel like and improve your chances of performing well.

Tips for Tackling Verbal Reasoning Tests

Here are some tips that will prove tremendously helpful in acing these types of tests.

  • Read the instructions on the actual test day, regardless of how you have practiced and how familiar you are with the test format. Some tests are different.
  • Before you attempt the test, make sure you understand how many questions you need to answer and how much time you have to complete it. Generally, most verbal reasoning tests do not ask you more than 20-25 questions, and the maximum time limit is 20 minutes.
  • Make it clear that you only determine your answers using the information the text provides. This test does not test your knowledge, but rather your comprehension skills.
  • If you are unable to work out a correct answer, you could try to discount the ones that are most likely wrong.      
  • If you happen to get stuck over a question, it is best to move on to the others without wasting time. Easier questions may follow increasing your score. Some tests allow you to go back to your previous questions to amend them if you finish early.
  • In a situation where you feel the time is running out, guessing answers may prove to work out in your favor because this assessment test does not usually include any negative markings. However, you must only make use of this tip when you find yourself short of time, and a question or two left to answer.

Final Thoughts

Consider passing a verbal reasoning test as a one-step up the ladder of success. While it does not determine your future, it does show the employers your maximum comprehension and analytical abilities, which are prerequisites for many white-collar jobs, especially in the consulting industry.

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