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A 2020 Guide to Numerical Reasoning Tests

Excitement so far in 2020 may be in short supply, (no thanks to coronavirus), but this time at home can be useful for one thing at least - honing your numerical reasoning test skills. Doing so will help you prepare for graduate schemes and ensure you are interview ready.

Guy Thornton
Guy Thornton April 22, 2020
A 2020 Guide to Numerical Reasoning Tests

What is a numerical reasoning test?

Numerical reasoning tests are used to assess a broad spectrum of mathematical knowledge, including ratios, percentages, financial information and currency conversions. The test questions are normally shown in the form of real life business activities, with graphs, long numbers and equations included. These can be challenging, especially as they are normally timed, but with practice and learning some simple formulas you shouldn’t need to worry.

What is the format of a numerical reasoning test?

The numerical reasoning tests can differ from your exams at university, regardless of what degree you have taken, so it’s advisable to practice numerical reasoning tests in order to feel comfortable with the exam and question format. The tests will be multiple choice and have a definite answer, unlike verbal reasoning. However the timed conditions can make this more difficult! Don’t however, make assumptions with the data - there will be an answer available from the information provided.

Why do employers use numerical reasoning tests?

These tests help employers such as those in investment banking or management consulting, see your ability to work with numerical information and solve data logically. They are also used to help potential employers work out who to invite to interview or assessment days. Employers who handle a great deal of accurate data are keen to see how proficient you are with numbers and basic formulas, normally under a time pressure. They use this to sift through candidates by measuring your potential performance at work. These practice numerical reasoning tests are written by industry professionals and are designed to replicate real tests to help you increase your confidence and ace your assessment day.

How can I prepare?

Use this time stuck at home to practice different numerical reasoning tests. The best way to feel confident in the test, is to make sure you do this in timed exam-like conditions to improve your speed and accuracy. You could always ask your potential employer what format the test will be taken in to ensure you are practising in the same way. It is helpful to review any incorrect answers straight afterwards as you are more likely to learn from mistakes when they are fresh in your mind. Having a calculator as well as pen and paper for rough calculations is key. Most tests are timed for each question, so you need to move fast to complete the entire test.

Make sure you have read all the instructions carefully before beginning and if you get stuck move onto the next question. Make sure you use this time to focus on areas you find the hardest! You can also learn some simple formulas to help you answer some of the questions.

So pause Netflix and step away from the biscuit tin, instead use this time to practice your numerical reasoning tests and feel confident and ready to ace your up and coming assessment days.

Guy Thornton
Guy Thornton April 22, 2020

Topics:

  • Finance

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