Careers Service

Recruitment Tests

Recruitment Tests


Recruitment tests are often used by employers as part of the selection process. They can also help you identify your strengths and abilities, and assess your suitability for particular careers or occupations.

These are sometimes known as psychometric, aptitude, cognitive, ability or intelligence tests. The most common tests assess your abilities in the areas of verbal and numerical reasoning.

Abstract or diagrammatic reasoning tests may also be used to assess your logic and visual thinking skills.

Watch the Careers Service's online Masterclass presentation 'How to Prepare for Psychometric Tests'.  

To view the presentation with subtitles, click the CC button in the player below. You can also view a full screen version

Tips for success when taking recruitment tests

  • Try out the type of aptitude tests used by many employers - see practice tests to have a go
  • Reach the test location in good time, well-rested and in a positive frame of mind
  • Take the time to work through any practice questions, before the test itself begins
  • Try to be aware of the time as you work through the questions – work out before the test starts roughly how much time you have for each question and try to work quickly and accurately
  • Don't spend too long on a question that you are struggling with, but don't abandon a question prematurely if you are close to solving it
  • Avoid wild guessing, in some tests marks are taken off for incorrect answers

Help with numeracy skills

For help with numeracy skills, Maths-Aid at the University have practice tests and resources to help you refresh your maths skills. You can also get free one-to-one help from tutors in the Maths-Aid drop-in centre in the Philip Robinson Library. You can find more details including opening hours on the Maths-Aid website.

Additional support can also be found on the Library's Academic Skills Kit (ASK) website, with help and advice on maths, numeracy and statistics.  See also mathcentre, for a range of self-study resources including video tutorials, workbooks and online practice exercises.

BBC Bitesize includes tests and revision material for GCSE level maths, or for tips on taking a numerical reasoning test, visit the Assessment Day website.

Further information

The following websites provide further information about recruitment assessments and how to prepare for them:

Practice Tests

Here you can find links to online practice tests and a list of reference books available within the Careers Service.

Graduates First online practice tests

Graduates First offer a range of recruitment tests and advice on preparing for job assessments, including step-by-step guides to over 100 graduate employer's recruitment stages and hints on how to pass their assessment process.

Visit the Newcastle University portal on Graduates First to access a range of online practice tests including:

  • 7 verbal reasoning tests
  • 7 numerical reasoning tests
  • 7 logical reasoning tests
  • situational judgement test
  • Watson-Glaser critical thinking test
  • work style personality questionnaire
  • interview question Identifier tool

You can also find information and examples of assessment centre activities, including case study and in-tray exercises. 

To register:

  • go to the Newcastle University Graduates First portal
  • register using your Newcastle email address ( and complete the registration form in full
  • if you have a disability that could affect your performance on the tests (eg dyslexia), you can request additional time (25%) when registering

You should receive an email providing you with a link to confirm your email address, and then you’re ready to start your practice tests. If you don't receive an email after registering, please check in the Clutter folder of your Newcastle email account.

If you're a Newcastle graduate of the last 3 years, please contact us on My Career by clicking on the Resources tab to submit your query. Please include with your full name, email address and degree title and we'll create an account for you. Please also let us know if you require additional time for the tests. We aim to register you within 3 working days of receiving your email.

To use the tests:

Login to the Newcastle University Graduates First portal with the username and password you created.

You'll receive a detailed report immediately after you have completed each test, which will include advice on your strengths, areas for development and how to improve your performance.

If you have any technical problems with the tests, please contact Graduates First at The Careers Service will not be able to help with any technical issues.


Additional example tests and advice

For examples of case study tests, see our information on Assessment centres.

Example tests from employers

  • Procter & Gamble – practice reasoning test
  • EY – situational strengths test
  • CMS Law - psychometric test from an international law firm 

Reference books

The following books are available for reference use in the Careers Service.

'How to' guides

  • How to pass graduate psychometric tests, Mike Bryon
  • How to succeed at an assessment centre, Harry Tolley
  • How to pass advanced numeracy tests, Mike Bryon
  • How to pass numerical reasoning tests, Heidi Smith

Preparation and practical advice

  • Practice tests for diagrammatic and abstract reasoning, Peter Rhodes
  • Perfect numerical test results, Joanna Moutafi
  • Prepare for tests at interview for graduates and managers, Robert Williams

Personality Tests

Personality questionnaires are used to see how you react to different situations.

There are no right or wrong answers. The questionnaires generate a profile of you, highlighting your personal qualities and characteristics. They are usually untimed, but you will be encouraged to complete them relatively quickly.

Tips for completing personality questionnaires

You should be honest with your answers. Go with your first thought and 'be yourself'.

There is little point in trying to identify or second guess the qualities selectors are looking for. There is unlikely to be one exact 'profile' to fill. Tests are usually designed to identify when someone is giving a false picture of themselves.

Example personality tests

The following websites provide examples of personality tests and questionnaires.

Specialist Tests

Some sectors, such as medicine, business and law, have specialist tests.

Medicine and dentistry 

Most medical schools and some dental schools use the UK Clinical Aptitude Test (UKCAT) for entry to their courses. You can try out a practice test on the UKCAT website.

The Graduate Medical School Admissions Test (GAMSAT) is used by some medical schools, especially for the 4 year graduate entry course. Visit the UCAS website for more details. Practice GAMSAT questions are available to buy on the GAMSAT website, together with tips and advice.

BMAT is the admissions test for medicine and veterinary medicine used for some courses at Oxford, Cambridge, Imperial, Leeds, Lancaster, UCL and the Royal Veterinary College. The BMAT website includes example questions.

More information is available about applying to medical school


The Graduate Management Admissions Test (GMAT) is used as an entry requirement by most major US business schools and is used worldwide. GMAT Guide is a US-based site that provides advice and tips to help prospective graduate business students plan and prepare for the GMAT.  

The Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) is an admissions requirement for many graduate schools in the US. Includes sample tests and details of test centres.

The TopMBA website includes links to the five top free GMAT preparation resources online.


The LNAT National Admissions Test for Law is used for admissions to law undergraduate courses at several UK universities including Birmingham, Bristol, Durham, Glasgow, King's College London, Nottingham, Oxford, SOAS and University College London.

For more information about applying for jobs in law see our Sector-specific Information.