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Inductive Reasoning Test

Inductive reasoning tests are yet another one of those niggly tests used by recruiters to suss out your skills and abilities. Sometimes referred to as an abstract reasoning test or diagrammatic style test, inductive reasoning tests are designed to test your logical problem solving ability.

The test is designed to present you with unfamiliar situations and see if you can find solutions. It is popularly used by technical, finance and engineering employers and those looking for employees who can think conceptually as well as analytically.

What will an inductive reasoning test involve?

Usually, an inductive reasoning test will be made up of a series of graphics, illustrations or sets of words. You’ll have to spot the pattern in each series and indicate what shape/illustration/word will come next. These questions are pretty much always multiple choice.

The most common form of the test is finding patterns in a series of shapes. The patterns are usually a mixture of transformations: like rotation, replacement, translation, alternations or reflection. You’ll probably be against a time limit too.

How can I prepare for an inductive reasoning test?

With all tests, it’s good to try out a few practice tests first. That way you can familiarise yourself with the format of the test and get a reasonable idea of what to expect. This means you won’t waste valuable minutes staring in bafflement at the test when it comes to the real thing.

The test is designed to test your intuitive logical problem solving ability, so, unfortunately, even if you spend hours and hours practising, you probably won’t improve your score hugely. Practicing will, however, help you to avoid making basic mistakes.

How can I ace an inductive reasoning test?

Unfortunately, there is no magic formula to performing well on these tests. However, it’s always wise to take some practice tests first so you can familiarise yourself with the format.

With any test, you’ll want to balance accuracy with speed. If you’re stuck on a question, move on and go back to it later. If you finish early, always go back over your answers and double check them.

Candidates can be let down by inaccuracy. Paying attention to detail is paramount, particularly as you’ll usually have to spot two or more patterns in each series of shapes, illustrations or words.

Practising does really help, as you’ll learn to look for certain patterns and familiarise yourself with the test. Ultimately though, it’s all about testing your natural problem solving abilities.