Back when we signed up for The Award we were very aware (and terrified) of the fact we’d be doing psychometric tests and we would have to perform well in them in order to pass The Award. Of course being students we just put them to the back of our minds and forgot about them. All of a sudden they came around and so the panicking began! The scariest part was receiving the email containing all the instructions, telling us we had 24 hours to complete the tests and submit the results.
The prospect of the tests may seem terrifying, but it’s not as bad as you think. For both tests you have 60 questions and 20 minutes to answer them. In order to pass (to get the Cardiff Award) you have to score in the 40th percentile or higher. Being a maths student I thought that I’d find the numeracy test quite easy but I was definitely wrong. I only managed to answer half the questions and of those I answered I only 2/3 correct. You might be wondering where I’m going with this, but I still managed to score in a high percentile, which just goes to show that it’s not just about racing through the test, getting the questions right is also key. Both tests focused on gaining a good level of speed and accuracy. They’re really not as bad as you think they are!
My advice would be:
- Be prepared – do some practice tests first to get used to the format
- Isolate yourself – when you do the test be somewhere quiet where you can’t be disturbed
- Keep calm and carry on – (cliché alert!) If you do fail, you have chance to re-sit. If you can’t do a certain question, don’t take ages on it – take a guess and move on (you have a 25% chance of being correct anyway – that’s my mathematician brain coming through though!).
I am so glad I had the chance to complete these tests through the Award, they gave me a real insight into what to expect for the “real thing”. I feel much more confident approaching these as I (sort of) know what to expect (you never actually know what they are going to throw at you but at least I have had the chance to practise in advance).