Diagrammatic Reasoning Tests

Diagrammatic reasoning aptitude tests are a type of intelligence test that measure a person's ability to reason using diagrams.

  • What are diagrammatic reasoning aptitude tests?

    Diagrammatic reasoning is sometimes known as abstract reasoning or indicative reasoning.

    In a diagrammatic reasoning test, a candidate is presented with questions that consist of a series of images, shapes, patterns, or numbers. The series is a sequence that is governed by a rule, and there is an item missing in the sequence.

    The candidate needs to discover the pattern that governs the sequence to choose the right answer from the multiple-choice options presented.

    Diagrammatic reasoning tests are aptitude assessments that can be used as part of the pre-employment screening section of a recruitment process. They are easy to administer to a large number of candidates, and they provide quantifiable data that can be used to choose the most qualified applicants for a role.

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  • What do diagrammatic reasoning tests measure?

    Diagrammatic reasoning tests assess a candidate based on their inductive logic. By presenting sequences of images or shapes, the assessment measures pure reasoning skills which are not dependent on cultural background, language, or even level of education.

    Inductive reasoning is the ability to take unfamiliar information and use it to make a general deduction. Employees with good diagrammatic or inductive reasoning skills are able to make decisions quickly based on multiple data sources and can apply logic and critical thinking to problems so that they can come up with a solution.

    The diagrammatic reasoning assessment is a simple measurement of logic that can demonstrate problem-solving, critical thinking, and logical reasoning skills without needing specific job-related or education-related knowledge.

Sample Diagrammatic Reasoning Tests question

Which shape fits the sequence?

  • A

  • B

  • C

  • D

  • E

  • F

What employers use diagrammatic reasoning tests and why?

Diagrammatic reasoning tests are often used as pre-employment screening assessments in the recruitment process of roles where dealing with conceptual or complex problems is a part of the job. These are often higher-level roles with an element of responsibility, such as:

  • Consultants
  • Managers
  • Team leaders
  • IT
  • Engineering
  • Science
  • Technicians

As the diagrammatic reasoning test is simple to administer and asks the right questions, employers who are looking for candidates that have the ability to think logically and an aptitude for abstract and conceptual problem solving can rely on the results to help them choose the very best out of a large number of applicants.

diagrammatic reasoning

What are the benefits of using a diagrammatic reasoning test in your hiring process?

If you are recruiting for a role that requires candidates to have an aptitude for logical thinking, then using a diagrammatic reasoning test in your hiring process can be beneficial in a number of ways - not least reducing the costs relating to hiring and reducing the risk of an expensive bad hire.

The diagrammatic reasoning assessment asks the same question of every candidate, and it is delivered to applicants via email so that it can be completed online and in their own time. This takes the burden of screening away from the recruitment team, saving both money and time.

The results of the assessment are presented as objective, quantifiable datasets that can be used to take only the best-performing candidates further into the process. As the assessment does not rely on language knowledge, education level, or previous experience to answer, every candidate has the same opportunity to demonstrate their aptitude in applying inductive logic to problems.

For the candidate, the assessment is simple enough to understand. It is a click-through online assessment that has a time limit and needs to be completed under exam conditions.


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Greg Chambers, HR Business Partner, Littlefish Ltd
Greg Chambers, HR Business Partner, Littlefish Ltd
Diagrammatic Reasoning Tests expert

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Diagrammatic Reasoning Tests FAQs

How hard are diagrammatic reasoning tests?

For the candidate, the most difficult thing about the diagrammatic reasoning test is likely to be the exam conditions and pressure related to the time limit, as well as the unfamiliarity of the assessment itself. The content of the questions and the way they need to be answered tend to be less complicated.

What do diagrammatic reasoning tests measure?

Diagrammatic reasoning tests measure a candidate on their inductive reasoning, which is often described as pure logic. It measures an applicant on their ability to take unfamiliar information and spot patterns or trends which can then be used to make the right, logical, decision.

Are these tests available in my plan?

We have a range of plans available. The difference between the plans is the number of test attempts permitted, not the type of tests. All our plans include our full test suite comprising all tests and all levels.

Can I see what the test is like?

Yes, of course. You can try the test for free by signing up for a free trial.

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Laurence Fishman, Partner, NLPCA

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