Pre-Employment Exams

Pre- Employment Exams

The examination processes are developed to reflect the requirements of the job and consequently, can include different methods of testing (i.e., written examination, practical examination, training and experience evaluation, structured interview, physical ability, etc.). Different exams assess different knowledge, skills, and abilities. For example, an examination process may include a written examination to test technical knowledge and reading comprehension, while a practical examination may be given to test ability to operate a piece of equipment. In any case, the job announcement will outline the types of examinations intended for a particular position or let you know the information will be provided prior to the exam.

Preparation & Tips

Preparing for a written employment test is not like an exam for school where there is a text book and lecture notes to study. The job announcement describes in general terms the "scope" of the test, by naming the subjects to be tested. Your own experience often gives you a great deal of knowledge about the subject of the test. Some tips for taking the exams are below.

  • Most written tests are a multiple-choice format.
  • Read the directions to make sure you understand how to answer the questions. Do not hesitate to ask the test administrator if you are unsure of what to do.
  • Keep track of the time, saving enough time at the end to go back and see that all questions have been answered. If you don't know - guess.
  • Read each question carefully and read all alternatives. No item is meant to be tricky, so make sure you understand what is being asked.
  • If you skip a question, be careful in checking the answer sheet. It is easy to get off track, so check yourself often.
  • Only change an answer if you are absolutely certain you originally answered in error. As a general rule, your first instinct is correct.
  • Approach the test confidently.
  • Arrive on time and ready.