Numerical Reasoning Test

Are you preparing for a numerical reasoning test? Find out what you can expect in a test and how you can improve your score with our comprehensive guide.

What Are Numerical Reasoning Tests?

Abstract reasoning tests are a type of psychometric assessment. Having gained prevalence during the 1980s, they’ve become a huge part of the hiring process of many employers as they help assess an applicant’s ability to comprehend and apply numbers in their work and to determine their suitability for specific roles which require numerical skills.

These tests are designed to look at a range of skills and abilities, including basic maths or computation skills (addition, subtraction, multiplication and division), percentages and ratios, and can be incredibly useful for graduates, managers and those in senior management roles.

Abstract reasoning tests are typically used by companies and employers as a means to determine the suitability of potential employees to specific roles. They can also be used on existing employees to shed light on individuals’ mental capabilities and behavioural styles, which are otherwise difficult to measure in their job performance.

These tests are designed to look at a range of skills and abilities, including basic maths or computation skills (addition, subtraction, multiplication and division), percentages and ratios, and can be incredibly useful for graduates, managers and those in senior management roles.

They can either be taken separately or as part of a series of psychometric and aptitude tests. For example, Career Hunter’s own Numerical Reasoning Test is intended to be taken alongside its five other tests: Career Interests , Work Personality, Career Motivators, Abstract Reasoning and Verbal Reasoning.

The results from each test are then combined to provide accurate career matches based on your professional strengths, interests and priorities, along with detailed test results, relevant course recommendations and a personalised 55+ page career report.

Jobs That Require Numerical Reasoning Skills

While numerical reasoning tests can be used to evaluate candidates in many different industries and occupations, a sound numerical ability is essential for specific jobs in such fields as business, construction, engineering, science and research, and especially finance.

These include:


Aerospace Engineers


Building Control Surveyors

Business Analysts

Chemical Engineers

Financial Managers




Sample Question

The Career Hunter Numerical Reasoning Test uses 30 standard multiple-choice questions. Your task is to identify the correct answer from four or five options, based on the accompanying numerical information, tables and graphs.


The price of a one-way train ticket in country D is $0.80. If the population is 37.5 million and 63% of which is employed, what is the total amount actually spent on tickets during a random workday (one way)?







To solve this question, you first need to calculate the number of people who are employed. This is done by multiplying 37,500,000 (the population number) by 0.63 (63% of the population) which gives you 23,625,000 employees. Of these, only 13% travels to work by train, so 23,625,000 x 0.13 = 3,071,250. You then have to multiply this number by $0.80. Therefore, the answer is $2,457,000.

Tips for Preparing for a Numerical Reasoning Test

Check out the following tips to help you prepare for a numerical reasoning test and to improve your overall score!

Practice, Practice, Practice!

Practice makes perfect, and there are plenty of free online numerical reasoning tests to help you out (bear in mind, however, that these are usually low quality and out of date, so you might have to spend a little money if you want more accurate results). You might also want to read a couple of books which will help you better prepare yourself for a test. Meanwhile, most tests offer useful resources and even example questions to help you understand what the actual test involves.

Do Number Puzzles

You’ll be able to find number puzzles, like Sudoku, in newspapers and magazines, and these can help your improve your number skills.


Taking a numerical reasoning test can be terribly nerve-racking, but remember that severe test anxiety can negatively impact your overall performance. Just take a deep breath and relax. Other ways you can help ease anxiety include thoroughly preparing beforehand and even getting a good night’s sleep.

Read the Instructions Carefully

Like all psychometric tests, numerical reasoning tests are designed to challenge you and will often include trick questions. It is, therefore, essential that you carefully read the instructions provided to you in order to ensure you fully understand what you have to do and avoid making any silly mistakes.

Manage Your Time

Most numerical reasoning tests are timed. This means that it’s a good idea to allocate the same amount of time for every question – and if you get stuck with a particular question, simply move on to the next one. You can always come back later to any questions you’ve skipped with a more fresh perspective.

Read Advice Online

Meanwhile, don’t forget to check out our sister site CareerAddict’s excellent resource on psychometric tests which features comprehensive information about what they entail as well as valuable tips for preparing for a test.

Ready to find your ideal career?

Start building your career profile with our free Career Interests test, and discover your ability to work with numbers!