Did you know that although a lot of jobseekers pass the Criteria Cognitive Aptitude Test (CCAT), most of these passers are still turned away by prospective employers despite having a solid resume and a stellar interview prior to taking the exam.
Why is this? Well, it’s not because they failed due to some technicality, but because there are just more preferable applicants compared to them.
These applicants are those that managed to take CCAT practice tests, understood each question type, and got an impressive score that they stand out from the rest of the other candidates.
That’s right, when you take the CCAT assessments, it won’t be enough for you to pass it.
In order for you to get a good chance of landing the job, you must stand out from the rest of the applicants with a good CCAT score because the exam follows a percentile ranking system.
This means that even a single point advantage can boost you to the top of the list and proceed to the next part of the hiring process.
So, let’s take a good look at a number of things on how to prepare for the CCAT test types and how you can not only pass it but improve or get a formidable score so that the company will choose you for the available position instead of someone else.
1. Learn that it’s not about how fast you are, but how many points you can get
When trying to land a job, aspiring professionals make the mistake of bringing a habit that they’ve learned for years throughout their education: you need to answer everything as fast as you can within the time limit of the test.
Although the same principle applies in the CCAT, sticking by this can do more harm than good.
This is because you only have 15 minutes to answer 50 questions of varying difficulty from three major subjects that each contain multiple subtopics.
If you tried to answer this exam conventionally, then you only have exactly 18 seconds to read the question, look through the choices, and then make the necessary analysis needed to find the correct answer, including any calculations required if it’s a math problem.
Trying to rush the CCAT in an attempt to answer everything will most likely give you more incorrect ones and by then you can expect to be put in the lowest percentile, thus ruining your chances of getting hired.
As a result, it would be better for you to accept that there are questions that you might not be able to answer and instead focus on making sure that you get points on the ones that you are more familiar with.
Whether this is through the verbal, numerical, or spatial reasoning subject, it will all be up to you on which subject of the CCAT is the easiest.
2. Make yourself one of the very few to complete it by… Guessing!
Apart from your cognitive ability, the CCAT assessments also aim to determine how good your critical thinking skills are by making you face a dilemma: leave a question unanswered or try to answer it anyway so that you can at least have a chance of landing a point.
Most test-takers don’t know that making an educated guess is a valid way of tackling the exam, and this is also the main reason why some test-takers have a ten-point to fifteen-point advantage over the rest.
With how big of a gap this is, we can see why companies ignore a majority of applicants as it is already obvious who can meet and exceed their expectations.
So, when you’re faced with a difficult question, especially from a subject that you know you are weak to, do not be afraid to read through the question and the choices once, then try to do an educated guess.
In doing so, you are maximizing your chances of being hired.
3. Focus on what’s in the exam!
Apart from being unprepared, one of the many reasons why applicants fail the CCAT is because they overestimated its subject matter and studied topics that are unrelated or not covered in the exam.
Ideally, you only need to focus on studying on the following topics:
Verbal Reasoning Test
- Word Completion
- Error/Match Checking
- Logic-based questions
Numerical Reasoning Test
- Basic Operations and arithmetic
- Word Problems
- Chart/Graph Analysis
- Number Series
Spatial Reasoning Test
- Odd One Out
- Sequence Determination
Apart from the supplied topics above, there is really nothing else you have to study for.
4. Practice as much as you can!
Like with every exam out there, the CCAT can be turned into a cakewalk with enough practice and by familiarizing yourself with the question types as well as the different subjects contained within.
Online CCAT practice tests not only provide you with questions that are similar or near identical to the ones that you can encounter at the actual exam but also in-depth explanations, tips, and even tricks on how to answer each subject as fast as possible.
Couple this with the fact that the CCAT practice test will help you get used to the timed environment, allowing you to plan accordingly at test day, then it cannot be understated how useful these resources will be in helping you prepare and pass the assessment.
Remember, you are not only preparing to take an exam; you are also vying for a position that dozens of others want, especially if said job opening is from a prestigious or well-known company.