How to Ace Diagrammatic Reasoning Tests

Diagrammatic reasoning tests are a very popular type of assessment during the recruiting process. This kind of aptitude test usually comes as a part of logical reasoning assessment; however, these tasks can come as a separately designed assessment. Diagrammatic reasoning tests were designed to evaluate a person’s ability for logical thinking. Unlike many other aptitude assessments, diagrammatic reasoning tests don’t require any specific knowledge from you. Some researches in the psychometric field point out the correlation between the person’s educational and cultural background and their logical reasoning skills. In a nutshell, the tasks in these tests use sequences built with shapes and figures. Your job is to spot the pattern in these sequences and solve the problem by finding the correct answer. 

Employers around the globe grew fond of diagrammatic reasoning tests because the way potential workers solve the problems attests to their logical thinking abilities. Such skills are at a cornerstone of job fulfillment no matter your occupation. While you can’t train any particular skills or learn the base to ace diagrammatic reasoning there are some things to keep in mind that can help you pass the test smoother. Here we will outline some tips on how to make your diagrammatic reasoning test a success.

Keep an eye on the flow

All tasks in these types of tests include various diagrams that form sequences. There is always a missing link in this chain of statements or pictures and your job is to identify this missing element. Yet it’s important to remember that sequences can be very versatile. Most of the time the early tasks in diagrammatic reasoning tests flow from left to right which for most of the people in the Western writing tradition is the only natural order of the narrative flow. However, later on in the test, the sequence often changes its direction and it can confuse some test-takers and result in them giving the wrong answer. 

Be sure to always double-check the sequence direction. Shapes might be built in any order or direction, be it right to left or bottom to top. In some cases, the narrative flow can change its direction a couple of times within one question.

Stick to the proper diagram inspecting routine

The majority of questions in diagrammatic reasoning tests include complex shapes and figures. Therefore, to more precisely establish the correct sequence you will need to study every small detail. 

A good rule of thumb is to start from the biggest shape moving to the smallest one. Besides, take a good look at the colors and count all figures correctly. Don’t focus only on one differing aspect or shape; during the test, most of the patterns will feature a variety of differentiating factors. One of the most common mistakes is that people tend to mix up with colors in a rush and take blank figures for filling and vice versa. 

Don’t let the figures riddle you

Unlike other types of logical reasoning tests, diagrammatic reasoning tests rely heavily on diagrams. Usually, people are more confident with numbers and text passages than with shape processing. However, don’t let figures deceive you and take them as you would take numbers in a math problem. Once you’ve studied all the diagrams take them and all their details as variables. Such an approach will help you process the pattern rules easier and more in a more precise manner since you will be able to look at every detail separately and analyze it as a complex equation.

Don’t neglect test instructions

You might already have spent a dozen hours solving diagrammatic reasoning tests so when you come to take one more on your assessment day, you might want to get into solving it right away. Nevertheless, always remember to go through pre-test instructions carefully Usually, you will be given some time for that and there might be some crucial info about the test, or software navigation. Even if you have already solved a similar test from this specific test provider, employers tend to make small changes regarding the job specification or personal considerations.

Manage your time

Time is an essential component of every aptitude test. Usually, each task is designed for you to solve in under one minute. Therefore, it is crucial for you to keep up the pace in order to solve every question. Don’t hover too long over one question if you find it too complicated. Move on to the next one and return to the tough nut to crack later. Take a deep breath before starting the assessment, focus on the thought that you’ve come here prepared and move on to solving at a steady pace.

Practice is key

There is no better way to become familiar with diagrammatic reasoning tests than practice. These tests urge you to mobilize skills and comprehension you rarely use in your daily life. 

Therefore, repeated solving of diagrammatic reasoning tests will help you better spot patterns in shapes and understand other fundamental principles of these inquiries. 

Besides, it will help you elaborate your comfortable solving pace and give a significant boost to your confidence. You can also make your practice more varied by solving jig-saw puzzles and sudoku since these games require similar skills.

About the author


Francis Dimaano

Francis is a freelance writer and an IT graduate student. He works at the Practice Aptitude Tests in the comfort of his home. When he’s not writing, Francis spends time reading books, travel around his country, volunteering and feeding street children.