If you are applying for an internship or a graduate job, you will definitely know about the recruiting process including the CV scanning step, aptitude test, group interviews and individual interviews. You need to spend a lot of time preparing for each step to make sure you can get through easily and obtain a position that you are aiming for.

In case of the aptitude tests, with the increase in the importance of these tests, there are more and more companies providing the testing solutions to the employers. One of the widely used test providers in the US is Criteria.

Read on to learn more about tests that Criteria provides, the structures of the tests as well as the helpful tips for you to do your best on these tests.

1)     Who’s Criteria?

Criteria is one of the biggest test providers in the pre-employment testing services in the US to help employers assess various aspects of a potential candidate. There are three main test areas that Criteria provides including Aptitude test, Personality Test and Skills Test.  Each test measures different skills and qualities, and Criteria’s tests also vary in length and time limit. Different companies in different industries also use the different sets of Criteria tests.

Among 3 types of tests, the Aptitude test and Personality test are the most commonly used tests to assess the potential of the candidates in his or her future working environment. In this article, we focus on the first two tests as they are the most popular and require more preparation.

2) Criteria Cognitive Aptitude Test (CCAT)

2.1. Test overview


Criteria Cognitive Aptitude Test (CCAT) is used to measure the critical thinking, problem-solving ability and aptitude for learning and applying new information. With a high score in the CCAT, candidates are believed to be quick at learning and performing.

After a candidate finishes the CCAT, he or she will be presented with the result including a raw score and a percentile ranking. It also provides extra details about the percentile of the right answers in 3 categories including spatial reasoning, verbal ability and math and logic. Last but not least, it also provides the score ranges for various positions such as analysts, software developers or salesmen.

2.2 CCAT structure


Each CCAT is timed within 15 minutes and has 50 questions. These questions fall into 3 categories including math and logic, spatial reasoning and verbal ability.

2.3 Other Aptitude Tests

Besides the popular Criteria Cognitive Aptitude Test, there are other Criteria Aptitude tests. They are used for different industries.

  • Universal Cognitive Aptitude Test (UCAT): With this test, a candidate has to answer 40 questions in 20 minutes. This test is also used to assess the problem-solving skills and critical thinking of a potential employee.
  • MiniCog Rapid Assessment Battery (MRAB): You have to answer a series of 9 short tests. Your reasoning logical thinking and ability to remember will be tested with this test.
  • Criteria Attention Skills Test (CAST): This test limits at 12 minutes to test your concentration. It is used for various jobs such as air traffic controllers and truck drivers.
  • Wiesen Test of Mechanical Aptitude (WTMA): The time to take this test is 30 minutes. It is used to test potential mechanics on the ability to install, operate as well as maintaining and repairing a piece of machinery.

3)  Criteria Personality Test

3.1 Test overview

This type of test is used to measure the personality and character of a candidate. Employers will use the results of the test to assess whether the candidate has the character traits that are suitable for him or her to perform well in a specific job or position. There are several personality tests but all of them will only take you about 10 to 15 minutes to finish the test.

After a candidate finishes the test, the score will be converted into a percentile ranking order.

3.2 Personality test structure

Here are 5 different personality tests the Criteria offers:

  • Sales Achievement Predictor (SalesAP): This test is used to access the characteristics for sales related positions.
  • Customer Service Aptitude Profile (CSAP): This test measures your cooperativeness, personal diplomacy and patience for customer-service related positions.
  • Employee Personality Profile (EPP): This test will measure 12 personality traits in order to predict your working style. Some of the traits are Achievement, Assertiveness, Competitiveness, Managerial, Motivation, Openness, Patience and Self-Confidence.
  • Workplace Productivity Profile (WPP): This test helps to predict your rule adherence as well as reliability for various entry-level
  • Criteria Personality Inventory (CPI): This test measures how well a candidate can connect with other people, a key important factor to determine the performance of such candidate.

4)  Tips to prepare for CCAT and Criteria Personality Tests

4.1 Take Mock Tests

You should spend time taking several practice tests in order to get used to the format and the types of questions of the tests. Not only should you try a mock test from Criteria, you should also do practice tests in various areas that Criteria tests including spatial, verbal reasoning and logical questions. This will help you to become more familiar with the tests as well as some common wordings you might encounter in your real test.

Practise Criteria Mock Tests here.

4.2 Stay Relaxed

Your mind is only at your best when you stay away from stress. So it is important that before the day of the test, you can sleep for a sufficient amount of time. Follow a healthy diet and exercise frequently as well.

On the day of the test, you should arrive early to take a look at the test site and allow yourself some amount of time to rest before taking the test.

4.3 Skip Difficult Questions

First of all, easy questions and difficult questions have the same mark. Second of all, if you spend too much time on one question, you don’t have time for other easy questions. Keep in mind that in 15 minutes, it is a challenging task for not only you but also other candidates to answer all of the questions.

4.4 Guess

If you aren’t able to come up with an answer, you should guess it. Even if you get it wrong, you wouldn’t be taken off points. You might even get a mark if you guess it right.

Also, pay attention to the answer choices. Some answers seem to be unreasonable and they truly are. Ruling out these answers will help you come up with the right answer.

When you have several questions and just a little bit of time left, guess and fill in all of the remaining questions. You might get some bonus points.

5)  Which Companies in the US use Criteria Test?

Here are some companies in the US that use Criteria Tests, note that they are in different industries.

  • NASA: This Company uses Criteria tests to assess the capability of an astronaut candidate to fly a space shuttle.
  • There are some government and public sector organizations which uses Criteria as well including State of New Mexico, City of Natchez, Pinal Country, Mesa County and Douglas Country.
  • eHarmony: This company is an online dating company founded 17 years ago in California US.
  • US Oil: This Company specializes in manufacturing and distributing of wholesale fuel.
  • Liberty Tax Service: This company specializes in preparing tax returns for the individual and small business. Founded in 1997, this is one of the 3 largest tax preparation franchises in the US.
  • American Healthcare: Established for more than 30 years, this company is currently using Criteria tests for various positions in its healthcare related jobs.
  • Domino’s Pizza: One of the largest pizza company chains, not only in the US but also all over the world. It currently uses Criteria tests for their entry-level jobs as well as senior positions.
  • Keen Transport, Inc.: The company is the leader in heavy equipment transportation and trucking.
  • Vista Equity Partners: this company is currently using Criteria tests for various positions in its subsidiaries companies.

You can check for the ultimate list of the companies which currently use Criteria tests at the following link https://www.criteriacorp.com/customers/index.php.

I hope that after reading this article, you will know more about the Criteria tests, its format and some tips you can apply for the upcoming test. As long as you prepare, do some mock test and stay calm before and after the tests, I’m sure that you would be able to do your best and achieve the best result.

Practise Criteria Sample Tests here.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *