How to Pass a Situational Judgement Test

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Table Of Contents

As part of the pre-employment process , jobseekers in many career fields may run into something called a Situational Judgement Test (SJT) during the applicant screening. This test is designed to assess a candidate’s behavioral and cognitive abilities. The use of SJTs dates back to the 1920s and is still a valuable resource for businesses today. In order to minimize surprises during the pre-employment process, taking practice tests, like those from JobTestPrep , can help you prepare and give you valuable insight.

What is a Situational Judgement Test?

Your behavioral and cognitive abilities are tested thoroughly during an SJT. Can you efficiently problem-solve? How do you deal with conflict when it arises? Critical thinking and decision-making skills are vital in many career fields and roles. Tests differ based on the role being offered, but questions are often presented as hypothetical scenarios with multiple choice options.

How to Pass a Situational JudgementTest


First start by researching your potential employer. This will help you understand fully what the employer does, their background, etc.


Make sure you know and understand the role you are applying for. Look at the job description closely.



After taking practice tests, spend time reviewing them. JobTestPrep provides detailed explanations of answers. Look those explanations over to understand every scenario better and try to look at them from a different perspective, particularly from your future employer’s perspective. You’ll get more out of SJT practice tests learning from your wrong answers than your right answers.

As you take practice tests, you may start to notice patterns in your responses. What personality or behavioral traits do you need to work on to become a better leader? Use this practice time to make adjustments to your thinking when needed. Taking time for an honest assessment of your various traits may be the difference between landing a job or not. If anything, you’ll have a better understanding of why you think a particular way and how you can use that to your advantage in the future.


After taking practice tests, you will have an idea of how long it takes you. This will help you to manage your time efficiently.


Remember to always be yourself!

What Jobs Require a Situational Judgement Test?

Jobs that may require a Situational Judgement Test include:

  • Nurses
  • Police Officers
  • Administrators
  • Supervisors
  • Managers
  • Salespeople
  • Customer Service Representatives
  • Call Center Representatives

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This list is not exhaustive and other career fields may also incorporate an SJT into their employment screening process. Any job requiring critical thinking skills may choose to utilize a Situational Judgement Test when evaluating potential hires.

What is the Format for a Situational Judgement Test?

Hypothetical situations make up the majority of a situational judgement test. You can expect between 25-50 hypothetical scenarios on any given SJT. Many SJTs will present you with scenarios, and you have to find the most suitable response from multiple choices. On other SJTs, you’ll have to rank responses in order of effectiveness. The goal is to challenge you to recognize not only the best response but also analyze the effectiveness of all responses.

Here’s an example of a question format from JobTestPrep:

Source: JobTestPrep

Source: JobTestPrep

Situational judgement tests aren’t one-size-fits-all. JobTestPrep offers situational judgement test preparation for various industries and job roles, including:

Situational judgement tests are meant to be challenging and engaging. Through work-based scenarios, employers can get a clear idea of what they may be getting in a potential employee. Taking time to prepare for your specific situational judgement test will come in handy when you sit down to take the real test.

Other Types of Tests Job Candidates May Run Into

Besides situational judgement tests, companies rely on other tests to analyze the aptitude and compatibility of potential hires. Here are some tests you may see as you are seeking employment.

Here are many of the skills tests you may come across in your job search:

  • Pre-Employment Assessment
  • Numerical Reasoning
  • Logical Reasoning
  • Excel Skills
  • Typing Skills
  • Verbal Reasoning
  • Analytical Reasoning
  • Mechanical Aptitude
  • Clerical Aptitude

Here’s a brief explanation of some of the types of tests you may see:

Aptitude and Reasoning tests: These tests are designed to test your general cognition. How you process various numerical, verbal, and mechanical functions is on display with aptitude and reasoning tests. Employers want to see if you can predict outcomes and make deductions based on the information provided

Clerical tests: Clerical jobs require clerical skills. These tests gauge whether you have the aptitude to complete tasks you may complete daily in specific roles within a company. Skills tested may include record-keeping, coding, numerical functions, and verbal skills.

Data Entry tests: Applicants are given data with these tests and have to enter it as quickly as possible. Speed and accuracy are the main indicators tested by employers. Error checking is another valuable skill covered with data entry tests.

Personality tests: Does your personality traits make a good fit with a potential employer? Through the use of personality tests, companies can look at your personality traits and tendencies. This will clue them into whether you will fit a particular job role or department.

Microsoft skills tests: Companies that use the Microsoft Office Suite may want to test your aptitude with programs like Word and Excel. Tests may consist of basic program concepts and functions or can be more advanced in nature.

For more comprehensive descriptions of each test, check out our detailed career test guide.

What Happens Next?

Depending on where a situational judgement test falls in a company’s hiring process, you may be asked back for a second interview. Although this is a very good thing, Landing a second interview doesn’t mean you’ve been offered the position yet. This is where a hiring manager, and possibly other key staff members, may ask more pointed interview questions to determine if you’re the right candidate. You can expect to be scrutinized more during a second interview. If your SJT test revealed any trends, positive or negative, they may discuss your test results and ask more questions.

Depending on the specific job, you may be asked to prepare a presentation or provide other information pertinent to their job search. Companies want to know what separates you from other job candidates.

Take advantage of the opportunity if a company requests a second interview. This is your chance to show off your personality and help them determine if you’re the right candidate for the job. Answer any questions they may have. This is also an opportunity for you to ask questions about the company or the specific job role. This may be your last chance to make an impression on the company decision-makers before they make a final decision on who they hire.

Final Thoughts

For many jobs, Situational Judgement Tests are essential assessment tools to inform hiring decisions. Taking time to prepare for career tests may seem excessive, but they could be the difference between being hired or not. JobTestPrep provides valuable resources to help prepare you for situational judgement tests as well as most other career tests used by employers. Spend time preparing and reviewing so you’re ready when it's time to take the real test.