About the NZDF Numerical Ability Test
The NZDF Numerical Ability Test is published bySHL, a global aptitude test publisher that specialises in producing tests for use in pre-employment screenings to ensure that candidates have the required aptitudes for success in the role.
The NZDF Numerical Ability assessment is part of the first online aptitude test that you will take as part of the application process to join the New Zealand Defence Force, and it is an assessment of your ability to quickly read, understand and analyse data in the form of graphs and tables, and be able to manipulate it using simple mathematical operators (adding, multiplying, subtracting and dividing) as well as percentages, fractions and ratios.
The Format of the NZDF Numerical Ability Test
In the Numerical Ability test, you will be presented with 18 questions that must be answered in a specified time limit (between 17-25 minutes, depending on the role).
Each question will be based on a table or graph, and the answers are multiple choice. The actual questions are not designed to be difficult - despite the numerical content, this is not a maths test as such, it is more an assessment of your ability to manipulate numbers by applying basic maths.
To be successful, you need to quickly read and understand the data as presented, and then work out the correct answer from a choice of five possible solutions.
How is the NZDF Numerical Ability Test Scored?
As with all SHL assessments, the scoring of the Numerical Ability test has two distinct stages. The first part of the scoring is the number of answers that are correct, as well as the number of incorrect answers, and the number of questions not answered.
The Numerical Ability test is not negatively marked, so you will not be penalised for a wrong answer - this means that it is a good idea to try and answer all the questions, even if you are making an educated guess.
This raw score is then compared against a norm group composed of people who are in the role and at a similar level to you, which creates a percentile score that might be expressed as 78th percentile. That means that you scored higher than 77% of the people in the norm group.
In practice, your actual score is not as important as the percentile; the percentile score is graded from A - E, with A being described as well above average and E as well below average.
How to Prepare for the NZDF Numerical Ability Test
As the Numerical Ability test is an assessment of the way you can apply mathematical knowledge, rather than a maths test, all you need to do is be confident in the use of basic operators and manipulating percentages, ratios and fractions. This is high school level maths, so a quick brush up on skills will set you in good stead to perform well.
Assessments like these can be stressful because they are so unfamiliar - and this is where practice tests can come in handy.
There are practice tests available on the SHL website, and these are really useful for you to see the layout of the tests, how they should be answered, and what the content might look like. When you are practicing, try and make it as 'realistic' as possible - set a timer, make your test area somewhere that you won't be disturbed, and answer to the best of your ability.
If you can, check the results of your practice test to see if there is a type of numerical question that you might have struggled to answer - that will help you focus your revision and practice to work on them.
On the day, make sure that you are well rested and have eaten a good meal, stay hydrated, and keep calm. Give yourself the best chance to perform well.
Check out our full New Zealand Defence Force Aptitude Tests page here.