What are Thomas International Tests?
Thomas International is a global publisher of aptitude tests that help employers assess candidates in a range of different areas. The assessment has been developed for over 40 years and helps to ensure applicants are suitable for military and armed force positions.
Recruitment for the armed forces is supported mainly by Thomas International, which provides aptitude tests, assessments and test centres. Their main purpose is to identify each applicant's strengths and weaknesses.
The four assessments focus on measuring behaviour, workplace personality and employee aptitude as well as your emotional intelligence and engagement.
The Thomas International GIA test was originally developed for the armed forces but has since been adapted for a range of employers and roles.
What are the Different Types of Thomas International Tests?
There are four main types of assessment tests for the Thomas International Assessment.
- Aptitude (GIA) Assessment
- Behaviour (PPA) Assessment
- Workplace Personality (HPTI) Assessment
- Emotional Intelligence (TEIQue) Assessment
The GIA assessment measures the quickness of a candidate's ability to learn, comprehend and remember key information.
The PPA assessment measures behavioural preferences and how a candidate communicates with others. It can help an employer know if the applicant will be a good cultural fit and help identify areas for development.
The HPTI assessment assesses whether candidates are self-motivated and highly driven individuals. It helps employers find out how you can deal with risk and confrontation and is also known as a personality test.
The TEIque assessment measures 15 emotional traits of applicants to test how they deal in a range of different work-related scenarios.
Each assessment has a specific purpose for assessing a candidate's skills and abilities in the armed forces. At the end of the assessment, candidates will be given a star ranking. The star ranking helps employers understand your key strengths and abilities as well as identifying areas for improvement.
It will also help recruiters shortlist top quality candidates during the early stages of recruitment - these are known as pre-employment tests.
Thomas International Assessments
To pass your assessment and score high star ratings, it is important to do your homework, practice tests and understand the format of each test. Being well prepared and building confidence is key.
Aptitude (GIA) Assessment
The Aptitude (GIA) Assessment is a type of speed test that examines how quickly you are able to learn, comprehend and retain information - a crucial skill in the armed forces. The assessment consists of 5 core sections which take 2-3 minutes to complete. Speed is the key here.
The test aims to measure a test taker's mental capacity so it is advised to practice tests beforehand to ensure you are quick enough and make good use of the time.
The assessment covers five sections which are:
1. Perceptual speed
3. Number speed and accuracy
4. Spatial visualisation
5. Word meaning
The perceptual speed test is a measurement of your ability to recognise inaccuracies in written and numerical diagrams as well as the ability to ignore irrelevant information and spot errors.
The Thomas International reasoning test assesses a candidate's ability to make inferences and extract key information in order to come to correct conclusions.
It measures your ability to retain information and solve problems. The test is similar to a verbal reasoning test which is a useful test to practice with.
Number speed and accuracy
Numeracy speed and accuracy tests, which are sometimes referred to as numerical reasoning tests, are a measurement of a test taker's mathematical skills and how they can perform calculations under time pressure. It helps an employer measure how well you can work with quantitative concepts needed in a variety of military roles.
Spatial visualisation, also known as a spatial reasoning test is a type of test that measures your ability to manipulate 2D and 3D objects in your mind. It requires mental visualisation and good general intelligence to work out how a shape might change if you manipulate or rotate it.
Spatial visualisation might be used to work out locations of troops or to follow visualisation instructions where technology might not be available.
This is a particularly challenging test as it's not a very common exercise people are given.
The Word Meaning test assesses knowledge and vocabulary and is similar to a verbal reasoning test.
You will be tested on the way you comprehend a text passage and your ability to identify words that have similar or opposite meanings - an important skill needed in the military or armed forces where a clear understanding of spoken or written instructions is required.
Behaviour (PPA) Assessment
The Behaviour (PPA) Assessment measures a candidate's behavioural preferences and personal style of communication. PPA stands for personal profile analysis and gives insight into a person's fears, motivators, values and behaviours.
The behavioural assessment uses four key profile factors:
The four skills are particularly important in the armed forces so demonstrating these qualities is very important.
Each test-taker is given an 8 minute assessment consisting of 24 questions. Individuals are asked to select an adjective that they feel describes them best and one which describes them the least.
Workplace Personality (HPTI) Assessment
The Workplace Personality (HPTI) assessment is a personality assessment. It takes 10 minutes to complete, consisting of 78 questions.
The purpose of HPTI is to provide comprehensive insight into your workplace personality such as your openness to change, if you thrive in a competitive environment and how you react to stressful situations. Similarities can be seen with other workplace tests such as situational judgement tests, which assess your responses in different workplace scenarios.
The Thomas Personality assessment is a self-report questionnaire. You must rate your level of agreement on a scale of 1-7 (1 meaning that you fully disagree to 7 meaning you fully agree).
Emotional Intelligence (TEIQue) Assessment
The emotional intelligence assessment (TEIQue) is a personality test that measures 15 emotional traits including well-being, emotionality, sociability and self-control.
A key thing to remember for this test is that there are no right or wrong answers. You will have 30 minutes to complete 153 questions. The test requires you to respond to different situations based on how strongly you agree or disagree.
It is a way for employers to measure your communication and relationship management skills. The complexity lies with responding to stress, conflicts, and other challenges involved in everyday situations in the armed forces.
The 15 emotional states you are measured on are:
6. Impulse Control
7. Stress Management
9. Emotion Perception
10. Emotion Expression
12. Adaptability Motivation
14. Social Awareness
15. Emotional Awareness
It can be useful to read up on these traits beforehand and be strategic with your choices when answering these questions.
Top five tips to Pass Your Thomas International
#1 Practice lots of tests
Thomas International assessments are not like typical exams which is why it's so important to practice lots of different types of aptitude tests. Identifying areas of weakness and improving your star rating is one way to stand out against other candidates.
Practicing lots of tests can often be the difference between being shortlisted or not.
#2 Understand the format of the Thomas International Assessment
As well as practicing lots of tests it's important to understand the format of the different assessments. Knowing how much time you have for each question and the different skills you are being tested on can give you an advantage and boost confidence when taking the official exams.
#3 If you get stuck, move on
Since you have a limited amount of time to take the tests, if you get stuck, it's really important to just guess an answer and move on. You cannot afford to assign more time to one question than another as each question's “score” or “value” are worth the same.
#4 Stay calm under pressure
Staying calm under pressure is an important skill. In armed forces and military roles, it can be the difference between life or death. Although exams are not quite the same, the element of time pressure gives employers an idea of how you cope with solving complex problems under pressure - so practice staying calm and composed using different methods.
#5 Don't be afraid to fail
The purpose of the Thomas International assessments is to identify strengths and weaknesses so there is no real way to "fail" the assessment. You either have strong cognitive skills or you do not.
Of course, practice tests can help improve areas you might be weak in but you shouldn't be afraid of bad performance in certain areas - employers will recognise each candidate can improve.
Everyone has strengths and weaknesses which is why the tests are important to employers.
Is the Thomas PPA test timed?
Yes, the Thomas PPA test is timed - you are given 8 minutes with approximately 20 seconds to answer each question. The test provides an accurate insight into how you might behave at work.
How are Thomas International tests scored?
The scoring is based on your aptitude, behaviour, personality and emotional intelligence which these tests assess.
At the end of the assessment, you will be given a star rating which can be used by your potential employer to understand your limitations and strengths. Top performers are likely to be shortlisted.
Are Thomas International tests difficult?
The tests are aimed to identify your strengths and weaknesses - they are not designed to catch you out but to help future employers figure out where your strengths lie and what you might need to improve on.
What do I need to complete my Thomas International Test?
In order to successfully complete the tests, it's important you have a good and stable internet connection, paper to do any workings out, a calculator (if allowed/ required) as well as plenty of practice to prepare yourself beforehand. Confidence and technique is key to scoring well.