Basic Comprehension Tests

Most job roles require a foundation level of the English language and a basic verbal skill set. This includes, but is not limited to, operational, customer service, administration, help desk and commercial.

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What are basic comprehension tests?

Basic comprehension tests are foundation level verbal reasoning tests aimed at assessing your English language and comprehension skills. It’s so easy to forget some of the basic verbal and comprehension principles that we once learnt. With this in mind we have put together this test pack to help you refresh your skills and improve your performance.

If your English is a bit rusty, a little bit of practice can really help you improve your skills.

What skills do basic comprehension tests assess?

In order to demonstrate a basic education and intelligence, many companies request applicants to pass a comprehension test.
These tests can vary in content and style but will ultimately assess your comprehension of a passage of information and your ability to analyse a number of answers and choose the most suitable one.

Our practice test have been designed to help you refresh your comprehension skills so that you can be successful.

What is the basic comprehension test format?

A basic comprehension test is one of the most commonly used psychometric tests.

The English required is generally secondary school level (for age 16). You will typically have between 45 seconds and 2 minutes to answer each questions and so you will need to be well practiced and efficient.

These questions will require you to demonstrate basic language concepts such as vocabulary, spelling, word association, idioms and metaphors.

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Verbal reasoning test tips

1One question = one minute rule

Make sure you understand how many questions you will have to answer and how long you have to complete the test. Usually, verbal reasoning tests consist of 15 to 20 questions and don’t last longer than 15 – 20 minutes. Also note that while some tests have a number of questions per passage of prose, others have a new one for each.

2Go with the flow, and if there is no flow - go anyway

Don’t get stuck with one question because easier may follow. It’s as important to stick to timings, as to get a right answer. Some assessments allow you to go back and review/amend answers at the end. If you finish early go back and review the answers to the questions you flagged earlier.

3Learn from your mistakes

Focus on reviewing the questions you get wrong at the end of each verbal reasoning test. Review the solutions and try to understand why you have chosen the answer wrong. You will learn more from your errors than from those answers which you got correct. After all, to think critically, also means scrutinizing your own thoughts.

4Practice under exam conditions

This means completing practice tests in one sitting and to time. Do not practice in an environment where you are easily distracted and not fully engaged. This will maximise the efficiency of your preparation time and help you to accurately track progress that you have made.

5Be competitive

Try to measure your achievements against other users in order to make sure you stand out in a crowd. The average results might help get to the next stage, but might not be enough to get the job. Preparation times can often be as stressful as the actual assessment centers. It’s no surprise that no one enjoys spending time preparing for them, but think of this as an opportunity to get really well prepared and differentiate yourself from the competition.

Verbal reasoning video tutorials

Word Swap

2 mins

True, False, Cannot Say

2 mins


3 mins

Find the New Word

2 mins

English Language

2 mins


2 mins

Practice basic comprehension tests

There’s a reason they say practice makes perfect. That phrase holds true when it comes to basic comprehension tests. In fact, practice is perhaps even more important if you’re pretty new to these tests.

But don’t worry, we have all the tools you need to get started. Begin by trying some basic comprehension questions, viewing the explanations and seeing your scores improve.

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