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shl verbal reasoning

SHL Style Verbal Reasoning Tests

  • 35 tests
  • 544 questions
shl verbal reasoning

SHL’s verbal tests are used by many employers as part of their recruitment process. The tests allow the employer to assess a candidate’s aptitude for comprehension, understanding and evaluation of written passages, and compare that score to those of other applicants.

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Free example SHL style verbal questions

We recommend you start with our free SHL style verbal practice tests and questions. Each example practice question includes one passage and then multiple questions relating to that same passage.

Answers and explanations follow beneath the questions.

Verbal critical reasoning

shl verbal reasoning practice test

Statement: The passage suggests that it is safer to spread your savings across a range of different investments.

  • A) True
  • B) False
  • C) Cannot say

Reading comprehension

shl verbal reasoning practice test

If more tourists come to this country, it will mean:

  • A) Fewer jobs in some restaurants
  • B) Fewer people wanting fast food
  • C) More jobs in many hotels
  • D) The government doesn’t worry about job creation

Word analogy

shl verbal reasoning practice test

Which of the following would best replace the word ‘outstanding’ in sentence 3?

  • A) Remaining
  • B) Superb
  • C) Multiple
  • D) Supportive

Answers

Verbal critical reasoning: True – the third sentence explains that the very rich have been diversifying their portfolios to reduce the risk of sudden changes in share prices.

Reading comprehension: The second paragraph talks about the fact that if more tourists are encouraged to come to this country it will translate into more business for hotels and this will result in more jobs (‘Just think of the new jobs this will generate!’). This makes C) the only correct response.

Word analogy: The use of the word ‘outstanding’ suggests that customer service has to be really great. Option B – superb – is the best word to replace outstanding in this case.

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Are SHL verbal tests difficult?

SHL verbal tests are not difficult once you are familiar with the format, and are confident assessing whether the question bears any relation or relevance to the contents of the passage of text. SHL verbal tests are pitched at an appropriate level for the job applied for – a graduate role will be harder than an apprentice level role, for example.

How are SHL verbal tests scored?

SHL verbal tests are scored by awarding one mark per correct answer. There is no pass mark as such, as it will depend on the scores of the other candidates also interviewing for the same role. Candidates should aim to be in the top 20% of scores to succeed, which at a graduate assessment centre is likely to mean scoring 27 or higher out of 30.

How long is an SHL verbal test?

An SHL verbal test will take between 17 and 19 minutes to complete and you will need to answer 30 questions.

What if English isn’t my first language?

If English is your second language, you will find an SHL verbal test harder. You will need to practice more, concentrating as much effort on practising reading different publications about different subjects, as much as you practice set format tests.

Where can I practice verbal reasoning tests?

You can practice verbal reasoning tests using our free practice tests and example questions. You can also find our entire suite of practice questions here.

How can I improve my verbal reasoning?

We recommend finding as many practice questions and answers as you can, and familiarising yourself as much as possible with different written passages and styles of questions. Once you have a good idea of what to expect and how to answer the types of questions posed, you will be able to practice answering the questions faster.

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SHL Style Verbal Reasoning Tests Tips

1Practice

This is always our number one tip, as we know that candidates who have spent time preparing and practising – and are familiar with the style and format of the SHL verbal test – will perform better than those who don’t.

2Keep an eye on the time

When you take the test, it’s no good getting all the answers right if you don’t finish the test, as you will automatically get no score for the answers you don’t complete. Make sure that you keep practising to a timer, and that when you sit the test, you keep to the time you’ve allocated per question (just over 30 seconds per question).

3Read

Read widely and about subjects outside of your area of interest, so that you are used to reading unfamiliar text. Turn reading into more practice by identifying themes and concepts; try explaining what you have read to someone else.

4Understand where you go wrong

When assessing the answers to your practice tests, try to understand whether your issue is in inaccurately reading the passage or question (e.g. skim reading), making assumptions or perhaps introducing additional knowledge. Take time to eliminate each of these errors.

5Be prepared

Make sure you know where you are taking the test and that your brain is in the right state. Sounds obvious, but ensure you’ve had sleep and are not thirsty, as both of these can affect your ability to read and think under pressure.

Verbal Reasoning Video Tutorials

SHL Tests: A Guide

5 mins

English Language

2 mins

Analogies

2 mins

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Reviews of our Verbal Reasoning tests

What our customers say about our Verbal Reasoning tests

  • United Kingdom

    September 06, 2022

    Very interesting passages as a first test, I will definitely be practicing more!!

    Enjoyed the test, it's good to have it timed to gather how much time you have to read the text passages to answer the questions and to work according to the clock.

  • South Africa

    September 02, 2022

    Attention to detail

    I learned that details about a specific subject can be phrased in different ways and have different implications I also learned that reading through lines is important

  • Australia

    September 01, 2022

    good

    the test is very good and tests different aspects of the aptitude of an individual. It has a good set of questions and tests the limit of the individual.

  • United Kingdom

    August 31, 2022

    a bit nerve wracking

    The text was well laid out and easy to read but allowed me to really test my ability to understand what had been written.

  • Nigeria

    August 26, 2022

    Greatly motivational

    This is just what I need to prepare myself for my forthcoming examination. Very detailed and helpful.

  • South Africa

    August 26, 2022

    Importance of understanding the contest

    The test was a bit challenging but it shows the importance of reading the Question & scenario carefully before answering each question.

  • Pakistan

    August 25, 2022

    It was difficult

    It was all about history kind of stuff it was difficult but i am trying so looking forward to taking more tests and hoping that they are less difficult

  • India

    August 25, 2022

    good

    The test was very good and will help in the preparation for the verbal ability test. It provided sample questions and it was a timed test. Timed tests are always better for practice than untimed tests. Verbal phrases were very informative however one needs to search deeply for answering the ques

  • United Kingdom

    August 23, 2022

    Average/Wordy

    The descriptions were slightly wordy however most of the answers were in the descriptions... It was manageable for a first-timer

  • Sweden

    August 22, 2022

    Hard but great

    I believe the questions were a bit too long although they were written very well and the model of the answers (A, B or C) was very easy to use