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shl verbal reasoning

SHL Style Verbal Reasoning Tests

  • 30 tests
  • 450 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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SHL Style Verbal Reasoning Tests FAQs

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

  • Kenya

    February 03, 2023

    have information fast hand

    questions are very challenging and indirect in a sense that if you are carefull you end up missing all the questions.

  • Nigeria

    February 02, 2023

    Great Reading Test

    I enjoyed the pressure imposed by the test.having to read and answer the number of questions within the set time is interesting

  • Kenya

    January 29, 2023

    It is a true reflection of what we meet in the written tests in the interview room

    Overall, I found the test to be challenging but fair. The questions covered a wide range of vocabulary, from basic words to more advanced terms. This provided a comprehensive assessment of my vocabulary skills. Additionally, the test format allowed for the assessment of language

  • Brazil

    January 29, 2023

    Skimming is key!

    The time is tricky, so be aware that it's more important to be agile with the skimming and a trial-and-error approach to answering the questions correctly.

  • United Kingdom

    January 29, 2023

    Suitably complex text

    The texts were suitably complex enough to really get you thinking. I would say the time limit was too generous however.

  • United States of America

    January 29, 2023

    easy instructions

    I liked that the test had easy instructions and challenged you to read over a passage multiple times for certain questions to see if you missed anything.

  • Brazil

    January 28, 2023

    Read the question first and do a fast scanning reading of the passage

    I liked the accuracy of the test: this is what you'd see on a real test, but I didn't like the short amount of time to answer (which is typical and nothing to be changed).

  • Kenya

    January 28, 2023

    verbal reasoning test 1

    the first test was a bit tense because i thought I was using a lot of time to scan through the text, but after the clock read 10 minutes, I knew I was in the right course to complete the test

  • India

    January 26, 2023

    Good, Keep Going

    There is no like or dislike about the test. Since it is a Verbal Reasoning test, I think it is doing the job.

  • Nigeria

    January 25, 2023

    My first test

    It's very tricky and I'm gradually learning how to pick up every detail provided and be extremely careful in my choices of answers