How to Prepare for Aspiring Minds Computer Adaptive Test (AMCAT)?
Amazon is a quickly-growing company with more and more hiring events and employees signing up to work daily. Once an employee works for the company for a total of twelve consecutive months, they have the opportunity to sign up for a nine-month program called the ATA (Amazon Technical Academy) and become software development engineers.
The AMCAT, or the Aspiring Minds Computer Adaptive Test, is one of the pre-employment tests administered to these applicants.
Other companies use this test before hiring potential employees because it provides a broad reflection of the candidate’s skills and abilities.
If you are thinking about applying online to a company that uses the AMCAT, you’re in the right place! This guide explains everything you need to know about the Aspiring Minds Assessment.
Keep reading to find out what’s on the exam:
Table of Contents
What Does the AMCAT Look Like?
The Aspiring Minds Assessment asks 24 multiple-choice questions over a period of 35 minutes. The questions vary per test and per person, but the three sections of the test stay the same.
Those three sections include:
- Logical Ability
- Quantitative Ability
- Verbal Ability
The score revolves around the number of questions you answer correctly and the difficulty of said questions. The test also generates questions as you take it. This means the test could ask you a lot of questions related to logical ability and if you answer those correctly, it will generate more difficult logical ability questions for you to answer.
If you answer these questions incorrectly, the test might refrain from asking difficult questions about logical ability because it detects that is a weak spot for you.
If you answer a lot of questions with wrong answers, the test will start asking you easier questions. It gauges your understanding of these three sections.
Let’s look more into what each section looks like:
This section measures your ability to read, follow directions and respond accordingly. You need to demonstrate your ability to follow the rules so your potential employer knows to hire you.
If you do not show any kind of logical ability, the potential employer won’t think you are the best asset to add to the team. You need to be able to follow directions and make good choices based on the information given to you.
The AMCAT asks these questions in different ways than other pre-employment exams and focuses mostly on questions with symbols. You might need to demonstrate your ability to understand word problems and how the patterns fit into given information.
Before asking a question, the AMCAT provides you with a set of data. This could range from patterns between symbols, letters, or groups. After you read and digest this data, the question asks you which conclusion best fits the data.
The answers could include a ‘neither’ or ‘both’ option. The ‘neither’ answer arises when the question does not include enough information for the test-taker to make an educated decision.
If you think the answer to a question is neither, make sure you read and reread the question thoroughly and plug in the answers before deciding there is not enough information to answer the problem.
The ‘both’ answer arises when all the information applies to the equation. If you suspect this is the answer, read, reread, and double-check your work.
If you are not sure if you have the correct answer to the question, take notes based on the given information and look for conclusions in the data. Working backward can help you narrow down your answer to select the correct choice.
The quantitative ability is similar to the sections on other pre-employment tests, but this version has more difficult questions. This section determines your ability to solve numerical problems and equations and determine numerical patterns based on given data.
The more correct answers you provide to difficult questions about numerical values, the higher your score will be in this section. The more correct answers to easier questions you provide, the lower your score will be in this section.
To practice and ace this part of the exam, make sure to review PEMDAS, ratios, percentages, patterns, mathematical rules, and probability. Practicing word problems teach you how to understand and answer them quickly and effectively.
If you do not know the correct answer to a question, try to work backward and plug-in information. When you get stuck, plugging in answers to given equations can help you solve the problem and learn to be resourceful in a time-constraint.
Since you will have to listen, speak to others, and communicate with strangers on the job, you need to demonstrate your verbal ability skills to your potential employer.
You spend a majority of your job hearing and digesting information, so if you tend to ignore directions or find yourself not paying attention, you will run into trouble when tasked with important work.
Most of these verbal ability questions give you a chunk of text to read, comprehend, and answer questions about. To pass this portion of the exam, make sure you read carefully and take note of all the important information given.
You will want to hurry and finish the test, but reading too quickly can cause you to lose focus and gloss over important details. Accuracy is crucial to answering the question correctly and passing the exam.
To ensure success on this portion of the test, practice reading texts and quizzing yourself on that information. If you get stuck, read the answers and look for ways the given answers could fit the passage.
Verbal ability questions range from topics on vocabulary, paragraph creation, reading comprehension, and grammatical knowledge.
You need to show you understand the English language and how the different functions of sentences work. You also need to understand how grammar operates and familiarize yourself with common grammatical rules.
A good way to increase your vocabulary knowledge and learn grammatical rules is to read dictionaries, thesauruses, and more books. When you introduce yourself to more content that uses these rules, you will notice when something does not look correct.
For example, if you do not know how commas operate, reading literature frequently will open your eyes to different rules of commas. You will see how and when they apply to everyday language and you will improve your writing skills.
Dictionaries and thesauruses have slews of words with different definitions and words that look the same but mean different things or vice versa. When you study these books and then apply that knowledge to fiction or non-fiction books, you will understand the meaning of more words and rely less on context clues.
When you apply this knowledge to the AMCAT, you won’t spend as much time answering questions or struggling to make an educated guess.
The best way to accurately prepare is to take simulation practice exams.
The test prep company Job Test Prep has prepared a guide to help candidates prepare for and pass the Aspiring Minds Assessment and further their careers. The prep pack includes a practice test equipped with 24 questions, the same amount as the real test, plus 25 extra practice tests for you to double down and sharpen your test-taking skills.
These study guide creators spend years researching and reading about the AMCAT. They base their guides on real questions used on the previous tests, and they cater the prep guides to those taking the test. Each guide explains how the questions operate, how to best answer them, and what to do if you can not figure out the answer.
The study guide questions will be similar to questions on the AMCAT, but you won’t run into the same questions on the real test. Although practicing similar question types does increase your chances of acing the exam.
Practicing with these tests teaches you how to best answer the questions because of the explanation guides included with the prep pack. Once you take a practice test, the guide explains why you answered a question correctly or incorrectly.
This section breaks down the right way to answer questions, how to read the questions, and how to prevent yourself from getting stuck over tricky wording.
Three plans exist for this prep:
- A one-week session for $39, including a money-back guarantee and an agent available for 24/7 help
- A one-month session for $49, including a money-back guarantee and an agent available for 24/7 help
- A three-month session for $59, including a money-back guarantee and an agent available for 24/7 help
Additional AMCAT Information
Users take the Aspiring Minds Computer Adaptive Test via computer, so it helps to familiarize yourself with taking tests on computers before you sign up for the actual test.
As mentioned above, this exam asks much more difficult questions than other pre-employment exams, ones that require thought and time. However, since you have limited time, you need to learn how to best budget your time.
Practice with Job Test Prep’s study guides and mock tests before enrolling in the real exam. Practicing these tests online cut down time spent struggling to answer all of the questions in the allotted time.
With the practice exams, you will figure out which kinds of questions you need to spend more time with and the ones that come the easiest to you. Dedicate a set amount of hours for studying per week to ace the test and move on to your dream career.
24 questions in 35 minutes boils down to around 1.5 minutes per question. That seems fair when looking at the numbers, but based on your test performance, you might spend twenty seconds on the first few problems and need two minutes on others.
You really have to learn how to manage your time before you take this exam. Cutting down excess time that could be spent on solving the questions is crucial to success. Especially if you answer the questions correctly because that means more difficult questions will pop up.
While Taking the Test
If you tend to use a pencil and paper to help your test-taking process, feel free to bring some to the exam, but leave the calculators at home.
Take your time, but not too much time on each question, as you have limited time to complete the test. If you get stuck on a question, circle it and come back to it after you have answered all of the other questions.
Take note of any keywords in word problems. Language such as always, never, sometimes, and maybe can confuse test-takers speeding through the test. Circle these words and triple-check your work before selecting your answer.
Pass the AMCAT Today
Used by several employers, The Aspiring Minds Assessment gauges the right fit for their companies because it asks questions based on three categories utilized daily in business: logical ability, quantitative ability, and verbal ability. With new online resources, preparing couldn’t be easier.
Now that you know what the AMCAT looks like, when will you take yours?
- Amazon Assessment Test
- How To Maximize Your Chances Of Getting A Job At Amazon
- How to Get a Job at Amazon
Sarah is an accomplished educator, researcher and author in the field of testing and assessment. She has worked with various educational institutions and organisations to develop innovative evaluation methods and enhance student learning. Sarah has published numerous articles and books on assessment and learning. Her passion for promoting equity and fairness in the education system fuels her commitment to sharing insights and best practices with educators and policymakers around the world.