Thomas General Intelligence Assessment (GIA) : Practice Questions and Preparation Guide
Taking the Thomas General Intelligence Assessment can be daunting, especially if you haven’t taken many tests lately. What will be on the test? Is it difficult? How do you prepare?
The Thomas General Assessment is actually used by many companies around the world. And it can be the deciding factor on whether or not you get the job you want.
Given that the test plays such an important part in deciding an applicant’s career prospects, the person facing the test needs to prepare thoroughly. This guide will take you through all you need to know about passing the Thomas General Intelligence Assessment.
Table of Contents
What Is the Thomas International General Assessment (GIA)?
The Thomas International General Assessment test is used by many employers to test an applicant’s suitability for a role in their company. It is also used if an employee is being considered for a new role in the company.
Used by 32,000 companies worldwide, people seeking employment or career progression can expect to come across the test at some point.
The test assesses a current or future employee’s ability in problem-solving, retaining and processing information, and identifying patterns.
With the test results in front of him, the employer feels better qualified to decide on whether he will employ someone new or promote a current employee.
How Do I Prepare for the GIA Test?
Preparing for any test requires that you:
- Become familiar with the test
- Equip yourself with the necessary preparation tools
Becoming familiar with the test, if this is your first time taking it, presents its own challenges. There is a lot of confusing information online and in workplace conversations. We recommend you rely on the services of a reliable test preparation company like Job Test Prep.
They have specific preparation packs for the Thomas International General Assessment that could help you with what could be a pivotal moment in your career.
They will provide you with the information you need as well as a test preparation pack containing sample tests to guide your preparation.
What Exactly Is Being Tested in the GIA?
Essentially the test is assessing if you have the skills needed to adapt to and progress in a particular role. For a great many candidates the difficulty lies in the test’s seeming simplicity.
None of the questions approach the difficulty level of tests you have performed throughout your education. Yet performing the test within the given time constraints forces you to draw heavily on your powers of concentration.
The fact that the test has two distinct sections, also adds to the test’s difficulty. The first section involves you committing the instructions to memory. The second section involves you drawing on the remembered material to answer questions. This puts obvious pressure on your short-term memory.
Suddenly 40 minutes doing a test takes on a more challenging aspect.
How Long Does the GIA Test Take?
A 40-minute test.
- The first 20 minutes are spent reading and committing instructions to memory
- The following 20 minutes are devoted to doing questions on that remembered material
Remember that a 40-minute test can still be very challenging. Don’t allow the short time span to lull you into a false sense of security.
The test’s very shortness is what makes it challenging. Add to that the fact that you can’t progress to the next question until you have answered the one you are currently on and you can see that speed is of the essence.
That, of course, is one of the skills being tested. The person who requires you to do the test wants to discover how quickly and accurately you can respond when under time pressure.
The test is unlike a lot of other tests you may have taken in your search for employment. It doesn’t test information you may have absorbed already in school or on a course.
Instead, it tests how well you are able to use your abilities to solve problems and reach answers within a set timeframe.
How Many Questions Are on the GIA Test?
The number of questions on the Thomas GIA Test can vary from anywhere between 130 and 160.
What Are the Sections of the Test?
The test assesses your abilities under the following headings:
- Perceptual Speed
- Word Meaning
- Number Accuracy and Speed
- Spatial Visualisation
Reasoning tests assess your logic, short-term memory and problem-solving skills. You can expect to be presented with a series of short sentences and retain the information you get from them. With this information, you are expected to answer short questions in the second section.
For example, you might read sentences such as:
Hannah is taller than Jane.
Barcelona is closer to Berlin than San Francisco.
Questions on the following page:
1. Who is smaller?
2. Which is closer to Berlin?
b) San Francisco
Jane– Hannah is taller, therefore Jane is smaller.
Barcelona– Barcelona is closer to Berlin, San Francisco is further
The Perceptual Speed section tests your accuracy and attention to detail while under pressure. Although these questions are simple, it is very easy to be mistaken, especially when trying to answer quickly, so concentration and a calm head are required.
The questions will provide pairs of letters, in both upper-case and lower-case, and you will have to say how many matching pairs of letters there are in the group.
Look at the letters below. For each group, determine how many pairs of letters there are:
b n j q
B U T Q
t y e w
T Y u E
There are 2 pairs of letters – B and Q
There are 3 pairs of letters – T, Y and E
The word meaning section will primarily examine your vocabulary and comprehension. It will assess how well you understand different words, by testing you to find the odd word out. The questions will involve a set of words, and you will have to pick the odd one out.
1. Choose the word that doesn’t relate to the others:
2. Choose the word that doesn’t relate to the others:
- Square– They are all shapes, but a square is not round, like the other two.
- Knee– Although they are all joints, the shoulder and wrist are joints in the arms.
Number Accuracy and Speed
The number, speed, and accuracy section will test your aptitude for numbers and your ability to handle quantitative data. It won’t be complicated maths questions like you might see in some other tests, but it will test that you are comfortable working with numbers.
The questions will involve a set of three numbers, and you will need to find the number that differs most from the middle number.
For each set of three numbers, find the number that is furthest from the middle number:
5, 19, 37
12, 300, 574
- 37 – There is a gap of 14 between 5 and 19, or a gap of 18 between 37 and 19.
- 12 – There is a gap of 288 between 12 and 300, or a gap of 274 between 300 and 574.
To get a further idea of how the test works and of how the company can help with accurate test preparation, try this free sample test from JobTest Prep.
Doing the sample test will give you an idea of the challenges you face and of the importance of doing further sample exercises.
Expected to be tested on your ability:
- To solve problems
- To be accurate when working at speed
Congratulate yourself for being in a position where you have to take the test. The employer will discover from your scores if you have hidden potential that could be used in the company.
The spatial visualisation & reasoning section assesses the candidate’s ability to visualise objects and mentally manipulate them.
It is a straightforward test that doesn’t require special knowledge, but practising will help you get used to how to answer these questions and warm up your brain so that you are ready for them, which is especially useful given the time constraints.
The questions will involve showing a box containing two shapes in different positions. You will need to examine the images and determine whether they are the same shape that has simply been rotated, or if they are different shapes, which can include mirror images.
These questions will require you to visualise the shapes and mentally rotate them, to see whether or not they fit together.
How many pairs are the same?
a) 1 – The first pair are the same but rotated at different angles, whereas the second pair is rotated but also a mirror reflection, which means they are not the same.
How Do I Pass the GIA Test?
With so much at stake, an organised approach to preparation is essential. Try taking the following steps to ensure you do well:
- Clarify how many days or weeks you have left to prepare in
- Don’t count the day before the test into your preparation time. You will use that day to review things you may be uncertain about and to rest and relax in preparation for doing the test
- Set up a timetable. Select times you are going to devote to preparation for each of the days set aside. Writing up your timetable and putting it where it will catch your eye will hold you accountable for getting the work done
Use your test prep pack
The sample tests in your test prep pack from JobTest Prep should form the backbone of every preparation period.
Using them will:
- Give a structure to every prep session and ensure you are using your time well
- Give you continued practice on tests that mirror the real assessment
- Allow you to monitor your progress from test to test
- Give you a clear idea of areas you are having difficulty will ensure you pay particular attention to those areas
- Train you in the timing of the test. Getting everything done within the set time will prove challenging. However, by doing test after test you will hone your skills in this area.
Your physical health is part of your arsenal
Preparing for a test many of us forget about the part our physical wellness plays in our performance. While preparing for the test, taking care of your well-being is important.
Ensure you get:
- Both rest and relaxation
- Regular breaks. Try walking away from your place of study after every 50 minutes of preparation. Your brain will work better when you get back to the preparation after a 10-minute break
- Healthy nutrition
- Fresh air
Doing the Test
Don’t underestimate the pressure you will be under when doing the test. Having done your preparation, the test should not present you with any unforeseen challenges.
However, the pressure of working within the time confines will still be there.
You will be up against the clock and under a lot of pressure. That’s when people tend to misjudge, rush, miss key details and make small errors.
To avoid having this happen make sure you approach the test well-rested and in a calm state of mind. If breathing exercises work for you, try some deep breathing before commencing the test. You might also find it helpful to take a short walk to increase your alertness.
Remind yourself you have done the work, are already familiar with the test, and deserve to do well.
Are you doing The Thomas International General Assessment? For resources to help you prepare click here.
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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.