What is an Aptitude Test?
This is an evaluation created to ascertain future learning or mastery of skill if the right sets of instructions are given. For instance, high school students may be given aptitude tests to find out which category of careers might be good for them.
Throughout school, students will come across a wide range of aptitude tests as they try to decide what they might be inclined to study in college or take up as a career. Typically, high school students take a number of aptitude tests that are intended to help them decide what they might want to study in college or which career would suit them the best.
Often, aptitude tests give students a general idea of what might trigger their interest or could be a good future career. For instance, if Jill’s aptitude test result suggests that she’s good with data and numbers, it might indicate that she’s likely to thrive in a career as a banker, an accountant, or a stockbroker. Since all these career options would be good for Jill, she can take her pick based on what she prefers.
Unlike achievement tests, which look at a student’s level of skill or knowledge at any given point, aptitude tests focus on determining how competent a student might be in performing a particular task.
For elementary school students, such tests are usually used to determine students’ fitness for special programs, such as special education or classes for the gifted and talented. For instance, these students can take the MLAT (Modern Language Aptitude Test) for foreign language talent.
For middle school students, aptitude tests can be taken to qualify for special or gifted education programs, just like elementary students. These students may also take such tests to identify their career aptitudes. One test they can take is the Differential Aptitude Test that examines students on numerical ability, verbal reasoning, mechanical reasoning, abstract reasoning, clerical accuracy and speed, language usage, spelling, and space relations. Another test worth considering for middle school students is the OASIS (Occupational Aptitude Survey and Interest Schedule) test.
High school students can take OASIS and other aptitude tests to decide career interests and potential career paths for post-secondary education. For instance, the ASVAB (Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery) can be taken by those having an inclination towards the armed services. Students studying in grades 7 to 12 may also take the DAT (Differential Aptitude Test) and BMCT (Bennett Mechanical Comprehension Test).
Aptitude tests are important for students. For one, they help reveal their strengths and weaknesses, thus offering a better understanding of their personality. Such tests may also draw attention to their hidden talents, which can be nurtured further or considered a career. Students who’re unsure about their future career choices can get ideas and options after analyzing their test results. Often, the results may reveal or indicate options they hadn’t even considered before. Thus, aptitude tests help align the students’ skills and aptitudes to increase their chances of success in their chosen domain of study or career.