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What Are the EPSO Tests? 

The EPSO tests are a combination of aptitude and psychometric tests that every single applicant to EU institutions must pass in order to progress to a further level of testing at the EPSO assessment centre. In general terms there are two main levels of EPSO tests, the assistant level of tests, known as EPSO AST tests and administrator tests, EPSO AD tests. In both the AST and AD level there are two stages in the selection procedure, the first of which is the computer-based admission test (CBT) which will be followed by further tests and assessments at the assessment centre. Only those who passed the CBT tests advance to the assessment phase. The EPSO tests are held in specific locations of which there are many situated throughout Europe.

The stages of the application are:

EPSO Test, EU Test Selection Process


The Different EPSO Tests in the First Phase of Applications

Listed below are the possible tests you can take depending on the position you are applying for. After you have made a formal application to EPSO, if it is good enough you will be invited to attend the computer based testing session. This session is not reimbursed so it is highly recommended that you get EPSO test preparation materials ensuring you are ready for this day when it arrives. There are many different testing centres around Europe and you will not be required to travel to Brussels or Luxembourg. However, in the second stage of assessment, at the assessment centre you will need to travel.

 

AST Levels 1-16 ASTSC1-2 ASTSC3-6 CAST AD Levels 1-16 Linguists and Translators (AD Level)
Numerical Reasoning AST Numerical Reasoning   AST Numerical Reasoning Epso Tests per level Epso Tests per level Epso Tests per level
Verbal Reasoning Epso Tests per level Epso Tests per level Epso Tests per level Epso Tests per level Epso Tests per level Epso Tests per level
Abstract Reasoning Epso Tests per level   Epso Tests per level Epso Tests per level Epso Tests per level Epso Tests per level
Situational Judgement Epso Tests per level Epso Tests per level Epso Tests per level Epso Tests per level Epso Tests per level Epso Tests per level
Accuracy & Precision Accuracy and Precision Test Epso Tests per level EPSO A&P     EPSO A&P

Prioritising & Organising

Epso Tests per level Epso Tests per level Epso Tests per level      
Language/ Translation/ Computer Literacy   Epso Tests per level   Epso Tests per level   Epso Tests per level

Note - the verbal, numerical, and abstract reasoning section will be tested in your main language, which must be one of the official EU languages. Situational judgement and professional skills test will be assessed in your second language, which must be English, French or German.


EPSO Application Form

The first stage of your application to the EU requires you to complete the EPSO online application form. In this application form you need to include all of the relevant experience that you have that pertains to the position you are applying for. This is an important section as for almost all positions in the EU you need to have a degree of work experience to even start your application. As well as this you need to complete or upload the latest copy of your CV.


Questions on the Application Form

Part of the application form requires you to complete a number of questions that centre on four motivations and strengths: Experience and background; Interests in applying; Contributions to the EU; and Strengths. There are questions on each of these sections.

Example questions include:

  • How is your education and experience relevant to this particular profile?
  • Why have you decided to apply to the European Institutions?
  • Why does this particular profile interest you?
  • What specific contribution could you make to the work of the EU institutions?
  • In which role could you best contribute?
  • What particular strengths would you bring to your work?
  • Outline two of your main achievements. Describe the process you went through and their positive outcomes for you and others.
  • What particular strengths do you bring to your work?
  • Please outline two of your main achievements. Describe the process.
  • Please describe a time when you led a team.

In order to answer these questions in the best possible way it is very important that you understand what your EPSO application requires of you. You have to carefully read the job profile as this contains valuable information you can use to craft your answers. On this you will find the key competencies involved in the position that you are applying for. Once you know these, you have to demonstrate through your answers that you possess these skills and have demonstrated them in the past in real life experiences.

Answering these questions is difficult and time consuming. Try to use the STAR method of answering questions as this gives a complete impression of yourself through means of a real instance that occurred in your life. If you impress the assessors you will be invited to attend a CBT session.

The CBT isn’t performed over the internet in the comfort of your own home. Rather, you will be invited to one of the many EPSO testing centres in your country of origin. Unfortunately, your expenses are not paid for at this stage of the application. Therefore make sure you make it count. If you come through the EPSO CBT you will be invited to attend the assessment centre in either Brussels or Luxembourg. This stage will be reimbursed.


Preparing for the EPSO AD Tests

In order to be invited to take the EPSO administrator computer based tests you have to impress through your application form. This application form is very important as it gives you a foot in the door. All the more so if you are applying to a competition with only a small number of places as this is used as a further screening step. You need to include relevant experience to the position you are applying for. Moreover, you need to either complete an online CV or upload your CV including your most recent positions.

What are the EPSO Administrator Tests?

Verbal Reasoning

On this EPSO AD test you have 35 minutes to answer 20 questions. This test is taken in your first language. You are presented with passages based on various subjects including economics, geography and political subjects among others. You have to answer questions relating to the texts that are based on best choice. What this means is that you have to select the answer option that is most correct in regards to the passage. Learn more about this test on our dedicated EPSO verbal reasoning page.


Numerical Reasoning

This EPSO administrator test contains 10 questions, all to be answered within the 20 minute time limit. You will be presented with a table of complex information which you have to use to answer the multiple-choice questions. In general terms, the questions test your ability to work with percentages and ratios as well as the four basic functions. Learn more about this test on our dedicated EPSO numerical reasoning page.


Abstract Reasoning

In this test there are 10 questions that you need to answer within 10 minutes. You are presented with a sequence of five images that have a particular logical relationship between them. It is your task to identify this pattern and select the correct option from the different answer choices. Learn more about these tests on our dedicated EPSO abstract reasoning page.


Situational Judgement Test

This test presents you with different work based situations and options on how you would deal with the issue at hand. There are 20 different scenarios that you have to work through in the 30 minute time limit. You have to select two options from the different choices available; one that you are most likely to do and another that you are least likely to do. Learn more about SJTs and how best to answer the questions on our dedicated SJT page.


What is the Recruitment Process for Assistant Level Competitions?

Similar to the AD level tests, there are a number of different EU tests and assessments that you need to come through to be entered into the final pool of applicants. The tests are outlined below. If you are applying for AST levels 1-3 you will most likely take these tests at the EPSO assessment centre. 

It is important to bear in mind that of the different tests, the EPSO numerical, verbal and abstract reasoning tests will be administered in your first language. The other tests will be in your second language.

The different aptitude tests are:


AST Numerical Reasoning Test

On this EPSO assistant level test you have 20 minutes to answer 10 questions. You are presented with an often complex table that has different pieces of related information. Based on the table, you have to answer the questions by selecting the correct answer from either four or five different options. Learn more about the EPSO numerical reasoning tests.


AST Verbal Reasoning Test

On this test, as in the EPSO numerical reasoning test you have 35 minutes to answer 20 questions. You have to read and analyse a passage of information that is often related to European matters, but can also include passages on various other topics. In order to answer correctly, you need to pay close attention to the text and the different answer options as they are often exaggerated and therefore incorrect. Learn more about these tests on our dedicated EPSO verbal reasoning page.


Abstract Reasoning Test

On this test test you have 10 questions to answer within 10 minutes. You are presented with a sequence of diagrams or matrices that have a particular pattern of logic running through the entire sequence. You have to identify this pattern and select the correct option from a number of different answer choices. This test is administered in your first language. Learn more about these tests on our dedicated EPSO abstract reasoning page.


Situational Judgement Test

On this EPSO AST test you have to answer 20 questions that relate to eight different competencies. For each question you are given a passage which presents you with a situation relating to the position you are applying for. This is a situation that could crop up anytime at work and there are four different options available to you to choose from. Your task is to select two options, one that you are most likely to do and another that you are least likely to do. Learn more about SJTs and how best to answer the questions on our dedicated SJT page.


Accuracy and Precision Test

On this test you have six minutes to answer 40 questions. This test examines both your accuracy and precision in spotting mistakes from a table as well as your ability to work very quickly. You are presented with a main table and an extract from it. You have to find the discrepancies between the two. Learn more about this test on the EPSO accuracy and precision test page.


Prioritising and Organising Test

This test has 24 questions that you have to answer within the 30 minute time limit. In this test you will be presented with a table of different information that you have to use to answer a variety of questions. Most of the questions involve some rudimentary maths skills as well as some fact finding and logical thinking skills. Learn more about this test on the EPSO prioritising and organising test page.


Other EPSO Tests

There are some other tests in the CBT as well and these depend on the position you have applied for. These range from knowing how to use different programs correctly, translation of different documents and other office skills such as answering the telephone in the correct manner and document handling.


Passing the EPSO Tests

Each of the above EU tests has a different pass mark. Although 50% is the required mark in practice this isn’t really the case. Since there is such high competition for places, candidates who score less than approximately 80% will not be invited to attend an EPSO assessment centre.

The EU EPSO tests are among the hardest set of computer based tests you are ever likely to take when applying for a job. One of the main reasons for this is because there is such high competition for so few places. Here at JobTestPrep we have created tests corresponding to both the EPSO administrator and assistant level tests relating to both the test content, difficulty and time limits. Each question of each test has a full explanation crafted not only to give you the correct answer but also an understanding on why this answer is correct and the other options are not so.

We have gone through the different tests in the EPSO application process. It is worthwhile noting that although numbers are somewhat fluid, across the EU there are between 1,500 and 2,000 new positions available per year. Whilst this may sound like a large number, the competition is immensely fierce with around 70,000 applications received for these jobs. Therefore, it's vital to prepare. 


How Can We Help You?

There are many different and varied positions in the European Union, from secretaries to administrators. All candidates have to go through a rigorous recruitment process in order to be offered a position in the EU. Almost all recruitment for the EU is provided by the European Personnel Selection Office, commonly known as EPSO. Preparing for these tests is essential if you want to do well.This page has served as an introduction to the different tests used in the various EPSO Computer Based Tests.

JobTestPrep is one of the biggest providers of aptitude and psychometric tests and we offer services that give you the best EPSO exams preparation for your job application to the EU, in particular for the EPSO tests. These include, practice tests, interview and assessment centre preparation. There are approximately 70,000 applicants to the EU every year and less than 0.5% of those are actually offered a position. For this reason it is imperative that you are fully prepared for every single aspect of the application. Find out what happens at the EPSO assessment centre competitions.


 Prepare for Success

The EU EPSO tests are among the hardest set of computer based tests you are ever likely to sit in the job application process. One of the main reasons for this is because there is such great competition for places. Here at JobTestPrep we have created like for like tests that correspond to the EPSO tests relating to both the test content and time limits. Moreover, there are full explanations on the tests thus giving you an understanding of the tests and how to improve your scores.