Law Firm Verbal Reasoning and Situational Judgement Test Preparation

Are you a lawyer, law graduate or law student applying for a job at a law firm?  In this article we look at the law aptitude or psychometric tests routinely used by law firms in their recruitment for legal jobs. Find out more about how we can help you prepare for each assessment. 
Law Firm Aptitude Tests

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The purpose of legal aptitude tests is to assess your abilities against the set of skills essential to every lawyer. In particular, most law firm applicants can expect a verbal reasoning test or a Watson Glaser critical thinking test. Read on for more information about legal psychometric tests and how to prepare for them. If you are interested in becoming a Barrister, read up on the Bar Course Aptitude Test on our BCAT page.

Law Verbal Reasoning Test

The ability to assess the logic contained in written information is a key skill for many lawyers. The verbal reasoning test assesses your ability to understand, analyse and interpret the information provided in a written text. In a legal verbal reasoning test, this information is likely to be some form of legal passage, or the questions will ask you to use legal ideas to answer. In a legal verbal reasoning test you are either asked to answer a multiple choice question, or assess whether a statement based on the text is true, false, or you cannot say based only on the information contained in the text. Learn more about law verbal reasoning tests and how to prepare with JobTestPrep.

Watson Glaser Critical Thinking Test

The Watson Glaser critical thinking test is a high level analytical test provided by Pearson TalentLens. Thinking critically involves considering a range of information from a variety of sources, processing the information, logically but creatively, analysing it, challenging assumptions and finally coming to a set of conclusions which are backed up what you have read. In a Watson Glaser test you are given a text, and asked to assess whether a statement based on the text is true, probably true, inadequate data, false or probably false. Find out more about Watson Glaser tests and prepare for this test with our dedicated preparation pack. 

Situational Judgement Test Law

A law situational judgement test looks at how you respond to situations you may come up in your everyday life as a corporate lawyer. This is a common test in law firm recruitment process. Lawyers need to be able to judge a situation well and decide on the best course of action going forward, often in a very short period of time, and the situational judgement test for lawyers is one way of measuring this skill.

In a legal situational judgement test you will be presented with scenarios that you may come across as a trainee lawyer. Below the scenario is a list of options of how to respond to this situation. Your task in this test is to choose the correct course of action. Situational judgement tests are untimed, giving you time to consider each question carefully. The legal situational judgement skills the test will examine are alluded to in the law firm’s competencies and person profiles for the job you are applying to, but usually include problem solving, teamwork, communication and negotiation skills and more. Preparing for a situational judgement test will help you hone the underlying skills needed when assessing a situation. 

Prepare for your your law firm situational judgement test with our situational judgement preparation pack

Legal Psychometric Tests

As well as verbal reasoning and critical thinking tests, you may be asked to complete other legal assessments in the course of your recruitment process. These tests include:

Personality tests are designed to assess the fit between your personality and work styles and the person profile they are looking for in the job. Again the person profile is your starting point for what they look for, but as examples, law firms will look for specific personal skills such as a cool head, or a good team worker.

Logical reasoning tests measure your lateral thinking skills through shapes and patterns rather than with words or numbers. In this test you are given a set of shapes, and asked to identify the pattern connecting them in order to complete the sequence. Identifying patterns and thinking laterally about problems are key skills in a lawyer.

Numerical reasoning tests are rare in law firm applications but they may be applied in certain cases. These tests assess your ability to work with numerical information including tables, graphs and charts, and pick out the relevant details to create a picture or state a case.

Written exercises may be used in an assessment centre. This exercise often involves one or more pieces of information for you to read over, followed by a task based on what you have read, including summarising the information, writing a briefing note, or compiling a report, all key components of a career in law.

Group exercises are another popular assessment centre exercise. A group exercise assesses any number of skills including: communication, negotiation, team working, team leadership and ability to listen to others.

Testing Companies and Law Firm Aptitude Tests

Two testing companies, CEB’s SHL and Pearson TalentLens provide the majority of law firm assessments. Read more about some of the companies who use these tests.

Law Aptitude Test Practice

As with all tests, preparation is important ahead of your assessment. By preparing you can learn, refresh or hone skills that may need sharpening. Many reasoning tests are different to the tests you have taken in the past, so taking practice tests will familiarise you with the requirements of the test, which in turn will make settling in to the test easier, and enable you to answer questions quicker and more accurately.

Our law firm aptitude test page sets out all the tests you could need to prepare for your assessments. Find out more about our practice packs, and start preparing for your future today.

Law School Aptitude Test

If you haven't attended law school just yet and are looking into the field, it is important to note that some of the leading law schools in the UK require candidates to sit the Law National Aptitude Test (LNAT). This test examines your reasoning skills, ability to make logical deductions, interpret complex verbal information and and analyse it. The test also assesses how well you can make reasoned arguments.

Read our guide about law firm applications on our blog.

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