Prepare for NHS Graduate Scheme Tests: Numerical, Verbal Reasoning, SJT and Personality

See how JobTestPrep can help you prepare for the NHS graduate scheme online aptitude tests. 
Practice NHS Graduate Tests

Practice the same Kenexa style tests as seen in the NHS graduate scheme online tests.

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NHS's Graduate Scheme is a two year programme (two and a half for Finance) where graduates will experience what it is like to really work at the NHS and will receive special training. The NHS will support graduates achieve a post-graduate academic or professional qualification. Upon completion of the programme, graduates will be provided with support to further enhance their careers within the NHS.

There are a number of different steps in the NHS application process and we will detail them below:

Recruiting and Qualifications

Currently, the NHS offers graduate training scheme roles for four positions: General Management, Finance Management, Human Resources Management and Health Informatics Management. In order to be eligible to apply for the Graduate Scheme, candidates are required to meet at least one of the following requirements:

  • A 2.2 degree or higher in any subject.
  • A degree level equivalent to the above that are health or management related which include:
  • Diploma in Speech and Language Therapy;
  • Diploma in Nursing, Health Visiting or Midwifery (Dip HE Nursing), etc;
  • Diploma from the College of Radiographers (DCR);
  • Diploma in Management Studies (DMS);
  • Diploma in Social Work (DSW) or the Certificate of Qualification in Social Work (CQSW);
  • Diploma from the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy;
  • Diploma from the College of Occupational Therapy (DipCOT);
  • NVQ level 5 in management.
  • A postgraduate qualification such as an MBA, Masters or PhD.

The NHS Application Form

The first stage of the NHS application process requires you to complete a fairly basic online application form after the completion of a questionnaire used as a self-assessment tool to determine if you really want to work for the NHS. This questionnaire is not assessed but if you don’t answer yes to every single question you will be asked to ensure that you really want to work for the NHS before applying. If this application is successful you will be invited to take the four NHS online aptitude tests that are outlined below.

The NHS Aptitude Tests

There are four different tests in the NHS aptitude test battery and they are provided by two different providers. These two providers are Kenexa, one of the biggest companies in the psychometric world and by a smaller company called Pearn Kandola. You can find out about the different Kenexa tests here.

NHS Numeracy Test

In this test you will have 20 questions to answer within the 20 minute limit. You will be presented with various different items of numerical data in the form of charts and tables. You will have to calculate different answers in order to answer the questions correctly. Practising for these tests is necessary as even if the questions themselves aren’t too difficult, they are generally only worked out with time, something that you don’t have in these tests. Hence the practice of them is very important if you want to do yourself justice. Practice these Kenexa Numerical tests here.

NHS Verbal Reasoning Test

In this test you will be presented with a paragraph of information with some different, often disjointed facts that you need to understand quickly. Based on the paragraph, you need to answer 24 multiple choice questions within a 17 minute timeframe. Again here, the need of practise is imperative as there is less than one minute per question. Make sure you practise these questions with one of our Kenexa Verbal practise packs available here.

NHS Personality Test

In this untimed test you will be presented with 150 different statements relating to your personality. For example, in the NHS personality test you will get a statement such as “I often feel that the need to do something exciting” and you have to choose whether you agree or disagree with the statement. Although it has been said in the past that it is impossible to study for these tests, expert studies have concluded conclusively that preparing for these tests leads to success. Find out more here.

NHS Situational Judgement Test (SJT)

In the NHS SJT you will be presented with different situations and given a few different choices of action to choose from. For example, you may be presented with a situation such as the organisation of a medical conference only to find out that one of the leading speakers has lost his voice. You will be given a variety of different choices to choose from and you have to select the path of action that you would choose in the situation. You can practise these tests with JobTestPrep for the complete preparation package.

Only a fraction of candidates come through these NHS aptitude tests so it is more than worthwhile to ensure you have sufficient practise and training before tackling these tests. If you do well enough on these tests you will move onto the next stage of the NHS application process, the NHS interview.

The NHS Interview

Once you have come through the NHS online tests you will be invited to the come in for an NHS interview. This is a competency based interview and in it you will have to provide examples of where you have demonstrated the core competencies mentioned in your job application. In general, these competencies fall into the following categories:

  • Compassion
  • Commitment to a high quality care service
  • Everyone counts
  • Improving lives
  • Respect and dignity
  • Working together for patients

When preparing answers for this interview, ensure that you include the relevant competencies in your answers. This NHS interview is usually held together with two consultants of the NHS and usually lasts half an hour. For some real practise and to pick up some valuable NHS interview tips try out our Skype Interview preparation package.

If you do well enough through these stages you have already beaten more than half of the competition. Find out about what will happen in the NHS assessment centre on the next page.

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"These were vital to understanding why errors were made and thus ensure improvements."
January 2015, Consultant in Public Health Training
"Excellent course material, found it very useful for all steps of the examination."
NHS Post Graduate Training Scheme, June 2015

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