Some numerical reasoning tests do not allow the use of calculators. These tests usually contain a very different mix of question, and are usually fast moving, giving you just a few seconds to answer each one. Learn more about the question styles in non-calculator numerical reasoning tests, and get examples of some of the tests that do not allow calculators. 

Non-calculator tests by company:

Some of the most common non-calculator numerical reasoning test question types are:

Non-Calculator Numerical Test

There are several non-calculator tests available. One of the most common types of test is the cognitive ability test, but there are others which will be discussed below.

Cognitive Ability Tests

Cognitive ability tests such as the Revelian CAT, Cubiks Logiks tests, or PLI are usually fast-moving tests with a mixture of numerical, verbal and non-verbal questions. The numerical questions in this type of test are a mix of the above styles and more, and on top of the short time allocated per question (usually about 20 seconds), you may not use a calculator in this test, requiring you to think quickly and accurately.

SHL Numerical Test Without a Calculator

CEB’s SHL offers several tests which do not allow the use of calculators. These tests include the Number Series Test (which is part of the IT Test Series) and the Numerical Computation Test (which is part of the Personnel Test Battery), as well as others. Each of these tests uses some of the question types listed above.

cut-e Numeracy Test

This calculation test from cut-e contains several different question styles including mental arithmetic, manipulating equations and using the correct order of operations. Learn more about this test and how to prepare for it with our specially tailored practice pack.


Other Non-Calculator Maths Test

As well as the tests listed above, some of the tests taken by the Army Officer Selection Board, Australian Defence Force (ADF), RAF, firefighters, nurses, paramedics and other applicants do not allow calculators. These tests usually contain a mix of word problems, mental arithmetic and other calculations.

Number Series

In a number series, you are given a string of numbers, which are linked together by a logical pattern. Your task is usually to identify this pattern and choose the last or missing number in the sequence from a set of options. This test is less about maths and more about identifying patterns and applying logic to solve problems. This type of question appears in the Revelian cognitive ability test, IBM IPAT, PLI, SHL number series test and Cubiks Logiks test among others. Taking practice tests will help you learn solving strategies and answer questions quickly and accurately.

Word Problems

Word problems are questions where you are given a mathematical question in the form of a passage of text. These questions usually require you to make a quick mental arithmetic calculation to answer the question. An example question can be seen below. In order to answer this question or select the correct answer from a list of options, you need to be able to do subtraction and division quickly. This type of question is in the Revelian CAT, many specialist tests, Cubiks Logiks and more. Practising this type of question helps you improve your speed when working out the correct answer.

Sample word problem:

Chris has had three surprise birthday parties over the course of his life.
The first surprise party was for his 28th birthday.
The next one was x years later.
The third party was 3x years later for his 60th birthday.
How old was Chris at his second surprise party?

  1. 35
  2. 36
  3. 37
  4. 48

Mental Arithmetic

These questions are short sums that you are expected to answer quickly using just your brain. In these questions, you may be asked to add, subtract, multiply or divide, or you may be asked to work out a percentage of a whole number. Ahead of taking any test like this you need to be sure that you can work out answers in your head without making mistakes. Questions like this are commonly used in nursing and paramedic numeracy tests, as well as other tests for jobs that need quick calculations. By practising, you can be sure you know what to do on the real test.

Data Interpretation Questions

Data interpretation questions require you to understand and use the information in a table or graph. Data interpretation is a part of most numerical reasoning tests and asks you to pull out the relevant information from the table or graph and make some calculations in order to answer a question on the dataset. Questions like this appear in the RAF AST and AOSB tests. Read more about this type of question in our numerical reasoning pages.

Non-Calculator Numerical Test Practice

The skills needed to complete a non-calculator numerical reasoning tests vary from logic to mental arithmetic. Practice for each of these skills is essential to helping you get the score you need. By preparing for the test you gain confidence, improve your speed and accuracy and ensure that you fulfil your potential in the real test. We have a numerical reasoning practice pack for no calculator tests. This pack contains test questions for all the above types as well as tutorials, study guides and drills to give you a complete test preparation. Start practising now!

More About Our Service

The non-calculator numeracy test examines your maths ability to solve a variety of problems without using a calculator. Some of the questions will require you to do some mental calculation, interpret data from charts and tables, solve number series in advanced levels and so on.

Many people are worried that they are not going to do well on the numerical tests because they have forgotten elementary maths skills from secondary school. We have study guides and drills that will help you brush up on all important maths skills required for your test. Our tests are designed in a way that you learn different methods and tricks in order to be able to solve any question you may encounter. Practising in advance will help you increase your confidence on the test day and improve your performance.

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