Practice Tests

Criteria Universal Cognitive Ability Test (UCAT)

Introduced in April 2016, Criteria's UCAT is an aptitude test created for candidates whose first language is not English.


The UCAT is very similar to the CCAT, except that it does not include verbal questions, so as to minimize linguistical aspects and make it accessible and translatable worldwide. It is the only test Criteria have created that has been translated into numerous languages, including French, English, Spanish and Polish.

Full nameUniversal Cognitive Aptitude Test
PresentationUniversal General Cognitive Ability Test
Measured skillsCritical thinking, problem solving, attention to detail and logical understanding
Duration20 minutes
Number of items40 questions
LanguagesEnglish, French, Spanish, Chinese, Indian, German, Polish, Chinese, Indian

How Does the UCAT Work?

The UCAT is a 20-minute test which consists of 40 questions. The UCAT is unique in that it contains no verbal reasoning questions and is therefore easily translatable and ideal for international use. This UCAT is useful in hiring processes for a wide variety of jobs; and is particularly effective for jobs requiring aptitude in problem solving, critical thinking, analysis and mathematical reasoning. Moreover, a scientific study found the UCAT to be highly accurate in prediction of a potential employee's quality of work.

What Skills Are Evaluated?

Just like the CCAT, which is Criteria's most popular cognitive reasoning test, the UCAT assesses a candidates' cognitive ability using several factors such as critical reasoning, problem solving capacity and logical reasoning. The UCAT places greater emphasis on problem solving, attention to detail and data interpretation than the CCAT, making it particularly useful in evaluating candidates for positions requiring quantitative and analytical skill.

What Topics Do the UCAT Questions Cover?

The UCAT questions are identical to the CCAT questions bar the verbal ability questions. It can therefore be divided into two categories of questions:

  1. Numerical and logical reasoning: just as in the CCAT, these questions evaluate the candidate's numerical reasoning capacity. Calculators are not allowed.
  2. Spatial Reasoning: Spatial reasoning questions assess the candidate's ability to visualize, identify and sort shapes.

Example of a UCAT Question

How many shapes in the right column are exactly the same as the shapes in the left column?

Criteria Universal Cognitive Ability Test (UCAT) Spatial Reasoning Example
  1. 0
  2. 1
  3. 2
  4. 3
  5. 4

Answer and explanation

The correct answer is B: 1.

The question in the statement asks for the opposite word and not a synonym. That is why it is important to read the statement carefully.

How Are the Test Results Presented?

The UCAT results are presented in a comprehensive profile report, including the number of correct answers, as well as the candidate's percentile ranking, based on all individuals who took the test. The report also contains scores for each ability, thus detailing the strengths and weaknesses of the candidates in four categories:

  1. Logic and analysis
  2. Numerical reasoning
  3. Paying attention to details
  4. Spatial reasoning

Finally, the profile report also includes a ranking of all positions, according to Criteria standards and categories. The candidate's raw score is then positioned correspondingly, indicating whether he or she has the required score for the position requested.

Which Professions Are Relevant for the UCAT?

Since the UCAT is the same as the CCAT bar the verbal questions, the same professions are relevant. The following list below details various jobs requiring the candidate to undertake either the CCAT or the UCAT:

SectorTests
AccountantsUCAT, EPP
Analysts (financial)UCAT, EPP
Analysts (market research)UCAT, EPP
Counter clerkUCAT, EPP
Executive DirectorUCAT, EPP
Clerical (bookkeeping and accounting)UCAT, CBST
ProgrammersUCAT
Software engineersUCAT, EPP
Director of OperationsUCAT, EPP
Graphic designerUCAT
Human Resources ManagerUCAT, EPP
IT consultantUCAT, CSAP
Credit ManagerUCAT, EPP
ManagersUCAT, EPP
Store ManagerUCAT, EPP
Marketing ManagerUCAT, EPP
Mechanical engineerUCAT
Network AdministratorUCAT, MRAB
Office ManagerUCAT, EPP
Paralegal and Legal AssistantUCAT, EPP
Personal Financial AdvisorsUCAT, SalesAP
Recruitment ManagerUCAT, EPP
PhysiotherapistUCAT, CSAP
Purchasing ManagerUCAT, EPP
Sales ManagerUCAT, EPP
CommercialUCAT, CBST, SalesAP
Sales Representatives (technology)UCAT, EPP
Social WorkerUCAT, CSAP
Quality Engineer/Software IntegrationUCAT
Technical WriterUCAT
ControllerUCAT, EPP
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