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University Ability Test Challenge - Insights

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Ben Hopgood Updated:

Here at AssessmentDay, we conducted an extensive campaign on test taking from students or all shapes and sizes from the Universities right across the United Kingdom. Compiled by our intrepid statisticians at AssessmentDay, here we present the results to you in colourful infographic form.

What is your preferred employment location?

Students of all universities where asked what was their preferred employment location after graduating or finishing their degree.

We can see a big difference in the percentile scores between their Inductive Reasoning results. We see that people looking to move to Greater London (57%) or Mainland Europe (60%) had the highest average percentile scores - suggesting that these places attract some of the brightest logical talent. However, people wanting to locate to Ireland (35%) and Africa (35%) scored surprisingly poorly.

0%10%20%30%40%50%60%70%England - Greater LondonEngland - North WestWalesEngland - South EastEngland - East of EnglandIrelandMainland EuropeAfricaAsia Rest of the worldAustralasiaPreferred Employment Location -Inductive

Gender Statistics

From our three main reasoning tests, Verbal, Numerical and Inductive, we were able to calculate the average percentile of everyone's score sorted by gender. We can see here that transgender students scored signifcantly higher in inductive reasoning than their female counterparts and they also scored a few percentile points higher in verbal reasoning than the males and females too.

44%45%46%47%48%49%50%51%52%53%54%VerbalNumericalInductiveAverage Percentile by GenderFemaleMaleTransgender

However, this impressive higher percentile score in Inductive reasoning from our transgender students is a little misleading. We can see from our pie chart below that the transgender students only made up 2% of the respondents. This means that their score is evitably going to be more skewed. A few high scores would raise the average percentile greater than they would for the female or male responspendents of which there were 52,337 female and 60,630 test takers, compared to the 4,139 transgender test takers.

Female47%Male51%Transgender2%Gender: Percentage of ParticipantsFemaleMaleTransgender

Transgender students scored signifcantly higher in inductive reasoning than their female counterparts.

Which university scored the best?

Perhaps unsurprisingly, Cambridge and UCL scored the highest average score by a stunning margin. Durham university was an impressive third. The most shocking score was perhaps Oxford university, who scored 7 percentages points less than its rival at Cambridge. Nevertheless, it was in the upper levesl of scoring, and scored the same as Bournemouth and Cardiff university at 53.

454749515355575961Athlone ITAll Hallows CollegeAberystwyth UniversityAmerican IntercontinentalAnglia Ruskin UniversityBirmingham City UniversityBrunel University LondonBournemouth UniversityBPP Business SchoolBath Spa UniversityBirkbeckDurhamCardiffUCLKing’s CollegeImperial College LondonOxfordCambridgeSouthamptonGlasgowEdinburghQueen's BelfastTotal Average Score by University

The poorest scoring universities were Aberystwyth and Birkbeck university. So their career services might wish to consider adopting our practice material here as AssessmentDay in order to boost those numbers. That being said, other university scores could have scored lower, but were unable to produce a useable average from our data.

Individual University Case Study - Cambridge

Now we are going to look at a singular university, in this instance Cambridge, to breakdown what the scores look like when pieced this way.

From the University of Cambridge we had a total 500 tests taken. 183 Verbal, 252 Numerical, and only 69 Inductive tests takers. This inevitably lends the inductive test results as a little bit less reliable. And indeed, we can see that the inductive reasoning average percentile score for Cambridge was a huge 71%!

29%28%43%University of CambridgeVerbalNumericalInductive

Nevertheless, that is not to take away from Cambridge scores which, as we can see from our university score chart, has the highest scoring average tied with UCL by a margin. Overall, Cambridge had a fairly below average user take of 500. The univesrities with by far the highest number of test takers was Athlone IT and All Hallows College with a total number of test takers of 19,088 and 17,527 respectively.

Cambridge also scored highest in the inductive reasoning test, with an average percentile score of 71%

Did level of Educational Qualification have an impact?

We asked our test takers what their max level of educational qualification was and compared these scores. Overall, there wasn't any major differences. However, we can see that there is the expected increase in average score across Numerical, Verbal and Inductive, the higher the qualification level is. There is a large difference however between our highest scorers of PhD, Doctorate or equivalent at 53% and our lowest of Other at 48%.

44%46%48%50%52%54%Postgraduate degree or equivalentUniversity degree or equivalentPhD, Doctorate or equivalentA Level or equivalentOtherApprenticeshipGCSE or equivalentQualification Level: Total Average Score

How did each Career Sector perform?

Here we can see the aggregated percentile scores for numerical, verbal, and inductive, and ordered by the career sectors that each student/post-graduate is a part of. Again, one remarkable insight is that the scores between verbal scores were all pretty similar here across the board, with barristers and those in public service coming out ahead just marginally. Numerical varied more widely, with teaching and education doing quite poorly with an average percentile score of 43%, and with investment banking doing the best, tied with HR and recruitment, and management consulting.

Lastly, the inductive reasoning scores varied quite considerably, with investment banking once again performing the best with an average percentile score of 62%! Very impressive…

0%20%40%60%80%100%120%140%160%180%Investment banking and investmentLaw (barristers)Consumer goods and FMCGManagement consultingAccountancy and financial managementHR and recruitmentPropertyPublic service, charity and social workSalesTeaching and educationCareer Sector: Aggregated Percentile ScoresVerbalNumericalInductive

Alas, the same cannot be said for sales who scored a disappointing 39% percentile average, which knocked them back down to one of the lower performing career sectors - which is a shame given their numerical scores were good.

The chart shows the lowest and highest performing sectors. Investment banking followed by barristers coming out on top. This is in-line with higher salaries so perhaps this is not entirely surprising. Worryingly however, teaching and education scored the lowest aggregate percentile score.

How did each nationality fair?

Lastly, we broke the data down by nationality to see how well each country national did on the tests.

However, there were nationals from over 60 different countries that participated in the tests so in order to make a clean chart we limited ourselves to the top 20 countries in terms of number of participants. The top three countries in terms of number of participants was, unsurprisingly, the United Kingdom followed by United States of America and then followed by India.

0%10%20%30%40%50%60%70%80%United KingdomUnited StatesIndiaAustraliaItalyIrelandPhilippinesFranceNigeriaPakistanChinaGermanyNetherlandsSingaporeSwedenSpainHungaryBrazilGhanaUgandaAverage Percentile Score by Nationality -Top 20VerbalNumericalInductive

The standout takeaways from this data is how well Hungary scored on inductive reasoning, scoring the highest average percentile of 71%. China also did really well with 69%. Followed by Netherlands and Singapore also scoring highly with indcutive reasoning. Uganda scored the highest average for verbal reasoning with 60%, helped slightly by their smaller participants numbers. However, the inductive reasoning for Ghana and Uganda was quite poor, with scores of 23% and 26% respectively.

And finally, another interesting insight, was how the scores for numerical reasoning were pretty consistant across the board. THe highest recorded was Uganda, with 57%, again aided by a smaller pariticpation number, but the different between lowest and highest average percentiles was only 15 points or so. Every nation had pretty similar numberical and verbal scores.

Unfortunately, Philippines didn't score too well in any of the three tests, with some of the lowest scores across numerical, verbal, and inductive reasoning.

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