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Deductive and Inductive Reasoning Tests - Spot the Differences

Deductive and inductive reasoning tests are popular aptitude tests seen on many job selection processes. Here we explain the differences between the two test styles and refer you to relevant practice resources.

Put simply, inductive and deductive reasoning are opposite directions of thought used for data analysis. Let's define each term first:


Deductive and Inductive Reasoning Tests - Spot the Differences

What do the tests looks like

In the world of job assessments and aptitude tests, these two reasoning types will be assessed 
through different question formats. Let’s see how these test formats differ.

Inductive Reasoning: Mainly shape sequences and matrices (see an example here).
Deductive Reasoning: Verbal passages and numerical/tabular data (see an example here).

Who is expected to take each test?

Inductive reasoning: almost any job applicant. This is because these tests evaluate general intelligence in a non verbal context.

Deductive reasoning: finance, managers, analysts. This is because deductive reasoning evaluates analytic skills that are part of the daily tasks of these job positions. 

Practice examples

So, now that you know the differences, why not start practicing?

Recommended External resources

  • This is great PDF brochure by SHL, which shows what types of questions appear on their deductive reasoning assessments. Our deductive reasoning practice pack follows these question styles. 
  • This is a great article by Diffen, that goes deeper into the scientific differences between the two modes of thought.

~ JobTestPrep Team ~