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:
- Inductive Reasoning: the inference of general rules from particular instances.
- Deductive Reasoning: the inference of particular instances from a general rule.
What Do the Tests Look 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.
So, now that you know the differences, why not start practising?
Obtain free samples for Inductive Reasoning.
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.