CAST Test: Free Practice & Preparation [2021]
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The Different CAST Aptitude Test Sections

The four different test are:

Test

Time Limit

Number of Questions

What we Offer You

Graphic Arithmetic Test

30 minutes

16

2 Full-length tests  

Mathematical Usage

7 minutes

18

5 Full-length tests + extra drills

Mechanical Concepts

20 minutes

44

3 Full-length tests + 21 extra drills

Reading for Comprehension

30 minutes

32

2 Full-length tests + study guide


How Hard Is the Cast Test?

I can tell you from personal experience, having taken the test myself, that it isn’t easy. The questions are not overly hard. However, the fact that you have to do the math with a pen and paper instead of a calculator adds another level of complexity combined with the time limit given, particularly to the math and mechanical tests, can really be a cause for alarm.


CAST Test Scoring

As the test is used by lots of different companies, they each have their own standards and can choose what they want their pass mark to be. Not only that, but depending on the number of candidates they have and where they all scored, they can change their pass level.

In general though CAST aptitude test pass score - is on the upper 20%.

 

How Can JobTestPrep Help You Pass the CAST Test?

Having been in the online test preparation market since 1992, helping over a million candidates get the job they want. You’ll get the same type of questions, the same time limit in an easy to understand fashion so you won’t be caught off guard when you come to take the real thing.

The questions are designed to be exactly the same level of difficulty as the real thing. We offer a money back guarantee.

 

CAST Sample Questions

Graphic Arithmetic Test

In the CAST Graphic Arithmetic Test you have 30 minutes to answer 16 questions. It measures your ability to solve arithmetic problems by using information from drawings. What this means is that you are presented with a top down diagram of a building. This building has lots of measurements and different rooms inside. There are however, some measurements missing. It is your task, without the use of a calculator, to calculate these numbers in order to answer the questions.

The questions are multiple choice, with five different answers.

All in all, there will be two different images. However, each image has eight separate questions relating to it. Since this is the case, it’s important to remember that you may use the answers to the previous questions in order to help you answer the current one.

Let’s take a look at a CAST sample question:

 

The length (top to bottom) of the total property is ____ times larger than the length of the nurse's room.

3
3 1/2
3 1/3
3.6
Correct Answer
Incorrect Answer

To find the ratio between these two values, divide the length of the total property (90') by the length of the nurse's room (27'). Note that both numbers can be divided by 9:

 

What’s particularly difficult here is that you cannot use a calculator in this section of the CAST exam. You need to know how to do a variety of different calculations including long division in order to answer this question correctly without having to guess. That’s why, on this PrepPack™, we have included super clear instructions on how to carry out these calculations.


Mathematical Usage

The Mathematical Usage test measures your ability to solve basic mathematical problems from information provided in the test. You are provided with a table with a number of different relationships. For example, the number of grams in a tonne. You have to use this table in order to answer questions based on this information.

The actual test has 18 questions with a 7-minute time limit. This is a short time limit and really requires a high level of attention. You want to and you can get 100% on this test. You just need to learn how to really focus in on what’s being asked and how to solve it.

Let’s take a look at a sample question:

1 fathom = 6 feet

1 mile = 5,280 feet

0.5 miles = ? fathoms

1200
600
440
640
None of the Above
Correct Answer
Incorrect Answer

In order to answer this question you need to first of all work out the number of miles in feet. Following this, you need to work out how many fathoms are there in the number of feet that you have already calculated.

This gives us the following:

0.5 mile multiplied by 5,280 = 2,640 = the number of feet

Now divide 2,640 by 6 to give you the number of feet = 440

Therefore the correct answer is C, 440.

 

As above, there are no calculators allowed in this test. 30 seconds per question is really steep and although you may be able to answer all the questions, doing so within the time allotted is going to be a steep challenge. This is why it’s absolutely imperative to give yourself the practice and preparation that you need in order to succeed on the CAST test.


Mechanical Concepts

In this CAST assessment you are tested on your understanding of mechanical concepts and principles. These principles include:

  • Centrifugal Force
  • Gears
  • Gravity
  • Levers
  • Pulleys
  • Shapes

And many others besides. For each question there are three possible answers and, as with all the other sections of the CAST assessment, you have to work fast in order to answer all the questions within the allotted time. 44 questions in only 20 minutes gives you less than 30 seconds per question. That’s why preparation is so key here. It’s not only knowing the principles, it’s answering the questions quickly enough to get through them all in the allotted time.

Let’s take a look at a sample question:

In which of the following positions would the tractor be less stable when taking a turn?

CAST free test

 

A
B
The same
Correct Answer
Incorrect Answer

As you can see, the only difference between the two figures is the position of the tractors shovel. In figure A the shovel is lowered, while in Figure B the shovel is raised. The raising of the shovel will also raise the point of the center of mass of the tractor. When the center of mass of the tractor is higher, the tractor loses some stability (A good example could be the difference between a semi-trailer and a sports car. The tall and narrow semi-trailer has a higher point of center of mass and is less stable than the low lying, flat and wide sports car which has a lower point of center of mass).

 

Since in Figure B the shovel is raised, it is less stable. Therefore, choice B is the correct answer.

 

Take a look at this video explaining the basic mechanical concepts to get a better grip on the subject. 

Play Video preview image

Reading for Comprehension

In this CAST aptitude test you have to answer 32 questions in a 30 minute time frame.

You are presented with four different passages and for each passage you have to answer eight questions. These passages are long and take some time to read. Whilst it may seem worthwhile to just scan through the paragraphs, it isn’t really advisable as you have to answer eight questions on it. Trying to take everything in is therefore a good idea in this situation. There are four different answer options for each of the questions.

Let’s take a look at an example question:

Static Electricity

Most of us remember a painful incident when sparks blasted our hands after touching metal objects. Do you remember the game we used to play as kids where we would rub a balloon against a wool sweater and then see if the balloon would stick to the wall? These are examples of "static electricity." Though static electricity is a common phenomenon, its cause is often misunderstood.

Static electricity can result from the friction of two objects rubbing against each other, like the sole of your shoes against the carpet. However, friction is not required for static electricity to occur. It is a common misconception that friction is required to create static electricity. It is true that friction can increase the likelihood of static electricity, but it is not the cause. The true cause is the separation of negative and positive charges.

Every object is composed of a collection of positive and negative electric charges. Usually, the number of positive charges and the number of negative charges is equal. Static electricity (more correctly called "net electric charge") occurs whenever the number of positive and negative electric charges is not perfectly equal.

Let's take the example of walking across a carpeted room. When we walk, the soles of our shoes absorb some negative charge found in the carpet. We leave behind electric positive footprints, and our bodies acquire some negative charges. This process goes on for some time until our body achieves a high level of negative electric charge. The next time that we touch someone or some object, we will get zapped as the imbalanced charge is shared between us and the other person or object. The spark is painful because it is extremely hot. It creates tiny burned areas on our skin that hurt for a couple of seconds.

There is a simple way to avoid shocks caused by static electricity. Before touching objects such as a doorknob or a car door, first touch the object with a car key. The static electric sparks will blast the key rather than your hand and will painlessly discharge from your body. After the static electricity has been discharged, you can safely touch metal objects. Of course, if you walk around on the carpet again, you will once again acquire static electricity.

According to the passage, how common is "static electricity"?

It is very common
It is quite rare
It happens only in winter
The paragraph does not provide sufficient information to answer this question
Correct Answer
Incorrect Answer

Explanation: A is the correct answer. The fourth sentence in the first paragraph states that "Though static electricity is a common phenomenon...."

 

As you can see, the passage, for reading comprehension is very long at over 300 words. It’s very worthwhile for you to get to grips with such passages and learn how to answer these questions. Unfortunately, it’s easy to get distracted by long texts and that is why practice really does make perfect.


Who Needs to Take the CAST Test?

Although there can be myriad uses for the CAST test, in general terms, people who want to work in the following services can be expected to take the test:

✔ Construction and skilled trade professionals

✔ Transmission and distribution

✔ Facilities and repair

✔ Other facilities (e.g., carpenter)

✔ Electrical repair

✔ Machining and vehicle repair

✔ Meter service and repair

 

Here is a list of positions who need to take the CAST test:

  • Apprentice Lineman
  • Automotive Technician
  • Division Mechanic Assistant
  • Elevator Constructor Apprentice
  • Energy Tech
  • Groundsman
  • Helper Maintenance Technician
  • Helper/Climbing School
  • Line worker
  • Lineman
  • Lineman Helper, Climbing School
  • Maintenance Mechanic
  • MCC-BT
  • Overhead Helper
  • Substation construction
  • Substation Electrician
  • Substation Helper
  • Technician Maintenance
  • Transmission Line Maintenance
  • Utility Worker

What Are the Most Popular Companies Using the CAST Test For Recruitment?

Exelon: Exelon provides electricity and natural gas to 7.8 million customers and is one of the largest energy generators in the US.

Duke Energy: The largest electric power holding company in the United States. Headquartered in North Carolina, Duke Energy provides service in the Carolinas, Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky, and Florida.

Southern California Edison: This is the largest subsidiary of Edison International, and provides electricity for much of Southern California. It delivers 15 million people with electricity across a service territory of approximately 50,000 square miles.

PSEG: The Public Service Enterprise Group is headquartered in Newark, New Jersey and was established in 1985 with a legacy dating back to 1903. The company's largest subsidiary is Public Service Electric and Gas Company.

Southern Company: Headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, with executive offices also located in Birmingham, Alabama. The company is currently the second largest utility company in the U.S. in terms of customer base.

Dominion Energy: Dominion Energy operates in 16 states across the US and provides services to more than 7 million customers.

Xcel Energy: Xcel Energy Inc. is a utility holding company based in Minneapolis, Minnesota, serving more than 3.7 million electric customers and 2.1 million natural gas customers in Minnesota, Michigan, Wisconsin, North Dakota, South Dakota, Colorado, Texas, and New Mexico in 2019.

Georgia Power: Georgia Power is the largest subsidiary of Southern Company, one of the nation's largest generators of electricity.


FAQs

What Does CAST Stand For?

CAST stands for the Construction and Skilled Trade Selection System examination. It is administered by EEI (Edison Electric Institute).

How Long Is the CAST Test?

The CAST test is four separate tests. Each one is no longer than 30 minutes. As it is a paper and pen test, there are obviously some breaks. Therefore you can expect it to take approximately two hours to complete.

How Is the CAST Test Scored?

The CAST test can be scored both by machine and by hand. Scores from the four CAST aptitude test are combined into a single index score, ranging from 1 - 10 (10 being the highest). The index score reflects the expected probability of successful job performance.

Can You Use a Calculator on the CAST Test?

Can You Use a Calculator on the CAST Test?

No. Calculators are not allowed in the test.

How Many Questions Is the CAST Test?

Overall there are 110 questions spread over four tests. For the breakdown see above.

What Is on the CAST Test?

There are four different tests: graphic arithmetic, mathematical usage, mechanical concepts and reading comprehension.

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