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What's on This Page?

1. The CCAT Test - General Information
2. Important Tips
3. CCAT Test Sample Questions
4. Companies Using the Criteria Cognitive Aptitude Test
5. Test Scores Explained
6. CCAT Practice Test Reviews
7. See the Tailored CCAT PrePack™


The Criteria Cognitive Aptitude Test - CCAT

The Criteria Cognitive Aptitude Test (CCAT) is a general pre-employment aptitude test that measures problem-solving abilities, learning skills, and critical thinking. The CCAT exam is 15 minutes long and consists of 50 questions in:

The questions and topics are mixed together and are presented in no specific order, with the difficulty level for each question increasing as you progress.


7 Tips to Improve Your CCAT Test Scores

Here are some helpful tips that may assist you during your criteria test.

  1. If you find yourself stuck, guess, don't waste precious time. Guessing does not take off points and it’s certainly better than leaving a question unanswered.
  2. Pay attention to the answer choices. Sometimes ruling out unreasonable answers can prove to be an effective problem-solving strategy.
  3. Time management is important. Although very few people actually finish the test in time, you must be aware throughout the test of how much time is left.
  4. Using a calculator or any other external device is forbidden, but make sure you have some scratch paper and a pen or a pencil to assist you in your calculations.
  5. Remember, on the actual exam, you are not permitted to go back to previous questions. 
  6. Be aware that the questions increase in difficulty throughout the test. The first questions should not take long to solve.
  7. Don't get depressed if you don't know an "easy" question. There are many reasons for not finding the right answer, like missing tiny details, or topic that you are weaker on. Time is precious, so move on and try to answer the next question.

 

How to Pass the CCAT Test?

Get fully prepared for your upcoming CCAT Test with the complete PrepPack™. Access 5 CCAT practice tests complete with score reports and detailed answer explanations.

 

CCAT Test Sample Questions

Here are some untimed CCAT cognitive assessment test questions. Keep in mind that calculators are not allowed during the CCAT. However, using pen and paper is recommended.

 

Question 1 - Spatial Reasoning (Next In Series)

What is the next shape in the following sequence?

CCAT Sample Question 5 - Next in Series

ccat sample 02 choices

Choose the correct answer:

           
 

Tip: In first glance, without any preparation, the above question could be very confusing. However, once familiarized with this sort of questions, you should answer them as quickly as possible. This can only be achieved by practicing as many questions as possible, studying the patterns and learning from mistakes.

The correct answer is D.

There are two characteristics which change in this series: color of triangles and the direction of the diagonal line.

Color: the pattern of the colors is: white/grey, black/grey, white/black etc. Thus, the subsequent frame will be black/grey. In addition, the color of each triangle is the same as the color of the adjacent triangle in the frame next to it. For instance, in the 2nd frame, the top-left triangle is grey, just like the top-right triangle in the 1st frame, and the bottom-right triangle is black, just like the bottom-left triangle in the 3rd frame.

Direction of the diagonal line: the direction shifts between a diagonal from the top left corner to the bottom right corner and a diagonal line from the bottom left corner to the top right corner. Following this pattern, the answer will have a diagonal line from the top left corner to the bottom right corner.

Therefore, the correct answer is D.

Question 2 - Spatial Reasoning (Matrices)

The pictures in the box go together by following a pattern. Choose the picture that should go in the empty space.

CCAT Sample Question Matrice 1

CCAT Sample Question Matrice 1 Answers

Choose the correct answer:

           
 

Tip: In these kinds of questions, the best way to operate is to divide the matrix into small patterns, and try to understand them separately.

For example, in this question, you have: a) The happy face. b) The color of the stars. c) The direction of the open side of the square.

Moreover, it is wise to divide the matrix into the row pattern and the column pattern.

The correct answer is C.

In the above matrix (from left to right):

  • Across the rows: The black stars rotate clockwise around the smiley face. The horizontal line in each box alternates between resting above or below the smiley face.
  • Down the columns: The black stars increase by one and the horizontal lines continue to alternate. The correct answer will follow the above patterns.

That leaves answer choice C as the correct answer.

Question 3 - Math (Next In Series)

Select the next number in the pattern:
2, 6, 10, 30, 34, ?






 

Tip: In "next in series" questions, the answer always lies in a hidden pattern that connects the series. Sometimes it's as easy as the repeating difference between two adjacent numbers, and sometimes it's a bit more complicated.

In more complex questions, the differences can form a series of their own. For example:

2,     6,      12,     20,      30,       42

   +4     +6     +8     +10    +12

       +2      +2     +2       +2

The correct answer is 102.

This series will alternately multiply by 3 and then add 4 to get to the next number. Therefore, the next number in the series will be 34 X 3=102
2,     6,       10,     30,      34,      102
    *3     +4        *3      +4        *3

The Full CCAT Practice Test PrepPack™

Question 4 - Math (Distance Word Problem)

A truck travels at a speed of 30 miles per hour to its destination. On the way back it returns at half the time. What was the speed of the truck on the way back?






 

Tip: as in this questions, sometimes a problem that looks complicated, can be solved very fast with simple logic. Remember, time is of the essence, especially in the CCAT exam, where you have 50 questions in 15 minutes (18 seconds per question in average!). 

The correct answer is 60.

This is a distance problem. 

Solution A:
In order to travel the same distance in half the time, the speed must be double the original speed. Hence, the speed the way back is 2∙30 = 60miles/hour. 

Solution B:

CCAT-Distance-Word-Problem-Explanation;

Question 5 - Logic (Seating Arrangement)

In a famous zoo, exactly five panda bears - Jinan, Knot, Lee, Mushu, and Nee-Hau - are kept in three adjacent courts numbered 1 to 3, 1 being the court furthest to the left and 3 furthest to the right.

Each court holds at least one panda bear, and every panda bear can be kept in one court only. The pandas' location must be consistent with the following:

  • Knot is kept in a court somewhere to the left of the court Lee is kept in.
  • Mushu and Nee-Hau are not kept in the same court.
  • Either Mushu or Jinan, but not both, are kept in court 2.
  • Nee-Hau is kept in court 3.

Which one of the following pairs could be the only occupants of a single court?






 

Tip: In all seating arrangement questions, the best way to address the question is to draw a table, row, or column, in which you can place the arguments.

For example, in this question, you can draw three adjacent squares to represent the three panda courts.

In other questions, you may need to draw a row of five lines to represent five seats or draw a column of four squares to represent a four-story building.

The correct answer is (A) "Jinan, Knot".

The correct answer to this question is the only response in which the bears can be held together in the same court, regardless of what court it is. This means that in the four wrong responses the bears mentioned cannot be kept in the same court.

(A) Can Jinan and Knot be kept together in the same court? Knot can be kept in courts 1 and 2 (see derivatives). If Jinan is kept with him in court 1, this means that Mushu must be kept in court 2 (either Jinan or Mushu in court 2). Nee-Hau must be kept in court 3, and Lee can be kept either in court 2 or in court 3 (K < L).

This is a possible setup that does not violate any of the rules:

1-J,K; 2-M,L; 3-N

Therefore, the correct answer is (A). After finding the correct answer, there is no need to examine the remaining responses.

(B) Nee-Hau must be kept in court 3, but according to the derivatives, Knot cannot be in kept in court 3. Thus, this is not the correct answer.

(C) According to the rules, either Mushu or Jinan must be kept in court 2, but not both. Therefore, they cannot be kept together at all. Thus, this is not the correct answer.

(D) Since Knot is kept in a court to the left of Lee (K < L), Knot and Lee cannot share a court. Thus, this is not the correct answer.

(E) The rules in the question specifically state that Mushu and Nee-Hau cannot share the same court (~MN). Thus, this is not the correct answer.

Question 6 - Verbal (Sentence Completion)

The sentence below has a word missing. Which word from the options below makes the most sense of the sentence?

Over the past century technology has advanced at a(n) ___ rapid pace, making predictions for the next century close to impossible.






 

Tip: When you do not know the answer at all, it's important to rule out as many answers as you can, but it's even more important not to waste too much time deliberating on the question. Just make an educated guess and move on to the next question.

The correct answer is "amazingly".

The missing word comes before an adjective and after a verb. Therefore, it has to be an adverb. The suffix -ly modifies the root-word from an adjective into an adverb, so option 5 is ruled out. Amongst the remaining, "amazingly" is the best fit.

Question 7 - Verbal (Analogies)

TENACIOUS is to FLEXIBILITY as






 

Tip: The method in verbal analogies is to create a logical sentence that connects the two words. You want to be specific and to be precise. For example: SMALL - TINY ⇒ Sentence: (Word 2) is the extreme mode of (Word 1). That way, you can use the sentence on the answers, and see which one fits the best. Just make sure you keep the order of the words as it is in the original analogy.

The correct answer is C.

Something TENACIOUS is characterized as something keeping a firm hold of something else, not showing any FLEXIBILITY. Similarly, a person who is BOORISH is not well-mannered and does not show any COURTESY.

(WORD 2) is a trait that someone who is (WORD 1) is lacking.

Incorrect Answers:

A – RUSTIC means “rural” and POIGNANT means “evoking sadness.” These two words are unrelated.

B- TERSE means “abrupt” and CYNICAL means “distrustful of sincerity.” These two words do not have a strong relationship.

D – PERPLEXITY can refer to a state of confusion and SUSPENSE can refer to a state of anxiety about the future. Both words refer to a state a person may be in, but do not describe a relationship between these traits.

E – FORECAST and ADAPT do not have a strong relationship.

 

 

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Continue Practicing with Full CCAT Practice Tests


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Which Companies Use the Criteria Cognitive Ability Test?

Criteria's CCAT is used by many companies to assess applicants' cognitive abilities. The Criteria Cognitive Aptitude Test is one of the most popular cognitive ability tests in the US and around the world. Here are some of the companies requiring this test.

Main Companies Using the CCAT
Vista Equity Partners Crossover TIBCO Misys Infoblox
Granicus Ping Identity  Cvent Telarix Mitratech
MediaOcean Superion Market Track TSYS Aderant
Vertafore Xactly PowerSchool Omnitracs EAB

CCAT Test Scores Explained

Time to take a deeper look into how the CCAT scores are calculated.

In short, the CCAT takes your raw score (number of correct answers,) and then converts the raw score into a percentile ranking (your score compared to all other test takers.)

You will additionally be graded per each individual sub-category, including; logic and math, verbal ability, and spatial reasoning. This is important, as each subcategory highlights an additional aspect of your capacity and skillsets, as they relate to the position at hand.

  • Logic and Math – This segment dives into your analytical thinking and ability to take advantage of numerical concepts in your work.
  • Verbal Reasoning – In this section, you show off your attention to details, the comprehension of words, constructive thinking, and reasoning skills.
  • Spatial Reasoning – Here you show you can problem solve, have the ability to make spatial judgments, and visualize.

All the above factor into your score range, which indicates your competency in the field for which you are vying.

It's important to note that each profession has its own score range for job consideration. For instance, currently, those looking to go into accounting and finance will be automatically disqualified by scoring anything less than a 24, while a front desk position starts from a score of 18. Remember, scoring at the bottom of the range may not be enough, make sure you come in ready to overcome the competition.

Take for example the applicant Lisa, who scored a 24 in the CCAT exam. She would be eligible for most positions, depending on her competitors' scores:

CCAT Scores Range by Position

 * We recommend using desktop.

 Source: CriteriaCorp, sample score report

Lastly, it is unadvisable to aim to answer all the questions correctly, as only 1% of test-takers can successfully accomplish this. Instead, focus on what you know and give a solid guess on what you don’t, so you can move on. Don’t get stuck too long on a question, as this will decrease your ability to land in a higher percentile.


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I was very hesitant to purchase a prep pack, but I can tell you that the practice tests and the information was very helpful. The tests within the prep felt more challenging than the actual CCAT that I took.

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See the Full CCAT practice test PrePack™ that Includes 900+ Practice Questions >> 

 

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