Free Situational Judgement Test (SJT) Practice Questions

Here you’ll find situational Judgment test practice questions and answers with tips for passing, and learn more about exam types, formats, and scores.


What Is the Format of A Situational Test Question?

A situational test may occur in an office, a plant, or a shop. Within that situation, there are several possible scenarios that will be presented to you one by one.

As a result, it will be your job to determine the best course of action based on the available options. In many cases, you'll be asked to choose from a few possible answers that range from the least desirable to the most desirable. The setting of the scenario will change after a few questions.

SJT Tests can be presented in many forms: On paper, computer, video, and audio format.

The goal is to make the situation as real as possible so sometimes questions will be animated or include real-life actors.

 

FREE SJT Practice Questions

 

Sample Question 1 - Managerial SJT

1. You are managing a department that includes 2 small teams of 3 people, each of which has a supervisor. One of the teams schedules a meeting with you, in which the team members complain that their supervisor has inconsistent responses to their work. They are unsure about how they are expected to work, and feel criticized for unclear reasons. They have tried to discuss the issue with their supervisor in the past, but feel that nothing has changed. They feel uncomfortable to talk to him again about the situation, and ask for your help.

How would you respond to their request?

A. They shouldn't have gone behind their supervisor's back like this. You decide to tell them that you are sorry that they feel this way, but they should speak directly to their supervisor about this.

B. Ask the team how they think their supervisor can improve. Encourage an open discussion to raise ideas that can help him improve, and then present them to him in a one-on-one meeting.

C. You want to help the team but also not hurt the supervisor's feelings, so you send him to a supervisor training course without telling him your reasons.

D. Speak openly to the supervisor, that you have received a complaint about his methods and suggest that he pays more attention to his responses to his team.

E. Talk to the supervisor. Ask how he feels about his relationship with his team members and suggest ways to improve his communication with them.
Answer

Core competency: encouraging employees’ development
Secondary competencies: effective communication, supervising and monitoring performance, responsibility for subordinates


Explanation: In this question, you are facing a conflict between the need to maintain the chain of command and your responsibility for your subordinates. In this case, your subordinates are the supervisor and his employees.

In response A you turn down the employees and choose to maintain the chain of command. In this particular situation, this response is not preferred as the employees tell you that they have tried to talk to their supervisor. Indeed, you can ask them to try again to discuss the situation with the supervisor before turning to you, but this is not what the answer choice says – in this response, you simply send them back without any solution.

Response B gives too much power to the team. While you may decide to hear their complaints, they shouldn’t be in the same position as you are. Discussing ways for the supervisor to improve with the team without giving the supervisor a chance to be heard is leaving him out of the loop, and ignoring the chain of command.

Sending the supervisor to a course (response C) is not direct enough. Being sent to a course doesn’t send out a clear message that there is a problem, and even if the supervisor does understand that there is a problem, he won’t know what exactly it is. The supervisor is not informed that there is a problem and is unlikely to correct it (two competencies are lacking here: supervising performance and effective communication).

Response D is direct and open. This could have been a great response, but there are two things missing: asking the supervisor about his point of view, and suggesting or discussing ways for improvement (effective communication, encouraging development). As it is, this response leaves the supervisor with the complaint and without any clear options for change.

Response E is the only one which includes all of these factors: hearing the employees and the supervisor (responsibility for subordinates) speaking directly to the supervisor about the problem (effective communication), and suggesting ways to improve (encouraging development, supervising performance).

Best response: E

 

 

The competencies in this domain refer to candidates' ability to motivate other people, to create an atmosphere of cooperation between people and to inspire people to be creative and committed to a vision.

 

Sample Question 2 - Administrative SJT

2. You are an administrative assistant to Jim, the CEO of a large firm in the digital marketing business. You have a large list of tasks to complete, including scheduling Jim’s appointments, summarizing reports for him to read, sifting reading material according to his preferences, answering his emails, and coordinating the renovation of the office. Jim enters the room and asks you to schedule a last minute business trip to China for next week. Planning and scheduling the trip will take a few hours, and you are concerned that you might not meet the deadlines for all of your tasks.

What is the least and most effective response to this situation?
Mark “Best” next to the most effective response and “Worst” next to the most ineffective response.

A. Trust that Jim knows what’s best, and be positive. Try to meet the deadlines for planning the trip as well as all the other tasks.

B. Tell Jim you will start working on the trip as soon as possible; ask Jim to help you set priorities for the other tasks you need to accomplish.

C. Tell Jim that you won’t be able to plan and schedule the trip, as you have yet to finish your other tasks.

D. Put your other tasks on hold for a while so that you can plan the trip.

 

Answer

The correct answers are B - Best and C - Worst.

Primary: Working under supervision; prioritization
Secondary Competencies: Flexibility

Correct responses: Most Effective: B; Least Effective: C

Explanation:
This question seeks to test your ability to work alongside a supervisor and how you do so in the context of prioritizing your tasks. The key to solving this question is identifying the response that achieves this balance. This will be the most effective response. Meanwhile, the response which neglects to solve the problem effectively is the least effective one.

In response A, you are trying your best to complete your tasks, but you are not acknowledging the prioritization problem that you have encountered, and you are not putting in any effort to solve it (low prioritization ability). You also trust your supervisor instead of communicating the problem to him. This shows a lack of ability to work with supervision. Note that supervisors are not perfect. They might not always be aware of the status of your other tasks and could potentially make mistakes. An effective means of communication with the supervisor can make work much more effective.

Response B is the most effective response. Here you are acknowledging the urgency of the task at hand -- by agreeing to work on booking the flight right away -- and are asking Jim for further information on how to prioritize the rest of your tasks. This shows good prioritization skills. By communicating effectively and openly with the supervisor, you are showing good working with supervision skills and will likely be able to solve the prioritization problem effectively.

Response C is the least effective response. At first glance, it may seem like a positive thing that you are doing everything you can in order to complete your other tasks. However, you are unable to recognize the urgent priority of booking the flight immediately, thus showing a lack of prioritization ability and a lack of flexibility.

Putting your tasks on hold in order to book the flight (response D) is not a bad response. It demonstrates that you understand the urgency of the task at hand and that you can prioritize in order to complete it. Note, however, that you are requested to select the most effective response. Since response D shows less communication with the supervisor and less thoroughness in the prioritization process, it is less effective than response B.

 

There are different types of SJT Questions: 

1. Choosing one response from a list of 3–5 response options.

2. Choosing the best and the worst responses to the given situation from a list of 3–5 response options.

3. Ranking: Ranking all responses on a scale of effectiveness.

4. Rating: Rating all responses on a scale of effectiveness.

 

 Sample Question 3 - Customer Service SJT

3. You have made plans to go out with friends after work to celebrate your friend’s birthday. You have spoken with your supervisor in advance and asked to leave early. However, just before you leave you see that a group of customers has entered the store and there is only one team member to serve them.

What would you do?

A. Go meet my friends; it's an important occasion and I have arranged everything in advance.

B. Call my friends and let them know that I will be late, then stay for an extra 15 minutes and help my colleague.

C. Apologize to my supervisor and suggest that I put in the extra time tomorrow.

D. Call my friends and say that something has come up. Stay and help my colleague until all the customers leave, and if I still have time - go meet my friends.

 

Answer

Best response: B
Subject: Personal needs vs. company needs
Competencies: Teamwork, prioritization

Explanation: In this question, you are presented with a conflict between your personal needs and the needs of your company or team. A good guideline to answering this type of question is to look for a balance. You want to show devotion to your employer, but not neglect your personal life or other commitments you have made. This question assesses teamwork and prioritization. Let’s see how these competencies are demonstrated in the answer choices.

Answer choice A shows an unwillingness to adapt to your team’s needs.

Answer choice B balances your personal needs and commitments with those of your team and colleague. Therefore, this is the best answer choice for this question.

In answer choice C you think about your colleague’s situation, but the solution you offer is ineffective – the stress your teammate is facing is happening now; the time you will put in tomorrow won’t help them with this problem.

The response in answer choice D is too extreme. You neglect your commitment to your friends and fail to create a balance between your needs and the team’s needs.

 

The common SJT category competencies for customer service, sales, and call center jobs are communication skills, interpersonal skills, cognitive skills, personality traits, and attitudes. You can more information about each of the competencies in the customer service SJT test pdf guide that is included in our prep pack.

 

Sample Question 4 - Supervision SJT

4. Your team is well behind on deadlines. Everyone is making an effort, working fast and staying extra hours to close the gap. Coffee breaks are kept to a minimum, as people try to stay at their desks and work. After a team meeting about the subject, Donald, the newest team member, apologizes to you and says that due to his inexperience he doesn’t manage to meet deadlines and feels that he is keeping the team behind and is letting you down.

Which are the best and worst responses to begin with?

A. Encourage Donald, telling him that it’s not his fault and that you are confident that he will catch up shortly.

B. Take off some of Donald’s workload.

C. Assign one of the team members to tutor him.

D. Talk with him and try to determine what areas he has difficulties with.

E. In the next team meeting, bring up the subject of new team members and ask the team for ideas on how to compensate for their slower work in their first few weeks.

Answer

Best response: D, worst response: C
Core competency: encourage employees’ development
Secondary competencies: decision making, persistence and optimism


Explanation: In this scenario, you have a team which is under stress and an employee who is feeling guilty and unhelpful. Your goal is to find a response that addresses these factors: helping the employee feel more competent without hindering the team’s efforts.

Encouraging the employee (response A) can help him feel better, but it may miss the core issue if the employee indeed has trouble with some of his tasks. This response is appropriate, and it would have been even more accurate if it would have said that you chose to do this and not take further action because of the tight schedule.

Taking off some of Donald’s workload (response B) doesn’t help any of your goals. In fact, it’s counterproductive: you lost Donald’s help - however small - in meeting deadlines, and you make Donald feel incompetent by choosing to give up on his work. This response lacks persistence and optimism.

Assigning a team member to tutor Donald (response C) is a good idea in general. However, in the current situation you would be putting an additional task on one of your other employees. This response shows flawed decision making. Because eventually this response would be the most harmful to the current team effort, we chose it as the worst response.

Determining the employee’s difficulties (response D) is the first step in deciding how to move forward. For example, you can correct him if you see that he has some misunderstandings about work procedures; decide to wait until the pressure is off and then tutor him; or assign him different tasks for a while. Discussing the problem shows good decision making. It also aims to encourage the employee’s development. We chose this response as best.

Discussing the matter in a team meeting (response E) could be beneficial if done properly. However, this response is not the best as it doesn’t provide an immediate solution to the problem. Moreover, the discussion is meant to find a solution to the problem of working with new employees in general, but it doesn’t include an attempt to understand Donald’s specific situation.

 

 

Decision-making is one of the most important competencies for supervisors. It regards candidates' ability to make well-informed and effective decisions while considering the expected implications, including under conditions of uncertainty, limited information, or unpleasant consequences.

Another component of this competency is strategic thinking – being able to consider the long-term and wider picture when making decisions. This competency also includes the ability to use input from other relevant people, including consultation with subordinates, managers, and colleagues

 

 

Sample Question 5 - Graduates SJT

5. You have recently joined a big accountancy firm as an accounts trainee. You have been assigned several tasks, including vendor invoices, paying bills, and creating invoices for numerous clients. You are therefore committed to several deadlines. An experienced partner in your team, with whom you usually have lunch, approaches you. He asks you to join him at a conference next week as a representative of the company, presenting detailed information regarding the exclusive services your firm has to offer. This would be a great learning opportunity for you, but it will keep you out of the office for two whole days.

What would you do in this situation?

Please rank the responses below on a scale of 1 to 5 with 1 being what you are most likely to do and 5 being what you are least likely to do.

A. Skip the opportunity, as you must meet your deadlines and feel that, as a trainee, you are not yet qualified to represent the company in such a situation. Make a note to yourself to be more prepared for such an opportunity in the future.

B. Thank your partner and agree immediately to go, as this is a great opportunity. Try to move some of your deadlines and ask your fellow trainees to help you prepare for the conference.

C. Agree to go. Work extra hard during the weekend to meet all your deadlines and put in a few extra hours to prepare yourself adequately for the conference.

D. Thank your partner for his offer and try to find out more about your expected role in the conference. Then, figure out if you can meet your deadlines before the conference, and if you can, notify the partner you will join him.

E. Thank your partner and agree to go. Delegate your tasks equally among your fellow team members so you won't overload one individual person with all your tasks and ensure these will be completed in time.

Answer

Primary competencies: Decision making

Secondary competencies: Organizational thinking; Conscientiousness; Achievement striving

The correct ranking is: 4 → 3 → 1 → 2→ 5

Explanation

This situation focuses on prioritizing your tasks and making an educated decision. When expected to make a decision, the best way to go about it is to weigh your options, prioritize your tasks, and consider the implications of each response.
Let's consider each response individually:

Response #1: This response does not necessarily indicate an in-depth consideration of options, but it demonstrates an inclination to make choices based on what is in the best interest of the company. Although you don't demonstrate superior decision-making skills, this response indicates other positive aspects of your personality. This is not a classic positive response, but it is definitely not a bad one either.

Response #2: You agree immediately to your partner’s suggestion, without considering the results. By doing so, you fail to contemplate your options and prioritize your tasks. You take your colleague’s help as a given and put your own personal development above company deadlines and obligations. This is a negative response choice.

Response #3: In this response, you demonstrate ambition and determination as you are willing to work extra hard to complete your obligations and prepare adequately for the conference. However, you agree to attend the conference without re-evaluating your obligations and ensuring you will be able meet all your deadlines in time.

Response #4: In this response, you show an ability to re-evaluate your obligations and prioritize your tasks. Only then do you make an educated decision based on the information you have collected. This is a positive response choice that displays excellent decision-making skills and conscientiousness. You not only prioritize, but you do so well, by taking responsibility for your previous commitments.

Response #5: You agree to go, and you delegate your responsibilities to your colleagues. By doing so, you not only display a lack of consideration and prioritization of your tasks, but also towards your work colleagues, who are now expected to complete your workload. You don’t ask your colleagues for help; rather you delegate your tasks and expect them to complete them according to your deadlines without consideration of their responsibilities. This shows incomprehension of your position and organizational hierarchy as you are not in a higher position than your colleagues and should not be taking upon yourself to delegate your tasks to them. You prefer your own personal development over company deadlines and over team effort. This is a very negative response choice.

Responses three and four are both good responses. Response four is better than response three, as you first ensure you can meet your deadlines, rather than agree to attend and attempt to meet your deadlines after.

Responses two and five are both negative responses, as you put your personal development above company deadlines and obligations. Response five is worse due to the inconsideration of work colleagues and incomprehension of position and organizational hierarchy.

Response one is ranked three, as this is not a bad response, but not a good one either.

 

 

In rating questions you are asked to rate all responses on a scale of effectiveness. For example: 'Please rate the effectiveness of the following options when responding to the situation outlined above on a scale of 0 (ineffective/counterproductive) to 5 (highly effective)'. Here you will be able to use each rating more than once to describe the various responses.


Situational Judgment Test Answers Table

1 2 3 4 5
E B,C B D,C 4-3-1-2-5


Need more practice? Challenge yourself with more free situational judgment test practice questions.


Situational Judgment Test Tips

Here is a list of SJT tips to help you pass:

  1. Consider each scenario and possible response carefully before answering. Though one answer choice may seem appropriate, another may make more sense.
  2. Read about the employer. Companies usually publish an agenda or highlight in their publications their views on service and sales. Try to find out the competencies that are highly valued by the employer in the position you are applying for. Usually, you can find these on company pages that discuss the company's values, and vision.
  3. If the question asks you to rank the responses, compare them to each other. However, keep in mind that all the responses may be effective or they may all be ineffective - your task is to rank the responses, not decide if they are right or wrong.
  4. Identify response patterns and pay attention to nuances. If you make decisions with conviction, but fail to get everyone's buy-in first, are you a team player or are you a leader? Those are the types of personality traits that situational judgment tests are designed to measure.
  5. Read the instructions carefully. There are different formats for situational judgment tests, so the one you are taking on the real test may differ from the practice tests you have taken. 

FAQs

How SJT Tests Are Scored?

The SJT is a computer-based test, so you will get your score immediately after completing it.

Based on the marks you received for each correct answer, you will be given a raw score, which is then further broken down into scores for each competency that the test aims to measure, revealing your strengths and weaknesses.

Next, your score is compared to those of previous candidates, referred to as 'norm groups' and to the norm group average.

So to improve your chances of success you must score higher than average and better in comparison to the candidates who applied for the same position.

Where are Situational Judgment Tests Used?

Situational exams are used in schools, and in the public and private sectors. Here are some examples:


Civil Service

Many federal and local agencies use civil service situational judgment tests as part of their hiring process including firefighters, police, FBI agents, and more.


Medical Field

The Association of Medical Colleges uses the AAMC SJT.

Also, Altus is using Casper situational judgment test as part of its Altus suit to assess candidates' communication and social skills. Its SJT med tests have two sections (typed with 6 scenarios and video response - 9 scenarios).

In these types of SJT tests, medicine is usually the subject matter.


Financial

Both Deutsche Bank and Morgan Stanley use situational judgment tests as part of their hiring process as well as other types of companies such as Procter and Gamble.

 

Learn about the Different SJTs

Click below to find out more information about SJTs and practice with our full-length practice pack:


note

If you are looking for a different test, or are not sure which test is relevant for your position, please  contact us, and we will do our best to ensure you get the most accurate preparation for your upcoming assessment.

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