Employment Typing Tests: Practice, Info & Tips

What is an Employment Typing Test?

Typing tests are used to measure how quickly and accurately you can type in a given amount of time. Speed and accuracy are the key factors for determining your WPM (words per minute).

Once a passage is presented, candidates have a given amount of time to type the passage as quickly and accurately as possible. Once the time is up, the test is immediately scored and candidates or employers can view and analyze the results.

As more companies are requiring typing tests during the pre-employment process, it's important to know where your typing abilities rank, so you know if it's necessary to improve your skills or to work on maintaining them. 

What Is Assessed on an Employment Typing Test?

Accuracy and Words Per Minute

Typing accuracy means being able to type words and sometimes characters (symbols and numbers) correctly. This might sound simple, but most typing tests only consider a word to be a unit of five characters or more.
For example, the word "typed" would count as one word because there are 5 characters, the phrase "type quick" would count as two words because there are 10 characters (including the space), but the phrase "the" would not be counted because it is only 3 characters. However, typing accurately is only half the battle; speed is the other component to increasing WPM count.


Speed means being able to quickly type the correct passage. However, there are two different measurements of typing speed: gross and net typing speed. Gross typing speed refers to the total amount of words typed, including errors. Net speed is the total amount of words typed after the deduction of errors.

Jobs That Use Typing Tests During the Hiring Process 

Typing tests are typically given out to candidates during the pre-employment process as this is a way for employers to distinguish between qualified and unqualified candidates.

Different professions require different typing skills. Some jobs are more concerned with overall speed while others focus on accuracy, and some jobs require both categories to be near perfect.

What is the passing score for typing test?

These are average WPM scores of different professions:

  • Clerical and administrative jobs: 35-40 WPM
  • Federal civil service jobs: 40 WPM
  • Typist: 50 WPM
  • Legal secretary: 50-60 WPM
  • Computer coders: 60 WPM
  • Transcription: 60-75 WPM
  • Data entry: 70-75 WPM
  • 911 operator test: 80-85 WPM
  • Stenographer: 200 WPM (they use a stenotype)


Keep in mind that some of these jobs have different typing levels within them (beginner, intermediate, advanced) and that the average adult types 40 WPM.

Our typing test preparation package has a variety of texts and test lengths to choose from, ensuring you receive the best preparation possible. 

Typing certification

Typing certification can be beneficial for those who need to verify their typing credentials frequently (typists, court reporters, stenographers, freelance writers, or secretaries).

Most jobs will only acknowledge certification results from a typing test that was 5 minutes or longer.

This is because 5 minutes of typing gives employers a better and more accurate account of your typing skills versus 1-minute long typing tests. Additionally, some state departments only accept 5-minute typing test results that are a minimum of 40 WPM or more.

Word Typing Test Format

Most typing tests are formatted similarly; however, not all typing tests are the same. Typically, they differ in the text they use, the duration of the test, and the way errors are corrected and counted.

The Text

The passages on typing tests can vary, sometimes the passage will reflect the job position and company while other passages are randomly selected. Another aspect of typing tests is that some passages only focus on letters and punctuation while other passages include letters, punctuation, numbers, and symbols.

The Duration

Another aspect of typing tests is the duration; typical typing tests are either in 1, 2, 3, 5, or 10-minute increments. However, something to keep in mind is that if you're using your typing test results for employment purposes, most employers will only accept results from a test that is 5 minute or longer. Longer typing tests are preferred because it gives employers a more accurate account of someone's typing skills.

The Mistakes

Some tests do not allow you to use backspace which prevents you from correcting an error, while other tests will not let you precede unless the error is corrected. This being said, it is very important to read the directions of each test.

JobTestPrep took all of these components into account when creating the typing test preparation package.

Word Typing Test Tips

 It's always a good idea to brush up on your typing skills.

Here are several ways you can improve your typing score.
  • Familiarize yourself with the keyboard
  • Use all your fingers instead of peck typing (using one or two fingers)
  • Read the test directions and know how you can correct errors, if at all
  • Practice before taking the typing test
  • While taking the test, try to read a word or two ahead
  • Try not to look at the keyboard
  • Pace yourself if you're taking a longer typing test
  • Sit up and set your hands to home row position (place your left index finger on the "F" key, middle finger on the "D" key, ring finger on the "S" key, and your pinky on the "A" key. Now, place your right index finger on the "J" key, your middle finger on the "K" key, ring finger on the "L" key, and your pinky on the "semicolon" key)


How To Pass a Typing Test For a Job?

JobTestPrep's customized Typing Test PrepPack™ focuses on a typing test simulation.

In addition to the simulation, we have provided you with information regarding test content, typing certification, jobs that use typing tests, along with their specific requirements, and typing tips; all of which will help you pass a typing test.

Start preparing for your typing test today with JobTestPrep's customized Typing Test PrepPack™.

Now You're Ready to Start!

Get The PrepPack™ and Ace Your Word Typing Test!


Typing test and other trademarks are the property of their respective trademark holders. None of the trademark holders is affiliated with JobTestPrep or this website.