The Watson Glaser test is used by many law firms to assess your critical thinking skills. The test is made up of five sections, each assessing a different aspect of critical thinking.
These five sections are:
The tricky part about the Watson Glaser, is that there is no central benchmark for what constitutes a pass mark. What I mean is that whether a law firm progresses you depends on the highest percentile of candidate scores. This means that the benchmark can change every application year.
You also do not find out your scores or which questions you got right. The first time I ever did the Watson Glaser, which was with Clifford Chance, I passed, but I failed with other law firms. But if you follow the guide provided and keep persevering, you will surely succeed.
Some law firms may use their own aptitude test that is similar to the Watson Glaser test.
Reading blogs and guidance, watching YouTube videos and doing practice tests are great tools to make sure that you’re prepared for the test. Job Test Prep is a great resource for this, since they offer a diagnostic Watson Glaser test, 20+ additional practice tests and five interactive study guides. For the best results, it’s important to practice frequently, assess your performance and learn from any mistakes to keep improving.
With some law firms you may be progressed straight to interview stage after passing the initial application stage or Watson Glaser, but for many other firms you will be invited to complete a form of an online work simulator beforehand.
This simulator may be as ‘simple’ as a situational judgement test or may include a launch pad where you will engage in a range of activities. These activities could include aptitude tests, video interviews, gamification, reasoning tests, numerical tests, written exercise, etc., which will not be discussed in further detail.
Firstly, a situational judgement test (SJT) is a psychometric test used to assess a candidate’s decision making and judgement skills. Typically, in SJTs, you will be shown video-based work scenarios, which will involve interacting with lawyers from the firm, as an employee also.
Based on the scenario, you will be given a number of possible actions/responses and be asked to pick the likely response you would take in that situation. You could also be asked to rate how likely/unlikely it is you would do each possible response, or how effective/ineffective each possible response is.
For example: ‘You and your co-worker have been tasked with completing a group project. Your manager informs you both that the project is due in seven days. However, since starting the project, your co-worker has not been doing his share of the tasks and has stopped communicating with you altogether. You also have a lot of other work to complete for other projects and worry this project won’t be completed on time, as a result. What is the best response?’
Your responses will mainly be used to predict possible job performance. It is also used to assess skills like critical thinking, flexibility, customer service, decision making, judgment, perception, communication, and prioritisation.
For more info on SJTs, check out our guide on how to pass Situational Judgements Tests.
You can also access free practice SJTs here.
Law firms, like Ashurst, use game-based assessments as a more interactive and fun way of assessing candidate’s potential. The games typically involve numerical, shape, pattern, memory, or word exercises. For example, you could play a game where you have to figure the code to a safe or guess the next shape formation in a pattern. Another example is matching emotions to a series of pictures of human faces.
Even though assessment games are perceived as more fun, these games can also be just as challenging or even more. Here are three things you should know before completing a game assessment:
You may also have to complete a series of numerical reasoning tests. Numerical reasonings tests measure your ability to logically evaluate numerical information. Thankfully, you do not have to be an expert at maths. You can prepare by familiarising yourself with basic GCSEs maths and taking your time.
In an online work simulator, you may have a few written exercises. In this exercise, it is likely that you will be asked to write an email from the perspective of an employee. Make sure to thoroughly check your grammar and follow professional writing etiquette based on the task.
Finally, there may be a situation where you have to complete a video interview. This could make up your whole assessment or be part of an online work simulator. In this case, these online interviews are not live, and you will be given a few minutes to prepare your answer for the question and answer it.
The nature of the online interview is like any interview, but with the digital aspect there are some things to be aware of. It is likely that your video interview will be assessed by AI, and right now the technology for that isn’t perfect.
Here are a few ways to make sure that you excel in these type of interviews:
Check out our video interview tips.
To conclude, law firms take extremely diverse routes when it comes to further assessments, but they all have the same purpose. Just remember to be yourself and get enough practice!
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