The Difference Between Verbal and Non-Verbal Reasoning

The Difference Between Verbal and Non Verbal Reasoning

Verbal and non-verbal reasoning are often used in assessments. Whether this be for school or university places, or for jobs. It is perceived, but necessarily true, that they are thought to give a better indication of natural intelligence. Used incorrectly it is perceived that they are harder to be specifically prepared for so removes the effect of tutoring or poor-teaching. What they do offer is a better insight into the way an individual may think, and organisations can see whether this means they will be a constructive addition to their organisation.

Verbal and non-verbal assessments are used in an application process to gain a better understanding of the individual’s personality, communication style, and overall potential fit. We look generally at the importance of critical thinking here and how to develop this in your child. Verbal assessments are typically used to assess the candidate’s communication skills, while non-verbal assessments allow employers to gauge the candidate’s body language and how they react to certain situations or scenarios. The results of these assessments are then used to determine if the individual is a good fit for the role. By using verbal and non-verbal assessments, employers are able to have a better understanding of the candidate and their potential for success in the role.

What Is the Difference Between Verbal and Non-verbal Tests?

Verbal reasoning uses language to draw conclusions. It relies on verbal cues and interpretive thought processes to interpret data and come to conclusions. In contrast, non-verbal reasoning does not rely on language to draw conclusions. It involves the use of logic and patterns to interpret and interpret data.

Non-verbal reasoning is used in a variety of disciplines, including mathematics, engineering, economics, and computer science. Non-verbal reasoning often requires abstraction and deduction in order to draw conclusions or make decisions.

Verbal reasoning is often used in communication, as it relies on the use of language to express ideas. It is also used in persuasion and negotiation, as it allows people to explain their point of view and influence others.

The difference between verbal and non-verbal reasoning is that verbal reasoning relies more on language and interpretive thought processes, whereas non-verbal reasoning relies more on logic and patterns. Verbal reasoning is often used in communication and persuasion, whereas non-verbal reasoning is used in fields that require abstraction and deduction such as mathematics and engineering.

Example of a Verbal Reasoning Question

A very simple example of a verbal reasoning question is below:

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The above is taken from

It follows a similar style to most, a paragraph of test followed by multiple choice answers (for ease of marking). It looks similar to comprehension or logic tests. You can see how it provides a lot of information, deliberately in an inconvenient format, and asks the candidate to pull out the key messages. As no candidate will have seen the information before it is presumed that it removes any advantage. But, as we will see, it is possible to practice these and learn how to do better at them. The thing to appreciate is that this is analogous to many managerial jobs which require reading reports and pulling out key information.

Example of a Non-Verbal Reasoning Question

Non-verbal reasoning questions can take far more forms. The main difference is that there is no language involved. They look more at looking for patterns or problem solving. These relate to roles such as areas of trading or engineering. The most common type that you have possible seen is which is next in sequence, or which is the odd one out. An example is below:

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The above is taken from:

The answer is E as both ‘flags’ are on the same side.

They can get far more complex than this and take a range of styles.

Tips for Preparing

Quite simply the best way for your child to prepare for these is to do lots of them. And then do some more. The reason is for both verbal and non-verbal tests, the same questions come up continuously. Familiarity will mean that common styles of questions, and mistakes, will become apparent. There are many resources that will do this. Ranging from books of questions to websites. Some of which are free and some of which require a subscription. If you know which assessment you are preparing for, there are many resources that have past-paper questions in them and therefore will be very specific.

Generally though, board games are a fantastic indicator for children, as are some computer games.

Final Thoughts on Helping Your Child Prepare for Assessment Tests

This is a parenting website, so we have deliberately not focussed on the different types of tests. Hopefully, we have made you aware that it is possible to prepare for these. In my experience of these, I am submitted to them for advisory roles, and we use them for recruitment in some organisations I work with, they tend to differentiates between able candidates which ones have prepared the most. At the end of the day, that willingness to work hard is the main thing that employers are looking for. There might be 100 candidates, 50% of them are not able to do the activities due to education, but it allows sorting out the top 20% of the others to then do further assessments based around interviews and other forms of assessment. As a parent is make sure that you provide emotional support, but also practical support, as during any offer exams, with cups of tea and the occasional words of encouragement.