MRC LHA & NSHD > NSHD > Cognitive Tests > About the tests

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About the Cognitive Tests (1961)

Test 1: General Ability (Non-verbal)

In this test you have to select the most appropriate image based on the instructions given. These alternate between matching, analogy and sequential reasoning tasks. This is the non-verbal reasoning part of the Alice Heim Group Ability Test (AH4). In the original version there were 65 questions and study members had 10 minutes to answer all questions. The section was preceded by a short practice test.

In this version there are 12 questions and you have 5 minutes to answer them.

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Test 2: General Ability (Verbal)

This is the verbal reasoning part of the Alice Heim Group Ability Test (AH4). In the original version there were 65 questions and study members had 10 minutes to answer all questions. The section was preceded by a short practice test.

There are 12 questions here and you have 5 minutes to answer them.

It was more usual for the verbal reasoning test to be sat before the non-verbal reasoning test. However, in the NSHD the order was reversed, with the picture round coming first.

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Test 3: Reading Comprehension

These tests were used extensively by the Ministry of Education in surveys of reading at the time. In the original version there were 35 questions and study members had 25 minutes.

There are 8 questions here and you have 5 minutes to answer them.

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Test 4: Mathematics

As noted in 1968 by Douglas Pidgeon of the National Foundation for Educational Research in England and Wales, the mathematics test ‘was clearly too difficult’ (Douglas et al, 1968 All our Future p197) however, we have included it here as an example as it was similar to other tests of the time. It was thought that most problems could be solved via mental arithmetic if the underlying principles were understood.

There are 8 questions here and you have 6 minutes to answer them.

In the original version there were 47 questions and study members had 25 minutes.

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For those who are interested the full test and the instruction booklet can be viewed here.

We are sorry but we are not including the answers!