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How to Prepare for the SHL Verify G+ General Ability Test – Ultimate 2024 Prep Guide

Nov 16, 2023

What Is the SHL General Ability Test?

The SHL General Ability test is one of the most widely used aptitude tests in recruitment. It measures core competencies that are needed in higher-level roles, specifically looking at things like logic, analysis, and reasoning.

SHL as a company creates and publishes dozens of different tests for many different purposes, from personality assessments like the Occupational Personality Questionnaire to job simulations, skills assessments, and a variety of cognitive assessments. 

The tests are available in more than 40 languages and administered to prospective employees in over 150 countries.

The SHL General Ability test is referred to as the Verify G+ test, and there are two different versions currently in use. 

While the content of the questions in both are the same, the way you need to answer them is slightly different, so it is important to understand which version of the test you are working with so that you can prepare properly.

The Verify G+ test is designed to be challenging, as it is used to evaluate ability in reasoning that is needed for upper-level roles, such as managers, supervisors, and C-suite. The combination of a tight time limit and the content of the questions means that preparation and practice are essential for success – most employers want you to be in the 80th percentile to be considered for a role (more on this later).

In this article, you will learn what you can expect from both versions of the SHL Verify G+ test, as well as some example General Ability questions to help you feel more prepared. You will also get some of the best tips and tricks that can be used to help prepare for the assessments. 


What Is Included in the SHL General Ability Test?

Before you delve into the content of the assessment, let’s start with the differences between the two assessments.

The table below shows what the main differences are:



Multiple Choice


Number of Questions



Time Limit

36 minutes

36 minutes







The main difference between the assessments is that the SHL Verify G+ Interactive test involves you moving items on the screen, rather than just selecting the right answer from the multiple-choice options. 

Behind the scenes of the Interactive assessment, there is another big difference – the test is adaptive. That means that the difficulty of the questions that you will face will depend on your performance in the previous question. 

If you answer a question wrong, the next one will be easier. If you answer the question correctly, the next one will be more challenging. This is why there are fewer questions on the Interactive test; SHL can evaluate you faster thanks to the changing difficulty. 

Both tests take place on a computer, and most people will take them remotely, usually at home. 

There are three content areas tested on the SHL Verify G+ assessment. 

These are:

  • Deductive Reasoning  Deductive reasoning in the SHL tests is all about drawing logical conclusions based on incomplete information. This might mean creating a seating plan following declared rules or recognising the strengths and weaknesses in an argument. 
  • Inductive Reasoning – This is a non-verbal logic section, using shapes and figures, where you will need to show that you can find patterns and use them to reach logical conclusions. 
  • Numerical Reasoning – You’ll need to be able to use proper mathematical methods to answer questions based on charts, graphs, and tables. This demonstrates that you can come to logical conclusions using reasoning skills and numerical data. 

There are eight to 10 questions in each section (depending on the version of the test that you are completing.


Example Questions on the SHL General Ability Test

Below you’ll find some example General Ability questions, answers and explanations.


Example Deductive Reasoning Questions

Question One

Statement 1: All birds have feathers
Statement 2: Penguins are birds
Statement 3: Therefore, penguins have feathers.

Is the conclusion drawn from these statements correct?

a) Yes
b) No

The correct answer is: a) Yes

Penguins are indeed birds, and since all birds have feathers (according to Statement 1), it logically follows that penguins have feathers. 

Question Two

You have a deck of 52 playing cards. The deck is divided into four suits: Hearts, Diamonds, Clubs and Spades, with each suit having 13 cards.

Now, consider the following three statements:

If a card is red, then it must be a Heart or a Diamond.
If a card is a face card (Jack, Queen, or King), then it is not a Spade.
If a card is not a face card, then it is a Club.

Based on these statements, can you determine which of the following cards is a face card?

a) Ace of Spades
b) King of Diamonds
c) Jack of Hearts
d) Nine of Clubs

The correct answer is: c) Jack of Hearts

Statement 2 says that if a card is a face card, it is not a spade. The only face card among the options that is not a spade is the jack of hearts.


Example Inductive Reasoning Questions

Question One

Triangle, Square, Circle, Triangle, Square, Circle, Triangle, Square, Circle

What is the next shape in the sequence?

a) Circle
b) Square
c) Triangle
d) Hexagon

The correct answer is: c) Triangle

After every circle comes a triangle.

Question Two

The correct answer is: b)

The pattern here is square and then every subsequent square has one additional rounded corner added to it, until it reaches four rounded corners.


Example Numerical Reasoning Questions

Question One

In a factory, a machine produces 30 widgets per minute. If the machine runs continuously for two hours, how many widgets will it produce in total?

a) 3,600 widgets
b) 6,000 widgets
c) 7,200 widgets
d) 9,000 widgets

The correct answer is: a)

To be able to multiply here, both values need to be the same units (minutes) There are 120 minutes in two hours, so to get the answer multiply 30 (widgets per minute) by 120 minutes in two hours). This equals 3,600.

Question Two

A company's annual revenue for the past five years (in millions) is as follows:

Year 1: $12.5 million
Year 2: $15.2 million
Year 3: $14.8 million
Year 4: $16.5 million
Year 5: $17.9 million

What is the average annual revenue over these five years?

a) $15.38 million
b) $15.0 million
c) $16.2 million
d) $17.0 million

The correct answer is: a) $15.38 million

To get the average, add up all the revenue and then divide by five (the number of years). This gives you $15.38 million.


Access Practice Material With TestHQ

How did you do with the example questions? If you were stronger at some sections over others, focus your practice on where you need it most.

For a huge range of practice material, take advantage of the TestHQ practice tests to access more than 800 questions and answers.

The package includes full solutions and explanations, so you can understand how to get to the correct answer and avoid those dreaded point deductions.


SHL General Ability Scoring

The scoring for the SHL Verify G+ is relatively straightforward. You earn points for each correct answer, and there are no deductions for incorrect SHL general ability test answers or a question that is left unanswered.

These raw scores are then translated into percentiles by using comparison groups. These are specific groups of previous test takers that have a similar role profile to the position that you have applied for. 

They are used as a benchmark to evaluate your skills in comparison to what is required for success in the role.

The most used norm groups are:

  • Graduates
  • Operational 
  • Supervisors
  • Managers

 The SHL software produces a detailed score report that explains each percentile and what that means for the potential employee and their predicted success in the role. 

This score report is not often shared with the test taker, so you might not see it – but it is good to know what the recruiter is getting from the scores.

Each section of the assessment has a percentile, and then there is an overall percentile average of all the scores.

Although each employer will have different requirements, most expect successful candidates to achieve at least the 80th percentile, which means that your score is better than 80% of test-takers in the relevant norm group.

While you might not get to see the score report, you are likely to be given a grade – this goes from A to D and is based on your percentile – a grade A performance is the highest. Even if you do see the score report, you won’t be able to see any details about which SHL general ability test answers you got correct or incorrect. 

SHL will store your score for 12 to 18 months, but you may be able to retest if you reapply for the role later.


How to Prepare for the SHL General Ability Test


Take Practice Tests

Practice tests are an excellent way to prepare for any assessment, and with the SHL Verify G+ there are plenty of good reasons to use practice tests.

Initially, taking a test before you begin revising will help you to pinpoint any weaker areas of knowledge. Knowing where these gaps are makes creating a study plan easier, and by retaking practice tests regularly you can see improvements in your performance.

Secondly, taking practice tests will help you get used to the format, structure, and timing of the test. You will be under pressure when you are taking the real thing, and familiarity can help reduce the stress of the exam situation.

You can find excellent practice tests and other revision resources on TestHQ.


Revise Subject Matter

Once you have a good idea of the areas that you might need to work on, you can focus on improving. 

Revision of basic mathematical operations is a good start, as many of these questions will want you to work with things like decimals, fractions, and percentages as well as multiplication, division, addition, and subtraction.

You might want to practice number series and finding patterns as well – the inductive reasoning section is often the least familiar test type, so the more you revise what the patterns might be, the easier you will find it to recognize them when under pressure.


Do Puzzle Books/Apps

There are numerous ‘brain training’ puzzle apps available on your smartphone, and many are free – so this is an inexpensive way to get those brain muscles working. They tend to focus on logical deductions in a gamified way, which often means you are using reasoning skills without really realizing it.

Puzzles, word searches, crosswords, sudoku and logic puzzles in books are also great exercises for honing those skills and flexing your muscles.


Speak to Those Who’ve Already Done the Test

If you know someone who has recently completed the SHL Verify G+ test, they can be an excellent source of insider information that can really help you on the day. 

You probably won’t be answering the same questions as they did, but their experience is likely to be like yours. 

Other sources of information that might help in a similar way would be online discussion pages like Reddit or similar.


Eat Healthy, Drink Plenty and Rest to Improve Performance

Assessments can put your body and mind under stress, so you should aim to give yourself the best chance for success by eating well, drinking plenty, and focusing on rest.

In the time before the test, make sure that you are eating healthy, nutritious, and balanced meals. Even if you are feeling nervous on the day, getting at least a good breakfast in will help you to curb the hunger pangs, make it easier to concentrate, and fuel your mind.

Hydration is also important – and while you might want the boost of caffeine, don’t forget that just plain water is the best source of hydration and can help settle your stomach.

When it comes to sleep, everyone has slightly different requirements – but it is well known that lack of sleep (or too much sleep) can have a negative impact on your general mental ability so aim for six to eight hours a night where you can.


Frequently Asked Questions


What is the SHL General Ability test?

The SHL General Ability test (also known as the SHL Verify G+ test) is a pre-employment assessment that is often used in recruitment for upper-level roles. The test covers deductive reasoning, inductive reasoning, and numerical reasoning.


What is a good score on the SHL General Ability test?

Scores are translated into percentiles by comparing how you performed in the test to people in similar roles. 

The score you need to get depends on the company you’ve applied for – but in most cases you want to score in the 80th percentile at least.


How do I pass the SHL General Ability assessment?

It’s not about recalling facts or about job knowledge – it’s an assessment of your natural logical and reasoning abilities. 

The best way to pass the test is to work on these abilities, revising principles, and playing brain training games. You can find free SHL General Ability Practice test questions online.


How many questions are on the SHL General Ability test?

There are 30 questions on the multiple-choice version of the SHL General Ability test, and 24 questions on the Interactive. Both versions of the assessment have a 36-minute time limit.


What happens if you fail the SHL General Ability test?

If you do not reach the required score to pass the SHL General Ability test, your application will not be taken further. 

You may have the opportunity to retake the assessment if you reapply for the role later, but this is at the discretion of the recruiter.


How long does it take to get SHL results?

Your test results will be available immediately for the recruitment team, but you might not receive them straight away. 

Some companies will only mention that you have passed (or not), while others will also share the complete score report that they receive from SHL.


How long is a SHL test?

The SHL test contains between 24 and 30 questions, and you will have 36 minutes to answer all the questions, as well as 10 minutes to read the instructions and prepare.


Final Thoughts

As an integral part of the recruitment process for many different job roles in several industries, the SHL Verify G+ test is one of the more common assessments that you should be preparing for, especially if you are looking for an upper-level role.

The test itself is designed to be challenging, with a short time limit and questions that are designed to highlight your ability to make reasoned and logical deductions based on different sources of information and data.

To prepare for the assessment and get the score you need to pass, you will need to practice the test, revise, and ensure that you are getting adequate rest, nutrition, and hydration. With the right preparation, you can ace the test and get the job.

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