Computerised adaptive testing (CAT) is the latest technology that is revolutionising the world of psychometric testing. Traditional testing asks a candidate questions A through Z, and then produces a score based on their answers. However, this is not always particularly efficient. Depending on their ability level, test takers are going to end up answering questions that are either far too hard and they are guaranteed to get wrong —or far too easy and guaranteed to get right. Adaptive testing avoids these pitfalls by dynamically selecting questions from a database based on the candidate’s responses. Because it asks candidates questions closely matched to the candidate’s ability level, adaptive testing, offers numerous benefits over traditional testing.
- Tests are shorter: Perhaps the biggest advantage of CAT is that it makes candidate testing faster than ever before. Online psychometric assessments are already fast because they can be automatically delivered to many candidates at once. But because CAT targeted to the ability of the candidate, there are far less superfluous questions, and consequently less questions. The data shows that adaptive testing is typically 50% faster than a standard test, while still achieving higher precision. And as anyone in HR knows, shorter tests make for happier candidates.
- Tests are more accurate: Adaptive testing is often more precise than traditional testing methods, and is especially good at identifying candidates who lie at either extreme of ability. Because of this, it far outstrips traditional testing at differentiating between the fine differences which exist amongst the top scorers. Conversely, traditional testing is good at accurately categorising candidates in the mid-range, but increasingly loses precision as results get more extreme.
- It’s harder to cheat: Psychometric testing has gotten increasingly sophisticated to the point where it’s hard to gain – but not impossible. Someone could conceivably get a hold of the questions, and calculate how to answer. But the beauty of adaptive testing is that no two candidates are given the same test, so they can’t give one another a heads up on what questions to expect from it.
Technological advances are making pre-employment screening more accurate than ever, and at Talegent we are committed to sharing these advances with recruiters. Talegent is about to update our platform with the latest adaptive testing technology, so you can ensure that your recruitment stays on the cutting edge.