The Caliper Assessment (aka Caliper Profile) is an employment assessment test that measures your personality and cognitive skills. The results of your test are used by potential employers to screen job candidates and tell them whether you are a good candidate for a specific role. It is vital that you prepare for taking the Caliper Profile, which will help position you in front of human resource teams and hiring managers.

The Caliper Assessment is untimed but generally takes between 1-3 hours to complete. There are 180 multiple choice questions, and it measures candidates in seven areas:

  • Leadership
  • Active communication
  • Interpersonal dynamics
  • Decision making
  • Problem solving
  • Process management
  • Self-management

It is important to note that while every test focuses on these areas, the test evaluates your response differently based on the role to which you are applying. The same response to a question might make someone a strong candidate for a management role but would be viewed negatively if they were applying for a nursing role.

Did you know?

There are two main sections in the Caliper Assessment - the personality section and the cognitive section. The assessment measures 21 traits and one type of cognitive ability. Scores are measured against a norm, and hiring entities receive a comprehensive report stating whether applicants are a good fit based on the needs of the position. The test can be taken on a computer or with paper and a black ink pen.

The Caliper Assessment predicts your ability to perform the tasks that will be expected of you in a role. The results of the test may be used throughout your employment. In addition to being used during the hiring process, employers continue to use the results when making decisions on career advancement and team building. The test helps companies develop into high-performing organizations.


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Icon Questions Explained White Caliper Question Types Explained

There are essentially three different types of questions. It is important to note that for the behavioral and personality questions, there are no right or wrong answers. The cognitive portion of the test challenges your abstract reasoning skills, and these questions do have right and wrong answers. 

You must answer all questions before your Caliper profile assessment can be scored. 

Personality Profile Questions

This section of the Caliper personality test measures 21 behavioral traits, which are used by hiring managers to gain an objective view of your strengths, limitations, motivations, work style, and potential. While the answers technically have no right or wrong answer, it’s important to remember that you want your hiring manager to consider you for a position. Therefore, rather than answering each question with your initial response, consider answering these questions as if you are already in the role. 

For example, if you see a question that discusses working while being interrupted by others, consider the role you are applying for and respond accordingly. If you expect to have a number of employees vying for your attention, you will probably want to respond that you don’t mind being interrupted. If you are applying for a role as a data researcher, you would probably want to indicate that you don’t like to be interrupted while working. 

Most/Least Questions

The test begins with two personality questionnaires. In these sections, you are given several statements and asked to select both the one that is most reflective of your beliefs or feelings and the one that is least reflective of you. 

In some of these questions, the statements will be preceded by a statement giving context to your response. 

Your answer sheet will have two responses for each of these types of questions. 

MostLeast
I sometimes have the feeling that I am taking too much responsibility upon me.
I have the ability to persuade people to do almost anything.
I cannot imagine myself lying or cheating.
I seem to enjoy interacting with people more than others do.

Rating Questions

This section contains questions where you are asked to respond based on a scale with either 5 or 7 options. You will be given a statement and asked whether you agree or disagree with options ranging from Strongly Agree to Strongly Disagree. 

Cognitive Ability Questions

The Caliper assessment includes an abstract reasoning section, which measures your ability to think on your feet. Candidates who do well in these sections show that they can see the big picture, learn new skills quickly, detect relationships between ideas, and solve new problems on a regular basis. 

In this section, there are right and wrong answers. To do well on these questions, it’s important to pay close attention to the details. As there is only one right answer, you will frequently be able to eliminate wrong answers and reach the correct response as a process of elimination.  

Number Series

In number series questions, you are asked to identify a missing number. The key to success is recognizing the pattern in the series and selecting the answer that meets the pattern’s parameters.

Practice Solving Some Number Series Problems

This practice drill is not timed; however, we recommended trying to complete it in no more than 5 minutes.

Your goal is to choose the number that completes the series among the given options.


Visual Analogy

In visual analogy questions, you are asked to map the relationship between the first two images, and apply that mapping between a given image and one of the multiple-choice options. The key to success with visual analogies is to identify the pattern and choose the option that fits within that pattern. 

Practice Solving Some Visual Analogy Problems

Try to come up with a logical explanation and find the correct answer based on a single example. The relationship or differences between one pair of elements must be identical to the relationship/differences between a different pair of elements.


Series Completion

You are given a series of shapes where one shape is missing and you are asked to identify which shape belongs in the pattern. You will need to look at the different elements within the series and recognize patterns. It’s critical to take your time in this section as you try to understand the change between the elements in the series. Look for patterns, and try to eliminate options from the answer panel. 

Practice Solving Some Figural Series Completion Problems

Examine a series of elements, which follow a certain logical pattern. Find one answer that could be the next shape of the series, given that it maintains that logical pattern.


Matrix Completion

These questions present you with a table of nine boxes. Eight of the boxes contain an image, and one of the boxes contains a question mark. You need to look for patterns within the matrix to figure out which of the options is the right fit for the matrix. 

Practice Solving Some Figural Matrix Completion Problems

Try to decipher the underlying logical pattern of the matrix and correctly mark the missing element. The logical pattern may be related to the matrix’s rows, columns, diagonals, or a combination of these.

Icon Preparation Strategies White Caliper Preparation Strategies

On the surface, personality tests appear impossible to prepare for. This isn’t math or English, where you can study and practice specific skill sets. However, there are a number of ways you can prepare for the test which will put you in a better position to provide test administrators with the responses that they are looking for. 

Establish the right state of mind for the Caliper assessment

The Caliper test is assessing your fitness for a job. It isn’t measuring whether you are a good person. Come into the test feeling confident. Remind yourself that you are a finalist for the position and the company feels good about you as a potential employee. Feeling confident and self-assured in your skills will come through when answering questions.

Experiment with free online personality tests

Taking practice tests helps remove the stress from the test day experience. You’ll know what to expect and the type of questions you will be seeing. In addition, they provide feedback, which can help you strategize with the types of responses you want to give. 

As much fun as it may be to discover you have the personality of Tom Cruise in Top Gun, that may not be very helpful in your quest to do well on the Caliper. Therefore, make sure to find real personality tests!

For your convenience, we’ve shared links to some free personality tests that provide you with usable feedback. If you only have limited time, click the first link—it provides the most comprehensive feedback and is also most similar to the Caliper profile. 

After completing the test, read through the report. Ask yourself if the traits the test picked up on seem like a good match for the role you are applying for, or if you should have taken a different approach when answering the questions.  

free online personality tests

Work on cognitive ability skills

Take as many cognitive ability tests as you can. The more comfortable you are with these types of tests and the more practice you get, the likelier it will be that you excel at these questions. You’ll be prepared for every type of pattern or series that the test throws at you, and you’ll be in position to generate a top score in this section.


We have the perfect course at iPrep for you to sharpen your figural reasoning skills – access our inductive reasoning test course.

Learn what to expect on the cognitive and behavioral questions

Take time and invest in a Caliper Profile course (like those that will soon be offered by iPrep). You’ll have the chance to take a simulated test, get used to the testing format, and receive feedback on your results. 

You may have heard that you can’t prepare for a personality test. You may have also heard that one should never admit weakness or exhibit negative feelings while taking a test or that one should demonstrate impeccable consistency during the test. Those approaches will often ensure that you fail your test. 

Courses won’t help you change your personality, but they will guide you as to the types of responses to give. It will help you position and frame your answers in a way that demonstrates to hiring managers that you have the right approach to succeed in the role. 

Research the role and adapt your testing to it

Take the time to talk to people working in a similar role and ask them about their experience. Find out what type of personality succeeds in the role you are looking for. When you sit down to take the test, envision yourself in the role, and answer the questions as if you were working in the position and the situation being described as a scenario you are facing. This will help ensure that your business persona comes through in the test results.

Icon Test Features White Test Features

Caliper Assessment Fast Facts (tl;dr)

  • Total of 180 questions
  • Untimed test, but typically takes 1-3 hours to complete
  • Four sections
    • 2 personality test sections
    • 1 behavioral test section
    • 1 cognitive abilities section
  • Assess 21 personality traits and numerous competencies, which are derived from them
  • Tests typically are administered by the hiring company
  • Every question must be answered
  • Test is done on computer or with paper and pen
  • Test is scored relative to a normalized scale (entry-level, managerial, professional, etc.)

Common Names of the Caliper test

The Caliper Profile is the official name of the test. It is occasionally referred to as the Caliper Assessment or the Caliper Personality Test.

Caliper Profile vs. Caliper Quick View

The Caliper Profile is the full version of the test and includes four sections. The Caliper Quick View is a modified version of the test. It contains the behavioral and personality sections of the test but does not include the cognitive abilities section. The Caliper Quick View is typically given to entry-level candidates and takes between 25-60 minutes to complete. 

Caliper Modifications

The questions on the Caliper are the same, regardless of the role that is offered. However, the evaluation criteria for responses is modified based on the role. Candidates applying for a sales position, for example, will see the same questions as someone being evaluated for a customer service representative position, but their responses would be evaluated differently.


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Icon Technical Facts White Technical Facts

Scientifically-Backed Test

The Caliper Profile has been used for nearly 60 years and is viewed by many as the industry standard. The test helps hiring managers identify candidates who are likely to succeed in a role. It uses scientifically validated data to help companies predict future performance, select top talent, and create an environment that enables high-performing teams to flourish. 

Compares Scores To Job Models

The Caliper measures traits, behaviors, competencies, and job fit to job models. The hiring manager or HR team will select the appropriate job model, and results are measured against the baselines of successful professionals. 

There are 21 different traits that are measured by the test. These traits, which are considered more like natural tendencies than ability, indicate your attitude toward work. 

Behaviors measure the actions that you will display on a job. While traits are essentially invisible to others, behaviors are actions that anyone can see. 

Competencies help predict how you will perform in the role. The Caliper has a comprehensive library of 56 different competencies, divided into 7 categories (see next section for more).  As opposed to behaviors that are always on display, competencies often take time to be exposed in a workplace. 

The test combines traits, behaviors, and profiles, and matches them to job models. If your scores match the model, Caliper considers you to be a quality candidate for the role. 

Seven competency areas of the Caliper Profile

Caliper has developed a comprehensive competency library, with 56 different competencies divided into 7 sections. After taking the test, the hiring manager or HR team will have insight into your strengths and weaknesses within the following areas.

Leading

Active Communication

Interpersonal Dynamics

Making Decisions

Solving Problems

Managing Processes

Self-Management

Leadership Maturity

Influence and Persuasion

Interpersonal Sensitivity

Deliberative Decision Making

Creativity and Innovation

Quality Focus

Composure and Resiliency

Leadership Communication

Conflict Management

Helpfulness

Decisiveness

Analytical Thinking

Compliance

Generating and Expressing Enthusiasm

Driving Results

Negotiating

Service Focus

Strategic Thinking

Learning Agility

Response Orientation

Strength of Conviction

Leading Change

Active Listening

Relationship Building

Organizational Citizenship

Scientific Acumen

Safety Focus

Achievement Motivation and Perseverance

Managing Innovation

Communicating

Collaboration and Teamwork

Information Seeking

Business Acumen

Process Management

Self-Awareness 

Managing Quality

Instructing

Organizational Savvy



Time Management

Adaptability

Team Building


Global Mindset



Planning and Priority Setting

Initiating Action

Coaching and Developing Others





Organizing and Documenting Information

Accountability

Delegating





Applying Standard Practices

Professionalism

Fact-Based Management






Continuous Learning

Strategic Talent Management






Extended Task Focus

Directing






Comfort with Ambiguity

Defining Caliper Competencies

Click the “+” sign to explore the definitions of each of the Caliper behavioral competencies.

Leadership Maturity – serves as a role model by demonstrating humility, confidence, and courage in leadership role

Leadership Communication – builds morale and encourages ownership of company mission, goals, and values

Driving Results – motivates others to achieve and exceed goals

Leading Change – creates a vision for change and engaging others

Managing Innovation – creates opportunities by fostering an open environment  

Managing Quality – measures, tracks, and assesses quality work of others

Team Building – enables and encourages team members to work together

Coaching and Development – guides direct reports to improve

Delegating – knows when and how to delegate work to others

Fact-Based Management – makes decisions using all available information

Strategic Talent Management – attracts quality candidates

Directing manages others to ensure organizational goals are met

Influence and Persuasion – influences others to follow their agenda

Conflict Management – addresses problems openly and resolves conflicts

Negotiating – identifies bargaining points and generates win-win solutions

Active Listening – expresses interest in other people’s ideas

Communicating – provides clear, concise information to others

Instructing – displays confidence while explaining concepts to others

Interpersonal Sensitivity – relates to needs of others to achieve productive outcomes

Helpfulness – provides pleasant customer experience

Service Focus – creates customer loyalty through enhanced customer experience

Relationship Building – forges long term relationships based on trust

Collaboration and Teamwork – work collaboratively with others to achieve goals

Organizational Savvy – uses formal and informal communication channels within the organization

Global Mindset – appreciates diversity

Deliberative Decision-Making – gathers relevant information before making a decision

Decisiveness – takes calculated risks even without all information

Strategic Thinking – drives a shared vision of the organization’s vision

Organizational Citizenship – places efforts towards the common good

Information Seeking – driven by underlying curiosity to learn more 

Creativity and Innovation – questions existing practices

Analytical Thinking – grasps underlying concepts and identifies root causes

Learning Agility – discerns patterns in data and recognizes relationships between concepts

Scientific Acumen – implements best practices in scientific inquiry 

Business Acumen – makes sound business decisions based on company’s business model

Quality Focus – ensures that work in one’s area is performed with excellence

Compliance – ensures that teams are compliant with rules and regulations

Response Orientation – assesses situation and acts appropriately during an emergency

Safety Focus – takes steps to protect workers against accidents

Process Management – takes a systematic approach to make workflow more effective

Time Management – focuses on getting tasks done in a timely manner

Planning and Priority Setting – identifies what needs to be done to complete tasks 

Organizing and Documenting Information – produces well-organized documentation that meets required standards

Applying Standard Best Practices – follows best practices to complete tasks

Composure and Resiliency – deals effectively with pressure even under adversity

Generating and Expressing Enthusiasm – motivated by enthusiasm and emotion

Strength of Conviction – stays the course even when outside influences push against them

Achievement Motivation and Perseverance – displays determination to continually improve

Self-Awareness – recognizes their own emotional reactions and thoughts 

Adaptability – shifts course when plans are affected by outside influences

Initiating Action – self-starters who take the lead 

Accountability – accepts responsibility and takes ownership for tasks under their control

Professionalism – sets high standards and serves as role model for others

Continuous Learning – takes responsibility for their own professional development

Extended Task Focus – continues to perform same work function for long periods of time

Comfort With Ambiguity – comfortable working in situations without clear guidelines

Job Models

Caliper has identified commonalities across jobs with similar tasks and objectives. The job models are a set of success criteria. If you score well in the job model, you are likely to perform well on the job. 

There are five categories of job models: 

  • Management – includes marketing leader, sales manager, franchisee, and service leader
  • Sales – includes account development, producer, and agency recruiter
  • Service – includes bank teller, customer service representative, and service associate
  • Technical – includes analysts, financial advisors, and technicians
  • Other – includes educators, HR professionals, and nurses

Your test will be aligned with job models in these categories, and your score will be compared to scores within the job model.

Icon Results Scale & Interpretations White Results Scale and Interpretations

Results are sent to the hiring manager or HR team immediately upon completing the test. You will not have access to your results unless the company chooses to share them with you, but Caliper recommends that employers do not share this information. 

What Is a Good Caliper Profile Score?

Scores range from 1-99 and predict the likelihood of a candidate succeeding in a role. 

  • Scores 80-99 – The candidate is a strong fit with the requirements of the role
  • Scores 60-79 – The candidate will most likely succeed in the position, but may need support in key areas
  • Scores 40-59 – The candidate may experience difficulty performing the tasks required in this role
  • Scores 1-39 – The candidate is unlikely to succeed in the role

These scores are based on a comparison between the answers given on the test and responses from the testing group. 

Source: essentials.calipercorp.com

Additional Data

In addition to the score, employers receive a competency overview, showing how you performed in areas that are important for the role. 

Source: essentials.calipercorp.com

The results also include key findings, which outline the behaviors most likely to impact your success in the prospective position, whether they serve as a strength or pose a challenge.

Source: essentials.calipercorp.com

The report includes information relating to competencies as well, showing your strengths and possible challenges. 

Source: essentials.calipercorp.com

The report closes by sharing scores in the 21 traits that are measured by the test. Each bar shows the percentile rank of how you scored on each trait relative to the appropriate Caliper norm group.

Source: essentials.calipercorp.com

Score Uses

The Caliper Profile is first used to make hiring decisions. However, if you are hired, your employer will always have access to your results. They may be used by others to guide future training or development decisions, used as a tool to see which employees would work well together, and could play a role in future promotions.

Icon Frequently Asked Questions White Caliper Assessment FAQs

What is the Caliper Assessment Test?

The Caliper Assessment test is a screening tool used by companies to see if you are a good fit for the job they are looking to fill. It is also called the Caliper Profile.

What is a Caliper personality test?

The Caliper personality test is part of the Caliper Profile. It asks questions to get a good sense of your personality, so it can see if you would be a good fit for a job.

Can you fail a Caliper test?

Yes and no. There are no grades in the test, so in that sense you can’t fail the test. However, if the test sees that you are not a good fit for the role for which you are applying, you will probably not get the job.

Can I skip questions on the Caliper Profile?

No, you must answer every question before you can submit the test.

How do you pass a Caliper Assessment?

You will want to do three things to improve your chances of being offered a job. First, take practice tests so you are comfortable with the format. Second, when answering questions, put yourself in the role for which you are applying, and answer from that perspective. Lastly, practice cognitive ability questions.

Should I be honest on the Caliper personality test?

You should research the role for which you are applying and tailor your answers to that role. If you decide beforehand to answer all questions in a specific way, in all likelihood the test will screen you out and you will not get the job.

I need to take a Caliper Sales Assessment. Is it different from the regular Caliper Assessment?

The Caliper Sales Assessment is the same test as the regular Caliper. However, the responses it is looking for are those which indicate that you will succeed in a sales role.

Is the Caliper Assessment hard?

The cognitive ability questions may give you a hard time, especially if you are not used to looking for patterns and sequences. Studying those sections will help you improve your scores. The personality questions are not hard, but you will want to give them some thought rather than just write down the first answer that you think of.

Is the caliper assessment timed?

No. The test usually takes between 1-3 hours to complete.

I need to take Caliper Quick View. Is it different from the regular Caliper Assessment?

Yes. The Caliper Quick View is a shortened version of the test and does not include the abstract reasoning section. It is used primarily for entry-level positions and typically takes about 25-60 minutes to complete.

How much does the Caliper Assessment cost?

The Caliper Assessment is free to you. The company that is administering the test pays the fee.

What is a good Caliper score?

A score of 60 or higher indicates that you will most likely succeed in the role. The higher the score, the better. However, the score is not a percentage of correct answers but rather your likelihood of success compared to others.

How can I get my Caliper Assessment test report?

You cannot get a copy of your report unless your employer decides to share the information with you.

How do you do well on a Caliper Assessment?

You will need to do three things to do well on the test. First, practice cognitive ability questions. These are the only questions with actual right and wrong answers. Second, take practice tests like those offered by iPrep to get comfortable with the type of questions you will have to answer. Finally, when answering the questions, picture yourself as someone in the role. Your answers will be better calibrated to the role if you do that.

How do you read Caliper results?

Only the company receives your results. If you would like to see a sample report so you know what they measure, you can click here.

What does the Caliper Assessment measure?

The Caliper Assessment measures the likelihood that you will succeed in a role. It focuses on your personality profile to determine job fit and corroborates the conjecture with a cognitive ability score.

Is the Caliper test given internationally?

Yes, the test is administered all over the world. Results for roles are based on the culture or country where the test is being given.

Icon Tips White Caliper Assessment Test Tips

  1. Research the role you are applying for
    The more you know about the ideal profile, the easier it will be to answer questions as if you are already in the role. 
  2. Practice
    Make sure you are familiar with the types of questions you will be facing. Using a service like iPrep can be invaluable in preparing you for test day. 
  3. Rest up
    Make sure to get a good night’s sleep the night before, and eat a healthy meal.
  4. Remain calm
    This test is designed to let you show employers why you are the best candidate for the job.

Icon Administration White Administration

Test Location: Either at the offices of the company you are applying to or online via a personalized link you will get from the recruiter.

Test Schedule: Tests are scheduled as part of the interview process.

Test Format: Multiple-choice on computer or offline.

Test Materials: Test taken on computer. Bring a black ink pen if the test is taken offline.

Cost: There are no fees for the job candidate.

Retake Policy: Retakes rarely are offered by the hiring company, but there is no policy against it.


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Icon Test Provider White Test Provider

The Caliper Profile test has been administered for almost 60 years and has helped over 65,000 organizations hire the right candidate. 

In 2019, PSI Testing Excellence acquired Caliper. PSI is a worldwide professional testing services provider, administering over 15 million assessments each year. 

Disclaimer – All the information and prep materials on iPrep are genuine and were created for tutoring purposes. iPrep is not affiliated with the PSI, Caliper Corp., or any other company mentioned.

Get to know what the cognitive ability section of the Caliper Assessment will be like by practicing with these sample questions: