Free Civil Service Test Practice: 2023 Prep Guide by iPREP

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Civil service jobs aren’t simply a career. They are a path to a better life, complete with healthcare benefits, paid time off, stability, and retirement funding. If you’re looking for a job that will take care of you for the rest of your life, civil service jobs are for you. However, before you can get hired, you’ll probably need to pass a civil service test.

Civil Service Test Types
Civil Service Test Types. Source: iPREP

There are thousands of civil service jobs, ranging from the adrenaline pumping FBI or secret service roles to the more sedate postal worker or IRS roles. With so many different types of positions available, there is no single civil service test to cover the federal, state and municipal roles. Regardless of where you are applying, expect your exam to test your verbal, clerical, and mathematical abilities.

Did you know?

The Civil Service Test has a minimum of three sections: (1) verbal ability, (2) math skills, and (3) clerical ability. Some positions may require additional tests. To be added to an eligibility list, you’ll need to score 70%. Top-scoring candidates on the eligibility list are invited in for interviews.

Civil Service Test Types:

  1. Federal exams
  2. State exams (click here for test facts by state)
  3. Municipal exams

Civil Service Test Question Types Explained

Most questions in civil service exams are multiple choice, with either 4 or 5 options for you to choose from.

Verbal Ability

This section measures your word skills. It is used if the job you are applying for involves tasks such as proofreading, editing, organizing files of related materials, and following written instructions.

You can expect the following types of questions:

  • Spelling, word definitions, and word relationships
  • Grammar 
  • Reading comprehension

Clerical Ability

This section measures your ability to handle clerical tasks, and is often timed. It is used for many civil service roles, including those involving police work.

You can expect the following types of questions:

  • Alphabetization
  • Clerical speed and accuracy
  • Keyboarding 
  • Office practices

While most questions in civil service exams are multiple choice, the typing and stenography portion of the exam requires you to accurately type information exactly as it has been presented to you. Scoring of the typing test is based on speed and accuracy. 

Only stenographers need to take the stenography test. To pass the test most agencies require you to take dictation at 80 WPM. 

Civil Service Test Question Types
Civil Service Test Question Types. Source: iPREP

Math Skills

The difficulty of the math exam is based on the role that you are applying for. Some roles, such as cashiering jobs, require basic arithmetic skills, while other roles may require more advanced math skills. 

You may be tested on the following types of math problems:

  • Working with fractions, decimals, and percentages
  • Reading graphs and tables
  • Calculating ratios and proportions
  • Story and reasoning problems, covering areas like work, distance, taxation. and payroll

Additional Skills

In addition, your civil service exam may also assess soft skills, such as decision making, communication skills, service orientation, or memory. For some roles, the exam may test your professional knowledge in areas like legal terminology, safety instructions, or accounting, or challenge specific soft skills, such as principles of social investigation.

Civil Service Test Preparation Strategies

While getting ready for your exam, here are some things you can do to give yourself the best chance of passing the test:

  1. Study the prep manual given by the hiring agency, which will include a detailed description of the test material
  2. Take practice tests, like those offered by iPrep
  3. Determine your weaknesses, and spend more time studying those section of the material
  4. Work with a partner or study group 
  5. Attend a refresher course either in the classroom or online 
  6. Exercise, eat right, and get plenty of sleep the night before the test
Civil Service Test Preparation Strategies
Civil Service Test Preparation Strategies. Source: iPREP

Download Your Copy of the Civil Service Test PDF

IBEW The Application Process
Free PDF

Click here to download

Test Features

United States-based civil service exams fall into one of the three different categories. There are exams for federal jobs, which are managed by the US federal government; state exams, which are managed by each individual state; and local exams, which are managed by each municipality.

It’s important to recognize that each hiring body is subject to different laws and processes. As such, they do have different testing requirements. That being said, civil service tests from all branches of the government have much in common.

Many agencies administer the test online. However, some still use paper question books and answer sheets.

You’ll be tested on your verbal, clerical, and mathematical skills. Each question is multiple choice, and typically features some type of time limit.

You’ll also receive a question booklet or scratch paper, which you can use to work out problems to determine the correct answer.

Tests can be quite long. You should expect your test to last about 3 hours, and contain around 200 questions.

Competitive vs Noncompetitive Tests

For federal government positions, the hiring agency will frequently pit qualified candidates against each other. In these competitive tests, you’ll have a better chance of landing the job if you outscore your competitors.

In a noncompetitive test, you are being tested to determine whether or not you are qualified for the role. If you pass the test, you will show the hiring manager that you have both the aptitude and the ability to perform in the job.

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Technical Facts by State

Over 20-million people are employed by state and local governments, and each state’s exam is created and managed independently. Generally speaking, each state’s Civil Service Department is tasked with creating, scheduling and administering the civil service exam.

We’re constantly updating information about different state’s exams. If your state isn’t listed below, let us know and we’ll make sure it’s included in the next update.

Quick by state navigation links:

CA | CT | IL | LA | MA | NJ | NY | NYC | OH | PA

California (CA) Civil Service Tests & State Jobs Exams

With over 235,000 state jobs, there is no bigger state employer than the state of California. With jobs across the state in every industry, they offer a wealth of opportunity to those who pass their civil services exam.

Administered by: The California Department of Human Resources (CalHR) administers all civil service exams in the state.  

Test Structure: Most tests in California are multiple choice. Tests are based on the position being applied for, and can include: Written, oral, typing, and experience. 

Exam Announcements and Information: Each exam has an exam bulletin, which provides the details of the test, including pass/fail score, the type of test, and content being tested. 

Test Results: Results for online tests appear in your account 3 days after completing the test. In-person exams typically require 6-8 weeks for results to enter the system.  

Passing Scores: Passing criteria for each test is included in the exam bulletin. Individuals who pass a test are placed on an eligible list, where they are considered for open positions. 

Connecticut (CT) Civil Service Tests

Connecticut has over 40,000 people on its state’s payroll.  If you’d like to be part of the team serving the citizens of the state you will need to pass a civil services exam first. 

Administered by: The Department of Administrative Services manages Connecticut’s civil services exams. 

Test Structure: Civil service tests in Connecticut at multiple choice and tailored to the role.

Exam Announcements and Information: In Connecticut tests are only administered when there is an open position. Details of the exam are included in the job listing. 

Test Results and Passing Scores: Candidates who pass the test are added to the eligible list. Top performers on the list are brought in for interviews.

Illinois (IL) Civil Service Tests

Illinois has nearly 65,000 state employees on its payroll, helping ensure that the state runs smoothly. To be considered for a position working for the state of Illinois you will need to pass a civil service exam. 

Administered by: The Department of Central Managed Services (CMS) is responsible for testing in Illinois. Exams are given at testing centers across the state.

Test Structure: There are two types of tests. Most civil services roles require a multiple choice test, which will be customized to the role. Applicants who want to work for state universities take the SUCSS (State Universities Civil Service System) exam, which includes a written test to measure problem solving, reading comprehension, and ability to follow directions. 

Exam Announcements and Information: Exam announcements can be found in job listings on Test takers can also find test information guides which include a number of sample questions, content covered, and different sections within the test. 

Test Results: Most tests are scored immediately, and include a section-by-section breakdown. Other test results are reported by mail, within 5-7 days. 

Passing Scores: All passing candidates are added to an eligibility list. Candidates with “A” scores are interviewed before other candidates. If you did not score an “A” you can retake a test after 30 days to try and improve your grade. Passing scores are valid for up to 6 years. 

Louisiana (LA) Civil Service Tests

Louisiana employs over 45,000 employees across its state. State citizens who are interested in working for the government need to pass a civil services exam before they can get started.

Administered by: The Louisiana Department of State Civil Service manages and administers all civil service exams. 

Test Structure: Most tests are multiple choice and taken on the computer. There are several role-specific tests. They are:

  • Law Enforcement and Protective Services exam (LEAPS) – for entry level law enforcement roles
  • Professional Level Exam (PLE) – for managerial and supervisory roles
  • Office Support Exam (OSE) – for office support staff
  • Accounting Paraprofessional Test (APT) – for accounting-related positions. 

Exam Announcements and Information: Job candidates are expected to take the test before applying for a job. The Louisiana Online Civil Service FAQ page contains a list that shows you which tests need to be taken for various roles.   

Test Results: Test results are delivered by email or mail, usually within a week of completing the test. 

Passing Scores:  Passing scores range from 70-100. Candidates who pass the test are added to the state’s eligibility list, where hiring managers can choose them to come in for interviews. 

Massachusetts (MA) Civil Service Tests

Massachusetts has nearly 65,000 state employees on its payroll, who work hard to ensure that its citizens are taken care of. If you’d like to work for Massachusetts you will need to pass a civil service exam.

Administered by: The State of Massachusetts administers its tests. 

Test Structure: The Massachusetts civil service exam is a multiple choice test given to all civil service applicants. There is also a law enforcement exam, firefighter exam, and maintenance workers exam given to candidates for those roles. These exams may include physical components in addition to the multiple choice test. 

Exam Announcements and Information: The schedule for Massachusetts exams is online, on the website. 

Test Results: Test results are emailed to you as soon as they are available. 

Passing Scores: Typical civil services tests require a 70% to pass. Candidates who pass are placed on an eligible list. Hiring managers review candidates on the list when determining who to hire. 

New Jersey (NJ) Civil Service Test

New Jersey boasts almost 90,000 state employees, providing employment in a wide array of fields. Before being hired, candidates in New Jersey must pass their state’s civil service exam. 

Administered by: Civil service exams in New Jersey are administered by the New Jersey Civil Service Commission (CSC). Tests are given at testing centers across the state. You will receive 2-3 weeks notice detailing where and when your test is scheduled to take place. 

Test Structure: Civil service exams in New Jersey are multiple choice. There are essentially three types of tests:

  • Exams by Role – testing related to a specific position
  • Supervisory Test Battery – work simulation test
  • Management Test Battery – work simulation test
  • Bilingual Skills Testing

Exam Announcements and Information: Civil service exam information is included in the job announcement and on the CSC website

Test Results: Test results are delivered by mail. If you pass, you will receive a notification of eligibility. Candidates who fail receive a notice of ineligibility. 

Passing Scores: Generally, most tests require a 70% to pass the test. Candidates who pass are placed on an eligible list, where they will be assessed by hiring managers and potentially invited in for an interview. 

Civil Service Test Overview Quote
Source: iPREP

New York (NY) Civil Service Tests

There are over 1 million civil service jobs in New York, including police, fire and court officers. Civil service jobs in New York pay wages that are competitive with those in the private sector, which increases the stakes of the civil service exam. Passing the civil service exam in New York State will put you on the eligibility list, where positions are filled from.

Administered by: The New York State Department of Civil Service administers exams for all state civil service tests as well as for a number of localities within the state.

Test Structure: NY State civil service exams typically include the following: Written exam, oral exam, performance exam, and training and experience evaluation. Tests are multiple choice, and the exact content of each test is based on the position. Test takers are told a week before the exam where the exam will take place.

Exam Announcements and Information: New York State jobs are posted on the website. Each job listing includes the test you are required to take to be considered for the position.

Test Results: Test results are available 90-120 days after taking the test, and are valid for 4 years. To find out whether or not you passed, you can call the department, log into your account online, or visit the open data portal and search for civil service exams. 

Passing Scores: Individuals who pass their test are added to the eligible list, where hiring managers can invite them in for interviews. If you fail your test, you must wait 90 days before attempting the test again. However, since it takes 90 days before you receive results, most candidates can register for another test attempt immediately after learning about poor results.

New York City (NYC) Civil Service Tests

If you want to work for New York City, most likely you’ll have to take a test. New York City offers a number of different opportunities including in health care, finance, and public safety. 

Administered by: The New York City Department of Citywide Administrative Services (DCAS) schedules and administers civil service exams. Tests are taken at Computerized Testing & Application Centers in Lower Manhattan and Brooklyn. 

Test Structure: There are three types of New York City civil service exams:

  • Multiple choice test – Up to 100 questions, either administered on computer or with a scantron
  • Educational and Experience test – A questionnaire covering your background and experience
  • Practical test – These include physical exams, required for police and firefighter positions, and stenographer tests, which times typing speed

Exam Announcements and Information: New York City civil service test schedules can be found at DCAS website. Positions that require tests include testing information in the job listing. 

Test Results: Computer-based multiple-choice test results are available immediately. Tests taken using paper are available shortly after taking the test. You can see your results by logging into New York City’s Online Application System. Tentative Educational and Experience test results are usually available immediately, or posted on the Online Application System. Final results are mailed to test takers once the results list is established. 

Passing Scores: Most tests require 70% to pass. If you pass, you will be added to the city’s eligible list, which hiring managers use to screen candidates.

Ohio (OH) Civil Service Tests

Ohio employs nearly 70,000 state employees. These roles cover all areas of employment, including accounting, public safety, and healthcare. To be considered for one of these positions, you must pass an Ohio civil service test.

Administered by: The State of Ohio administers its tests. 

Test Structure: There are four types of tests:

  • Oral and essay tests
  • Typing exams
  • Experience and training ratings
  • Multiple choice tests

Exam Announcements and Information: Exam information is included in the job listing

Test Results and Passing Scores: Candidates who pass the test are added to the eligibility list, where they may be selected to be interviewed for a position. 

Pennsylvania (PA) Civil Service Tests

With nearly 100,000 state government full time employees, Pennsylvania is one of the largest government employers in the US, with positions covering all aspects of Pennsylvania life. The vast majority of state jobs in Pennsylvania require you to take a test as part of the application process.

Administered by: The Pennsylvania State Civil Service Commission (SCSC) oversees all testing activities relating to state hiring in Pennsylvania. There are 7 testing centers across the state.

Test Structure: The content for each test is based on the role being applied for. There are four types of civil service tests in Pennsylvania:

  • Oral and Essay Exams – Often done before a panel of judges
  • Typing Exams – Testing on accuracy and speed
  • Experience and Training Ratings – Documentation of past education and work experience
  • Multiple Choice Exams – completed on a computer

Exam Announcements and Information: Exam information is included in job listings. Once you have applied for a position, you will be asked to schedule and manage your test taking, through the SCSC application dashboard. 

Test Results: Results are sent to candidates via email. Emails can also be accessed by signing into your account.

Passing Scores: Passing scores for most tests are 70% or higher. For most tests, candidates who pass are placed on an eligibility list, and may be called in for interviews. Other roles don’t use the list, and allow candidates to apply after passing their test.

Results Scale and Interpretations

Civil service tests are scored on a scale of 100, regardless of the number of questions in the test. A score of 70 is typically required to pass the exam. The exception to this is typing and stenography tests, which are scored based on speed and accuracy.

Exam Ratings

After passing a test, you’ll be given an exam rating, and placed on a list of eligible candidates. Hiring managers use that list to find people to fill open roles. If you pass the test, and a hiring manager chooses someone else to fill the role, you are still eligible to be selected for a different role within the civil service.

Once you have passed a test you will not need to take the test again for similar jobs within the agency. However, passing scores do not transfer from one branch of the government to another.

Exam ratings eventually expire; typically, if two years have passed, you will need to retake a civil service exam.The rating form, which you will receive after completing the test, will indicate the expiration date of your score.

Eligible Lists

After passing the test, your name will be added to an eligible list for a position. The list is sorted by test score, with individuals who achieve the highest marks on the top of the list. The hiring agency reviews the list, and usually invites the individuals for an interview in the order of their overall exam rating when positions become available.

civil service exa information
Civil Service Exam Eligible List Sample (Source: DCAS, NYC)

Job Offers

Passing any test does not guarantee you a position. It is just one part of the application process, and there are often other requirements. Applicants who are found higher on the eligible list are usually offered a position first. However, passing the civil service exam will put you in a position where you can be offered a job in the future.

Civil Service Test FAQs

Is there a standard civil service exam?

No, there isn’t a single civil service exam covering all different types of positions. However, just about every test will have verbal, mathematical, and clerical elements.

Do U.S. Armed Forces Veterans Have a Scoring Advantage?

Yes, U.S. Armed Forces veterans do have some advantages when applying for civil service positions. Their test score receives 5-10 preference points, based on their eligibility. However, not all veterans qualify. Rules are complicated, and if you are a veteran, you should ask the hiring agency for clarification.

What is included in my civil service exam?

The civil service exam is based on the position being offered. Exam topics will usually be included in the job listing. However, you should expect that your test will have a verbal, mathematical, or clerical component to it.

What civil service positions require passing the civil service exam?

Many jobs require candidates to pass a civil service exam, including law enforcement agencies, the IRS, mail handlers, secretarial and clerical positions, HR roles, and more.

Civil Service Test Tips

Once you are sitting in front of the Civil Service exam, here are a few things you can do to give yourself a better chance to acing the test.

  1. Manage your time well. If you have 30 minutes to answer 60 questions, you have 30 seconds per question. Don’t linger too long on a single question.
  2. If you have time at the end of a section, go back and check your answers
  3. Before taking the test, find out if wrong answers will count against you. If you are not penalized for wrong answers, guess where you are unsure. If wrong answers count against you, leave items you don’t know blank.
  4. If you are using paper and an answer sheet, be careful marking your answers. If you write the answer to one question on the wrong line, or accidentally give two answers to one question, the question will be marked wrong.
Civil Service Test Tips
Civil Service Test Tips. Source: iPREP


  • Exam Announcements: When government agencies want to build up their list of candidates for different positions, they release an exam announcement. The announcement contains all the relevant information, so you will know what to expect on the exam, and when and where you can take the test.
Civil Service Exam Announcement
Sample Local Civil Service Exam Announcement (Source: OC Civil Service Commission)

Test Location: Civil Service tests are generally taken at the agency where you are applying, with an examiner in the room to hand out materials or answer any questions. There are some agencies that allow you to take the test online.

Test Schedule:  Some exams are given on a continual basis, and can be taken any time. Other tests have specific test dates.

Test Format:  Almost all the questions are multiple-choice questions.

Test Materials: Test is typically taken on computer, although some agencies use question books and answer forms. You will have scratch paper available to work out any problems. 

Cost: There are fees to take the test, which is set by each jurisdiction. Fees may include both a test-taking fee and a filing fee.

Retake Policy: If you fail the test, you can usually take it again as long as applications are being accepted for a position. If you passed the test but would like to take it again to improve your score, you typically must wait a year to try again.

Civil Service Test Administration
Civil Service Test Administration. Source: iPREP

Test Provider

There is no single civil service exam, and no single test provider. The U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) is the chief HR agency for the federal government, and oversees all hiring.  USA Hire, which is part of OPM, has created standard assessments for federal jobs, ranging from entry level to senior positions, and measures general competencies and technical skills. USA Jobs is a job board for federal positions. Each announcement includes exam information.

Civil Service OPM
(Source: OPM)

State and local exams are managed by the state or municipality. The tests are either created by the state or municipality, or by a third-party assessment company.

Information Sources

Disclaimer – All the information and prep materials on iPrep are genuine and were created for tutoring purposes. iPrep is not affiliated with any branches of the United States federal or local government, or any third party providers of assessment tests.

Free Civil Service EXAM practice test: Here is a collection of free civil service sample questions to help you prepare for your civil service exam:

Arithmetic Comprehension Sample Questions

Question 1 of 2

Write the solution in the box below:

2895 ÷ 12 = ?

The correct answer is 241.25

Source: iPREP
Civil Service division 8

Since the dividend is not evenly divided by the divisor, the decimal point is set in the quotient and additional zeros are added to the dividend until the operation is completed or until the same digit repeats itself 3 times.

Question 2 of 2

Convert the decimal to fraction form:

13.375 =

  • $$$ 13\dfrac{3}{8} $$$
  • $$$ 13\dfrac{7}{8} $$$
  • $$$ 13\dfrac{5}{8} $$$
  • $$$ 13\dfrac{8}{13} $$$

The correct answer is A ($$$ 13\dfrac{3}{8} $$$).

Source: iPREP
13.375(Separate whole number from the decimal)
= 13 + 0.375(Multiply and divide the fraction by 1000).
= 13 + 0.375 x 1000/1000(Rearrange terms in the fraction)
= 13 + (0.375 × 1000)/1000(Multiply the terms in the numerator)
= 13 + 375/1000(Simplify the fraction by dividing the numerator and denominator by ‘125’).
 = 13 + (375÷125)/(1000÷125)
 = 13 + 3/8
= 13 3/8

Mathematical Reasoning Sample Questions

Question 1 of 2

68% of US households—over 80 million families—own a pet. The chart below depicts the distribution of the different types of pets owned by American families. Expressed as a percentage, how many more dogs are kept as pets in comparison to fish?

Civil Service Charts 36D
  • 4%
  • 27%
  • 45%
  • 300%
  • 400%

The correct answer is 300%.

Source: iPREP

Explanation: According to the chart, dogs represent 36% of the overall number of pets kept by US households and fish represent 9%. This means that there is 4 times the number of pet dogs in comparison to the number of pet fish. If the number of fish is 100%, then the number of dogs is 400% in comparison to the number of fish.

Notice that the question asks how many more dogs there are, thus the correct answer is only the number of dogs above the number of fish. Therefore, the correct answer is 400% – 100% = 300%.

How to approach questions that include chart interpretation:

  • A significant portion of the information presented in tables and graphs questions is usually irrelevant to solving the question. The reason for that is that in addition to your math skills, your table/graph information extraction and analysis are also assessed. Your first goal in these questions is not to fully understand the information presented to you, but to understand what information the question is looking for. Therefore, reading the question must always precede examining the chart.
  • Nonetheless, if a title for the chart exists, it is important to read it before reading the question, as it usually provides the essence of the information presented within it and can often help to better understand the question.
  • Therefore, the best order to approach a chart question is to: A.) read the title of the chart; B.) read the question and understand it; C.) examine the chart and seek the relevant information for solving the question; D. answer the question.
Question 2 of 2

The average number of students in each of the five classes is 20. If two classes consist of 17 students, a third consists of 19 students, and a fourth of 20 students, how many students are in the fifth class?

  • 19
  • 20
  • 21
  • 24
  • 27

The correct answer is 27.

Source: iPREP

Explanation: The average (arithmetic mean) is the sum of all values divided by the number of values. You can use this formula in order to get to the correct answer, but there is a faster way:

Using the formula of the average:

Average = (sum of elements)/(number of elements)

20 = (17+17+19+20+X)/5
20*5 = 17+17+19+20+X
100 = 73 + X
X = 100-73
X = 27

Reading Comprehension Sample Questions

Question 1 of 1

There is meaning behind certain colors. Let’s examine the meaning behind two colors that seem to be used quite a bit – red and black. Red is generally associated with energy, power, strength, and determination. Red is commonly used in many sports uniforms because of all the above-mentioned ideas associated with it. Then there is black, which is associated with power. There are other things black is associated with such as evil, death, and elegance, and in sports, the focus is on its meaning of power. These two colors, red and black, are common in almost every NFL team’s uniform. Sixteen out of the thirty-two teams in the NFL have these colors in their uniform. That is very telling considering the meanings of these two colors.

Black is a common color for sports uniforms because it reflects positively on the __________ of the team.

  1. Elegance
  2. Strength
  3. Power
  4. Evil

The correct answer is C.

Source: iPREP

The second paragraph focuses on the traits associated with the red and black colors. You should look for the traits associated with black to answer the questions.

Of the four answers, three are associated with black – elegance, power, and evil. However, the paragraph emphasizes that in the context of sports, black is chosen as a uniform color for its association with “power.” “Power” is also associated with red. If you are not a careful reader, it might lead you to eliminate it from being the correct answer.

Tip: As you may assume that colors should reflect on positive, sports-related traits, answers B and C strike as better candidates for the correct answer. If you reach such a conclusion, it might be sufficient to search for those specific words in the text and to try to affirm or contradict them as the correct answer.

Written Communication Sample Questions

Question 1 of 3

Choose the word or the words that, when inserted in the sentence to replace the blank or the blanks, best fits the meaning of the sentence.

___________ the team leader had been told by the HR manager that continuing to overload his team with tasks would be ___________ to his employees, he insisted on tightening the schedules.

  • Because, disadvantageous
  • Despite that, instrumental
  • Although, detrimental
  • Even though, unassailable
  • Since, incremental

The correct answer is although, detrimental.


The sentence can be completed with pairs of words with either of these meanings (the phrasing is a reduction of the sentence):

  • Even though he knew it was bad, he insisted… OR
  • Because he knew I was good, he insisted…

The first option makes more sense and indeed the option “although, detrimental” presents a pair of words that fit it.

The meaning of the rest of the words and their essence in brackets:

  • because, disadvantageous (bad) – creates an illogical connection
  • despite that (although), instrumental (assisting, good) – creates an illogical connection
  • even though, unassailable (certain, neutral) – the pair does not create a coherent sentence
  • since, incremental (accumulative) – the pair does not create a coherent sentence
Question 2 of 3

Choose the correct spelling.

  • Harras
  • Harasse
  • Harass
  • Haress

Harass is the correct spelling.

Question 3 of 3

Which of the following is the opposite of the word “DERANGED“?

  • Neat
  • Dirty
  • Sane
  • Bleak

The correct answer is “Sane”.

Explanation: “Deranged” means mad or insane, exactly the opposite of “sane.”

  • “Neat” most commonly means place or thing arranged in an orderly, tidy way. It is the opposite of “disorganized”, which some people may think is related to “deranged” because of the similar spelling.
  • “Dirty” means not clean.
  • “Bleak” has several meanings but it generally refers to something dreary, charmless and inhospitable.

Clerical Skills Sample Questions

Question 1 of 2

What is the correct order to file the following list of names according to the alphabet?

  1. Ollie Bush
  2. Dewey Bridges
  3. Lori Alexander
  4. Alfredo Nunez
  5. Darryl Bridges
  6. Tracey Nunez
  • 4-5-2-3-1-6
  • 3-5-2-1-4-6
  • 3-2-5-1-6-4
  • 4-2-5-1-3-6

Filing of names is typically done according to the last name first and if needed, according to the first name.

Here is the correct order:

  • Alexander, Lori (3)
  • Bridges, Darryl (5)
  • Bridges, Dewey (2)
  • Bush, Ollie (1)
  • Nunez, Alfredo (4)
  • Nunez, Tracey (6)
Source: iPREP
Question 2 of 2
Civil Service Coding Sample2

The table above displays part of the airport coding scheme.

Which person will get the code AivY18?

  • 18 years old boy from China with a tourist visa.
  • 28 years old male from Russia with a student visa.
  • 50 years old man from China with a tourist visa.
  • 56 years old woman from Brazil with a work visa.

The correct answer is C.

AivY18 can be decoded as follows:

Civil Service Coding Sample2

Decision-Making and Problem-Solving Sample Questions

Question 1 of 2

What is least appropriate to include in an email that informs a job application that he or she has not been selected for the job after you have interviewed them?

  1. Thanking the applicant for applying for the job.
  2. Mentioning your positive impressions of the applicant.
  3. Beginning by informing the applicant that he or she has not been selected for the job.
  4. Sending the email from the department general email address rather than your own personal email address

The correct answer is D.

A rejection email should not be disrespectful. If the decision not to hire is yours, then it is recommended to send it personally from your work email address.

It is customary to begin with the rejection notice and not to have the applicant read a long introduction before (choice C). It is also definitely accepted to be polite and to thank the applicant and provide some positive feedback along with the rejection. These actions are important for maintaining a positive application experience and for providing the applicants with some tools for their next application.

Question 2 of 2

Your supervisor sends you an email stating that a project you are about to finish must include a public relations campaign, an element that was not a part of the original work plan.

What is your best course of action?

  1. Meet with your teammates, develop a proposal for a public relations campaign, and present it to your supervisor.
  2. Recommend your supervisor that within the project’s scope, a press notification should be sufficient as it will require less effort and achieve the same results as a public relations campaign.
  3. Ask your supervisor to appoint another teammate to work with you on the campaign in order that you will not miss the deadline.
  4. Ask your supervisor to describe exactly what must be included in the campaign.

The correct answer is A.

As an employee, you should generally assume that if your supervisor has asked you to perform a task, it is both required and applicable.

It is not recommended to start by implying that the request is not required (as in choice B) or not applicable (as in choice C).

It is always recommended to be proactive and present your supervisor with an initial plan (as in choice A). Probably, if additional means are required in order to complete the task, the supervisor will better understand them and be more receptive to provide them, if a plan is adequately presented. Choice D presents a passive course of action which may imply some unwillingness to perform the task. You are always accepted to think and plan your projects and display a can-do attitude rather than just to dully follow instructions.

Well done!

You have completed the Sample Questions section.

The complete iPrep course includes full test simulations with detailed explanations and study guides.


In the first 30 minutes of use I have learned so much more than skipping along the internet looking for free content. Don’t waste you time, pay and get tests that actually help.

Richard Rodgers

January 28, 2020 at 7:49 PM

About the course

Welcome to iPrep’s preparation course for the civil service exam.

This course will help you boost your skills and with it your confidence toward your upcoming test. The course will provide you with the following tools and benefits:

  • Refreshment lessons of key verbal and numerical topics concepts that commonly appear on civil service exams.
  • An abundance of practice drills for you to experience the questions in various formats and to familiarize you with the expected time constraints.
  • A great variety of helpful tips for the different types of questions. Some of the tips are in the introductory sections while most are in the detailed explanations that follow each question.


Learning hours


Practice tests




Day access

By the end of this course, you will be more knowledgeable and confident. Knowledge and familiarity with the test are the two most significant factors that can help you maximize your score and improve your chances of success.

Which test topics should you prepare for?

Civil service exams may vary from one position to another.

To save precious time, and optimize your test preparation, it is important that you gain as much information as possible about your upcoming exam. Specifically, you should try to find out which test sections your civil service test is composed of, and prepare mostly for the relevant topics. Usually, your civil service exam announcement should specify which topics are expected to be included in the test.

Wishing you an enjoyable learning experience!

Skills you will learn

verbal skills

numerical skills

judgment & reasoning skills

test-taking skills


  1. Course Introduction
  2. What Are Civil Service Tests?
  3. Which Test Topics Should I Prepare For?
  4. Verbal Ability
  5. Numerical Ability
  6. Non-Verbal Ability
  7. Critical Thinking
  8. Cognitive Aptitude
  9. Situational Judgment Test (SJT)
  10. Clerical Ability
  11. Mechanical Comprehension Guide
  12. Civil Service Test-Taking Tips
  13. Course Conclusion

Customer Testimonial

This is an awesome prep for the test. It is definitely helping me determine what my strengths and weaknesses are. I can focus more on what I need the most help in but also review things I am good at. It goes in to great detail with al the subject matter and it is easy to understand. It was nice for me to get a refresher in subjects I haven’t studied in awhile. I am hopeful that I will pass my test now that I feel more confident with my abilities. Thank you Iprep.

Tiffany Mccarthy

June 3, 2021 at 3:44 PM


Cheryl M*******

September 4, 2023 at 2:36 PM

This has been one of the best and easiest ways to study for the Civil Service Test!! I definitely recommend.

Michael M******

July 9, 2023 at 11:48 PM

Uh-Mazing! Totally and completely and utterly and profoundly uh-mazing. I wish I could take tests everyday, all day, all the time, forever and ever and ever.

Geraldine G*****

June 4, 2023 at 5:36 PM

I was skeptical about investing in this Civil Service study guide. I have been over looked twice for a temporary promotion. I have many years working at my job. My only way to receive a permanent position is placing high on the test. I made this purchase reluctantly because the test itself is intimidating. However, when I open up the course and began reading the syllabus, I was happy with my purchase!

Regina W*******

May 12, 2023 at 12:43 PM

I passed my civil service exam! I had never taken a civil service exam before. But with help from iPrep, I passed.

Carmella A****

April 30, 2023 at 7:39 PM

This will help me to hopefully pass my civil service test as sometimes these exams can try to trick us.

Rita C*******

March 23, 2023 at 1:39 AM

Great review but would like to be able to retake the test more than twice. Would like additional math samples.

Lisa R***

March 22, 2023 at 12:22 PM

This test prep is great! It’s been a long time since I’ve taken a test. This is definitely the way to go to get back in the game!

Lisa R***

March 21, 2023 at 12:23 PM

This test prep and practice tests is really getting me prepared for the exam. Its been a long time since I took a test and this is helping me get back into the swing of things. The practice tests and the explanations are extremely helpful and are assisting with increasing my confidence!

Danielle F*****

December 22, 2022 at 8:01 PM

Very helpful for those that currently have or are apply for a civil service position, gives a wide variety of study materials.

Samuel C*******

November 15, 2022 at 11:27 PM

Iprep has been an invaluable asset to me as I have prepared for my civil service exam. The many practice options are particularly useful and allow me to target specific areas. I will continue to utilize this great resource!