The Wonderlic test is mainly used to determine whether somebody is an ideal candidate for a given job. The test includes 30 to 50 questions (depends on its variation – WPT-Q or WPT-R).
Each test should be answered in a pre-determined amount of time (12 minutes for WPT and 8 minutes for WPT-Q). The full version awards each question 1 point, and the quick test awards each question 1.66 points. Skipping a question or answering incorrectly earns you zero points.
Note – every candidate who takes the quick Wonderlic test (WPT-Q), will be later asked to also take the full Wonderlic test (WPT or WPT-R).
Average Wonderlic Scores
The average Wonderlic Test score is usually 20 to 21, roughly equivalent to an IQ of 100. The maximum and mininum scores are 50 and 10 respectively, in which a score of 10 usually indicates illiteracy, or a person which is barely literate.
However, the average target score of a given Wonderlic Test depends on the position one is applying for. Here are a few average test scores by profession, according to the official Wonderlic Group:
- Systems Analyst – 32
- Chemist – 31
- Electrical Engineer – 30
- Engineer – 29
- Programmer – 29
- Accountant – 29
- Executive – 29
- Reporter – 29
- Teacher – 29
- Investment Analyst – 27
- Electronics technician – 26
- Salesperson – 25
- Nurse – 23
- Bank Teller – 22
- Cashier – 21
- Firefighter – 21
- Craftsman – 18
- Security guard – 17
- Welder – 17
- Warehouseman – 15
By the way, the most famous Wonderlic Test scores are those of American football players (especially those in the NFL – National Football League). The best and worst football-related Wonderlic scores are published continually on sports news websites, and provide some indication as to a player’s past, present and future success (and even his tendency to be arrested).
Wonderlic Score Report
The score report itself is only revealed to the hiring manager, and looks something like this:
In this specific example, the minimum score required for hiring the candidate is 27 (in the green zone). Scoring 24 to 26 puts the candidate in a “cautionary” zone (yellow), and scoring 23 and below is in the 'not recommended' zone (red).
Can the Wonderlic Score predict success?
There has been much research on the subject, support the notion that the Wonderlic is a good IQ / aptitude test substitute:
- The Big Five personality dimensions and job performance: A meta-analysis (1991).
- WAIS-R validation of the Wonderlic Personnel Test as a brief intelligence measure (1990).
- Quantifying the effects of psychological interventions on employee job performance and workforce productivity (1983).
- Long-term reliability of the Wonderlic Personnel Test (1982).
- and others.
It seems like the Wonderlic truly has a good correlation between its score and current/future capabilities, especially those associated with learning, logic, personality and logic.
Although there is a 'global' Wonderlic average score, when it comes to personnel tests – the average score varies in accordance with the needs of each specific profession. The best advice here is to get to know the minimum score required in your profession, so you’ll know what to expect when dealing with your Wonderlic.