Criteria Cognitive Aptitude Test (CCAT)

Updated 6 months ago by Amy Tranter

The Criteria Cognitive Aptitude Test (CCAT) measures an individual's aptitude, or ability to solve problems, digest and apply information, learn new skills, and think critically. Individuals with high aptitude are more likely to be quick learners and high performers than are individuals with low aptitude. The CCAT consists of 50 items; very few people finish all 50 items in the 15 minute time limit.

Score Reports

Each individual is given a raw score and a percentile ranking. The raw score indicates how many questions (out of 50) the individual answered correctly, while the percentile ranking is a relative performance metric that indicates how the individual scored relative to others who have taken the test. For example, a percentile ranking of 45 means than an individual scored better than 45% of the group on which the test was normed.

Aptitude as a Predictor of Performance

Research shows that aptitude is one of the most accurate predictors of job success: twice as predictive as job interviews, three times as predictive as experience, and four times as predictive as education level.

Cognitive Aptitude Test training

Watch our consulting psych led Cognitive Aptitude Test (CCAT) assessment training video to learn everything from what CCAT predicts and measures to understanding your report to what the candidate experiences when completing the assessment.

Validity Information

Construct Validity: The CCAT has been shown to be highly correlated to other leading measures of cognitive aptitude. For example, in a sample of 34 individuals taking both the CCAT and Wonderlic Personnel Test (WPT), the correlation between the CCAT and the WPT was .78.

Predictive Validity: Various studies have shown that CCAT results correlate significantly with job performance for a wide variety of jobs, but it is an especially effective predictor of performance for jobs that require enhanced abilities in the areas of problem-solving, learning, critical thinking, and verbal and mathematical reasoning. Examples of jobs for which the CCAT has high predictive validity include managerial positions, software engineers and other technology workers, financial analysts, auditors, and many others.

Standardisation Sample

Norms for the CCAT were developed using a sample of 985 individuals. The sample was made up of working adults aged 18 and older. These individuals were being assessed for employee selection purposes, and represented a mixture of individuals from over 50 companies whose current positions included managerial positions, technical services positions, customer service positions, and sales and sales-related positions.

The mean score for the standardization sample for the CCAT is 24.2, the median score is 24, and the standard deviation is 8.58.

Mean Scores and Standard Deviations for Various Occupational Samples


About the CCAT

Information brief for CCAT

CCAT Sample Score Report

CCAT Sample Score Report (with Score Range)

Guide for interpreting score report

Case study: Technology call centre uses the CCAT to reduce turnover

Case study: Consumer finance company uses CCAT to lower hiring and training costs

Case study: Sales reps with higher scores on the Cognitive Aptitude Test and EPP generate 7x more revenue

Case study: SBMA reduced time spent hiring by 63%

Case study: Schweiger Dermatology Group reduces turnover by 57%

Case study: Consulting firm improves job performance and retention for analyst

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