Frequently Asked Questions

FAQs

Who Uses IA Assessments?

Educational institutions utilize IA critical thinking assessments for several key purposes:

  • Selective Admissions: Identify students with strong critical thinking abilities, ensuring high-performing cohorts.

  • Student Advising and Retention Programs: Guide students based on their critical thinking strengths and areas for improvement, aiding in retention.

  • Documentation of Student Learning Outcomes: Measure and showcase the effectiveness of educational programs in cultivating critical thinking.

  • Student Development and Enrichment Programs: Design initiatives that cater to students' needs.

  • Program Evaluation and Accreditation: Maintain standards and achieve accreditation by demonstrating a commitment to critical thinking education.

  • Predicting Successful Professional Licensure: Assess the likelihood of students achieving professional licenses based on their critical thinking prowess.

  • Reporting to Performance-based Funding Agencies: Substantiate the quality of education and students' critical thinking advancement, ensuring sustained funding.

  • Educational Research Studies: Contribute to studies by reputable organizations like NSF, DOE, RWJ, and others, pushing forward the frontiers of understanding in critical thinking education.

Employers utilize IA critical thinking assessments in various strategic ways:

  • Global Applicant Screening: Ensure candidates, regardless of their location, possess the desired critical thinking skills and mindset.
  • Hiring and On-boarding: Place emphasis on self-development in critical thinking from the initial stages, laying the groundwork for future performance.
  • Employee Development: Initiate training programs and evaluation measures centered on enhancing problem-solving and risk management capabilities through critical thinking.
  • Leadership Identification: Recognize and promoting employees to unit leadership and management roles based on their critical thinking proficiencies.

Military and government organizations harness the power of IA Critical Thinking Assessments in multiple crucial areas:

  • Hiring Practices: Ensure that personnel have a documented strength in critical thinking to handle complex and high-stakes tasks.
  • Training Effectiveness: Evaluate the success of training initiatives in imparting and strengthening critical thinking capabilities.
  • Emergency Response Evaluation: Gauge the risk management and problem-solving skills and mindset of those responsible for emergency situations, ensuring timely and effective responses.
  • Service Improvement: Deploy programs aimed at enhancing the efficacy and reliability of essential government services through informed, critical thinking.
  • Innovation and Strategy: Identify individuals with exceptional problem-solving abilities, empowering them to create strategic options for challenges.
  • Military Decision-Making: Bolster the decision-making prowess of military personnel, facilitating improved mission planning, execution, and post-action evaluation.
  • Selective Admissions: Select students based on their inherent critical thinking abilities, ensuring an enriched learning environment.
  • Program Evaluation: Continuously assess and refine educational programs with a focus on nurturing critical thinking.
  • Accreditation Review: Support and substantiate the school's commitment to promoting critical thinking during accreditation processes.
  • Documenting Learning Goals: Track and showcase the achievement of set critical thinking milestones within the learning journey.
  • Advising and Enrichment: Tailor programs to bolster the reasoning skills and thinking mindset of students, catering to their individual needs.
  • Celebrating Thinking Prowess: Recognize and celebrate students who display exceptional strength in reasoning skills and mindset, motivating and setting standards for peers.

Hospitals and medical centers utilize critical thinking training and assessments to ensure the highest standards in patient care and staff competence:

  • Hiring Practices: Prioritize critical thinking strengths when hiring professionals across all levels to ensure effective decision-making in patient care.
  • Benchmarking: Compare potential hires against a national pool of applicants, ensuring only the best critical thinkers are selected.
  • On-boarding Guidance: Ensure that newly-hired clinical professionals align with the center's critical thinking standards from day one.
  • Staff Development: Offer self-improvement initiatives to existing staff and clinical managers, focusing on elevating their critical thinking abilities.
  • Evaluating Practice Initiatives: Assess the impact and effectiveness of new medical practices and protocols through the lens of critical thinking.

Designing Your Project

IA assessments are specifically designed for organizations looking to evaluate the critical thinking skills and mindset of their candidates, students, or employees. Our assessments cater to various sectors including educational institutions, corporate entities, training programs, and more. If understanding and advancing the critical thinking capabilities of your members is vital to your objectives, then our assessments would be an excellent fit. Remember, our aim is ‘Advancing Thinking Worldwide,’ and we’re here to help organizations like yours achieve that goal.

For assistance selecting the best critical thinking skills or mindset assessment for your project, please contact our customer support representatives. 

The assessment instruments we provide build on a multidisciplinary international expert consensus research project that defined "critical thinking" and identified the thinking skills inherent in the human cognitive process of purposeful reflective judgment.  Upon that foundation we add the subsequent more than 30 years of international endorsement of these now well-defined concepts.  Validity and reliability coefficients meet the highest standards for all instruments (see additional comments below). Each assessment has been psychometrically evaluated in collaboration with researchers, educators, trainers, and working professionals, to assure cultural sensitivity and language competence for its intended test-taker group. The Executive Summary of that international expert consensus project, "The Delphi Report," is available free in the Resources section of our website.

 

We’ve piloted items/scales across diverse populations, including trainees, students, employees, military personnel, and more. An extensive body of both collaborative and independent research underpins our tools. We pride ourselves on the cultural and linguistic competence of our instruments, thanks to our work with global scholars. Ultimately, the validity and reliability coefficients of all our assessments meet the industry’s highest standards, confirming our unwavering commitment to advancing critical thinking. 

 

Our assessment instruments measuring reasoning skills and thinking mindset are developed and studied in representative samples appropriate to each tailored instrument. For example, assessments developed for each population group (undergraduate students, graduate students, employees and trainees, military officers and enlisted personnel, government employees, children at every K-12 grade level, health professionals across the spectrum of health care disciplines, law students, MBA students, technical and community college students, and the general population) are examined in validation studies to assure their performance in the intended population and to uncover any un-intended non-inclusive language or cultural bias. The resulting item pool and measurement scales used in our assessments are updated to maintain their validity, reliability, and cultural relevance.

 

Multiple choice items are used to measure reasoning skills. These are not memory items or content knowledge recall items. Instead, our questions provide the content to which the test-taker must apply their thinking skills. Consistent with best practices in the measurement of internal motivations, intentions, and beliefs, carefully worded Likert-style items measure thinking mindset attributes.  The scale metrics of the reasoning skills assessments capture the cognitive skills needed for strength in critical thinking as defined in APA Delphi Report as intrinsic to critical thinking skill.  The mindset metrics are framed using this study’s description of the ideal critical thinker informed by discussions with industry leaders and expert teachers and trainers of reasoning and decision-making. The resulting instruments are built using scales that have been validated separately and as a group in the composite assessment and will have been tested against social desirability bias. 

 

For information relating to content validity; construct validity; convergent construct validity; discriminant/divergent validity; criterion/predictive validity; the relationship of critical thinking to age, sex, grade point average, or educational opportunity; controls for social desirability response bias; internal consistency; and test-retest reliability see the user manual for the assessment instrument you are considering. 

Calibration to Project Needs: Ensure the assessment is the appropriate level for those being evaluated and measures the skills and/or mindset that the project is looking to analyze.

Ensure language comprehension for accurate assessment outcomes. This is why our assessments cater to various ages, educational levels, roles, and languages.

Recognize the significance of cultural relevance in real-world question scenarios. At Insight Assessment, we work globally to ensure our assessments’ cultural sensitivity.

IA takes pride in being a global leader in critical thinking assessment. Our online tools have been meticulously crafted to offer a multi-language experience, ensuring both language flexibility and cultural sensitivity. Our instruments have been designed to be as universally applicable as possible, minimizing cultural biases and ensuring the relevancy of questions across diverse backgrounds. This means whether you’re a university in Asia assessing American candidates or a European company evaluating local talents, our tools are adaptable and relevant. Presently, our assessments are trusted by institutions in over sixty nations and are available in over twenty languages. Our commitment is to provide assessments that transcend cultural and linguistic boundaries, ensuring validity and reliability worldwide.

Insight Assessment partners with Measured Reasons to offer professional training and workshops for organizations. For individuals looking to hone their critical thinking skills and mindset, we recommend visiting Insight Basecamp.

Absolutely. Clients can incorporate up to 10 custom demographic questions for test-takers to complete upon their initial login. These questions facilitate more detailed analysis of assessment results based on categories like department, years of service, education level, geographic location, and more. Possible responses can be open-ended or provide a drop-down menu of predefined options. Reach out to our assessment specialists for assistance in framing these questions and tailoring them to your project’s needs.

Numeracy, often referred to as quantitative reasoning, is the ability to reason and solve problems involving numbers. It’s vital in various domains:

  • STEM Careers: Central to professions in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

  • Business & Military: Essential for decision-making, risk management, and strategic planning.

  • Health Care: Crucial for patient management, dosage determination, treatment evaluation, and ensuring patient safety.

  • Development & Risk Management: Important for developers and managers dealing with probabilities, estimates, and likelihoods.

Measuring numeracy ensures that professionals in these fields possess the foundational skills necessary for effective decision-making and problem-solving.

Testing & Administration

Our test-taker interface is designed for universal accessibility. It can be accessed on computers, tablets, and smartphones using any standard browser, online, worldwide, 24/7/365 without the need for additional software. If you have specific compatibility concerns or organizational needs, please contact your assessment representative for assistance.

  • Interface Accessibility: Our test-taker interface is on track to be WCAG 2.0 AA level compliant by summer 2024, ensuring it meets recognized accessibility standards.

  • Extended Time: We can provide logins for users requiring additional time to complete an assessment.

  • Cognitive Processes: Since our tests measure cognitive problem analysis and problem-solving, there are no accommodations that can alter this core function of the test without affecting its purpose.

  • Responsibility & Accommodations: While we aim to make our assessments as accessible as possible, specific accommodation decisions remain with the purchaser. If you encounter a limitation or need guidance on potential accommodations, please contact us. Common accommodations include providing additional time or reading test items aloud to test-takers without interpreting or explaining items.

  • Test Security: All accommodations must uphold the terms and conditions relating to test security. This includes no unauthorized duplication, copying, digital capture of test items, or administration via non-IA software.

Yes, IA provides assessments in various languages to cater to our global clientele. The available languages for each mindset or skills assessment can be found on its respective product page. We’re committed to ensuring that language isn’t a barrier to critical thinking assessment.

Yes. We support anonymous testing for clients and projects that do not want the end user’s name or other personal identifying information to appear on reports. Contact our assessment support team to discuss your specific project needs.

Our thinking mindset assessments utilize a Likert format (agree, disagree) and typically measure six to ten mindset attributes relevant to the assessed population. The number of items varies based on the population, but all assessments are designed to be completed within 25 minutes.

Our thinking skills assessments often include short scenarios, images, or graphics with 4 or 5 response options. The number of questions varies by the population, with scores reported for individual skills and an overall critical thinking score. All assessments in this category are designed for completion within a 45-60 minute period. Check our Products page for more details.

For details about the time allotted for any specific assessment, see that assessment’s product page.

While there’s no specific “test prep” required for a critical thinking assessment, you can enhance your performance by practicing some general strategies:

  • Familiarize Yourself: Get to know the format and types of questions used in critical thinking assessments using the free assessments available in our testing system or the quizzes and surveys on Insight Basecamp.
  • Critical Thinking Exercises: Engage in exercises or activities that involve problem-solving, logical reasoning, and decision-making.
  • Read Widely: Explore diverse topics and viewpoints to broaden your knowledge and perspective.
  • Practice Under Time Constraints: Work on answering questions within the allotted time to improve your time management skills.
  • Stay Calm: Relax on the assessment day, stay focused, and trust your critical thinking skills.

Remember that the goal of a critical thinking assessment is to measure your natural ability to think critically, so there’s no need for extensive preparation. Just be yourself and approach the assessment with a clear mind.

For those looking to strengthen their critical thinking skills and thinking mindset, try our Critical Thinking e-courses and exercises available on Insight Basecamp.

Click the blue LOGIN button at the top right of our website.  Use the credentials supplied by your test administrator to login.  Select your assessment by clicking on it, choose a language, then you can Start.  Free Sample assessments are also available to help you become familiar with the testing interface.  For more detailed instructions, download this PDF.

Results & Reports

Assessment Report packages typically include the following components:

  • Individual score reports for each person assessed.
  • Group-level spreadsheet and presentation-ready graphics that can be downloaded as needed.
  • Customizable demographic profile data to match your privacy and data analysis requirements. Plus the option to use specific group variables for group reports on subsets of your test takers.

Clients can decide whether test-takers will have online access to their own score results. We recommend discussing the advantages and disadvantages of permitting or withholding score reports with one of our knowledgeable assessment support agents to ensure the best fit for your project.

Yes. Available percentile comparison groups for bench-marking reasoning skills assessments are listed on the product page for that assessment. Percentiles rankings are reported with the score results data delivered to the client.

Pricing & Placing an Order

New clients: Get started by reaching out to us at contactus@insightassessment.com or by calling (650) 697-5628. Our assessment specialists are here to discuss your project, help identify the best testing tool for you, and provide a no-obligation price quote.

Established clients: Contact your account representative directly by email, or phone (650) 697-5628 for assistance with your new project or to request a price quote. Alternatively, use our Request a Price Quote form.

We negotiate discounts for multi-year and high-volume client organizations. We offer discounts to governmental agencies, academic non-profit institutions, competitive externally funded peer-reviewed research studies, doctoral dissertation research, and 501(c)3 organizations. Contact our representatives for information about discount pricing and eligibility.

Absolutely! We believe in the value and effectiveness of our assessments and are happy to offer demos to prospective clients. To schedule a demo and explore our testing interface, please contact our customer service agents. This will give you a firsthand experience of the quality and usability of our platform before making a purchase decision.

Payments can be made via credit card, check, ACH bank transfer, or wire transfer.