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Measuring critical thinking with the Watson Glaser Critical Thinking Appraisal (WG-CTA)

Updated: Oct 20, 2022

What is Critical Thinking ?

Critical thinking is the ability to recognise that a problem exists and to look for evidence to solve it. It is the ability to assess this evidence in a logical way in order to determine new knowledge and direction. But far more than that, it is seen as a great skill required of all leaders today.

As such this makes an ideal assessment at the manager/ senior manager level.

Careful, analytical reasoning is an important part of nearly all management roles and is known to play an important part in a large range of occupations.

About the Watson Glaser

The Watson-Glaser Critical Thinking Appraisal assesses the individual’s capability for critical thinking – a discrete skill distinct from, but not independent of, overall intelligence. It is available online and contains 40 items drawn from an item banked and candidates have a maximum of 30 minutes to complete the test. The assessment can be used for selection and development and is suitable for Senior Leader, Manager and Graduate roles.

The assessment has been designed to measure some of these important abilities and since its inception has become a highly respected and widely used instrument in the selection and development of graduates, managers and leaders. It is generally acknowledged to be one of the toughest tests of critical thinking available with strong links to performance in role.

For security, the Watson-Glaser is drawn from a bank of questions, ensuring that no single form of the test can be copied and reproduced. This item bank approach ensures that candidates can be assessed remotely and unsupervised.

Features and Benefits

  • Internationally recognised, the robust standardisation, reliability and validity has ensured that this tool is one of the most trusted instruments available.

  • Acts as a complement to measures of general intelligence (eg numerical reasoning), enabling you to gain an insight into those operating – or with the potential to operate – at a senior level.

  • Goes beyond verbal reasoning to assess critical thinking.


British Psychological Society (BPS) Level A accreditation or by GFB providing feedback on the report at an additional cost

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