In this post, we start with an overview of "Verbal Reasoning" section, which includes 7 question types.
We provide links to sample questions and strategies for each of the 7 question types.
We also provide more general tips and strategies that students can use to perform successfully on the Verbal Reasoning section of the official OLSAT® exam.
Verbal Reasoning Question Types: What To Expect?
The verbal reasoning component of the test measures a student’s ability to comprehend patterns, relationships, and context clues in writing in order to solve a problem.
In order to be successful in answering these questions, students must be able to fully understand what a question is asking, as well as make inferences based on what they have read.
The verbal reasoning section has seven types of questions.
|Aural Reasoning||A-C||These problems assess a child’s ability to listen to and understand a
question that is read aloud to them. A child will need to pick an answer
based on inference/reasoning skills and informationprovided in the question.
|Arithmetic Reasoning||A-G||These verbal problems incorporate mathematical reasoning. Some
questions assess basic mathematical concepts. Others assess more
sophisticated concepts such as reasoning and solving word problems.
The main skill tested here is the ability to create mathematical problems
from language and to solve those problems.
|Logical Selection||D-G||In order to find the answers to these questions, students have to apply logical
reasoning to uncover the best answer. These questions often asks students to
consider which answer might be correct, versus which answer options are
always correct. Being able to make that distinction is key.
|Word/Letter Matrix||D-G||These questions provide students with a matrix of letters or words. Students
must perceive the pattern or relationship among these words or letters in order
to supply a missing letter or word.
|Verbal Analogy||D-G||These questions ask students to consider the relationship between a pair of
words, then apply this relationship to another pair of words. Students’ ability to
correctly uncover these relationships is key to answering these type of questions.
|Verbal Classification||D-G||With these questions, students must look at a series of words or concepts and
identify which one does not fit with the others. In answering this type of
question, students must be able to evaluate the relationships among words or
|Inference||E-G||Students will be provided an argument or scenario and, based on the information
provided, must discern an appropriate conclusion. These questions rely on a
student’s ability to evaluate which parts of the provided information are absolutely necessary for reaching the correct conclusion.
Verbal Reasoning Question Types:Tips and Strategies
To prepare for this section, your student will mostly need to work on deciphering patterns, relationships, and context clues in writing.
The best way to accomplish this goal is to work on sample questions so that your student can learn the thought process and logical reasoning needed to correctly solve these question types.
Initially, model how to solve the questions for your student. Read the question and the answer choices to your student, and “think aloud” through the question, giving your student an example of how to draw the correct conclusion from the information provided. Help your student do the same with her answers: determine how she arrived at an incorrect answer and how this can be improved in the future, and reinforce sound logic leading to correct answers.
For the test, instruct your student not to panic if she doesn’t know an answer. Use process of elimination by narrowing down as many obviously incorrect answers as possible, and then make an educated guess. Tell her not to feel upset about having to guess; just take a deep breath and move on to the next question.
Verbal Reasoning: Sample Questions
Try sample questions from every question type on the Verbal Reasoning section: Aural Reasoning, Word/Letter Matrix, Verbal Classifications, Verbal Analogies,Logical Selection, Inference and Arithmetic Reasoning.