General Competency Test Level 2 – Practice Test – Instructions and Sample Questions

Last-Minute Checklist

  1. Know the exact date, time and location of the test administration session.
  2. Bring to the test session:
    1. your Personal Record Identifier (PRI, if you are a public servant)
    2. one piece of signature and photo identification
    3. a calculator (if you wish)
    4. a watch (if you wish)

If you have a disability and you require special testing accommodations, you are responsible to notify the test administrators well in advance of the testing date so that they can take the necessary steps to determine the appropriate accommodations for your specific needs.

Taking the GCT2: General Test-Taking Tips & Information

  1. Read this entire publication and be sure to complete the practice test following all of the instructions. Doing so will help you to become familiar with the GCT2 and to work at the appropriate pace.
  2. If you want additional practice, you may wish to consult the reference sections in a local public library, or in bookstores, for preparation books on standardized tests.
  3. Try employment tests and school tests (whether or not they count for something) as well as tests, quizzes and puzzles in magazines, newspapers and quiz books. If there are no time limits, set them yourself.
  4. Read the whole question and look at all of the answer choices before choosing an answer. It is often a mistake to think that because the first or second answer choice looks good to you, you do not need to read the remaining choices.
  5. Pace yourself: Since each question is worth the same amount (1 point), you should try to do as many of the questions as you can. While estimating the average amount of time to be spent on each question is useful, you should note that the questions on the test are increasingly more difficult toward the end and, therefore, may require more time to solve.
  6. Make sure the numbered space on the answer sheet matches the number of the question you are answering. Remember that if you skip a question you must also skip the corresponding answer space on the answer sheet.
  7. Guess at the answer if you are not sure: there is no penalty for guessing on the GCT2.
  8. Use all the time available: If you have time to spare, go back and review your answers. Re-read those questions you weren't sure about in the first place and double check your answers. This is also a good time to check your answer sheet to make sure you have recorded your answers correctly.
  9. The retest period is 180 days (this means that you have to wait 180 days before taking the test again). If you re-take the test, only your most recent score will be used. If you are happy with your results and decide not to rewrite, your score on the GCT2 is valid indefinitely.

Instructions and Sample Questions

Question type 1: Vocabulary

From among the five answer choices given, select the word or phrase which best defines the word in UPPERCASE letters.

Example 1


  1. overlook
  2. set on fire
  3. explain
  4. illustrate
  5. fall asleep

The correct answer is the second option.

Example 2


  1. concise, briefly expressed
  2. filled with juice
  3. serving to draw in by suction
  4. mentally acute, ingenious
  5. resulting or terminating favorably

The correct answer is the first option.

Question type 2: Figural relations

There are two versions of the figural relations questions: figure completion and figure analogy

Figure Completion

For figure completion, your task is to identify the answer figure that logically completes the problem figures series.

Example 3

Example 3: Figure completion

In example 3, one horizontal line is added in each successive problem figure, so the next figure in the series should contain five horizontal lines. The correct answer is the third option.

Example 4

Example 4: Figure completion

In example 4, the square is moving in a counter clockwise movement and the circle is moving in a clockwise movement, so the next figure in the series should have a square in the upper left corner and a circle in the upper right corner. The correct answer is the third option.

Figure Analogy

For figure analogy questions, identify the relationship that exists between the first pair of figures and then use this information to choose the figure among the five answer choices that has the same relationship to the third figure in the question.

Example 5

Example 5: Figure Analogy

In the above example, the second figure is a replica of the first, except that it has been rotated to the left. Therefore, your task would be to select the answer choice that resembles the third figure in the question, but rotated to the left as well.  The correct answer is the fourth option.

Example 6

Example 6: Figure Analogy

In example 6, the first pair of figures show a rectangle placed over a circle and the second figure shows a rectangle placed over a circle but the colors have been inverted (the circle has become white and the rectangle is now dark) and the circle has moved upward. Select the answer choice that resembles the third figure and complete the pair applying the same changes as in the first pair. The correct answer is the second option.

Question type 3: Number and letter series

Each question of this type presents a series (list) of numbers and/or letters. Find the rule that has been used to produce this series; then use this rule to select the item (either a number or letter) which would follow at the end.

Example 7

3,     6,     9,     12,     15,     18

(Identify the number that comes next in the series)

(1) 19       (2) 20       (3) 21       (4) 22       (5) 23

In example 7, the numbers are increasing by threes (i.e., 3 + 3 = 6; 6 + 3 = 9, etc.). Therefore, the next number in the series is 21 (i.e., 18 + 3)), to complete the series correctly. The correct answer is the third option.

Example 8

80A,   70C,   60E,   50G,   40I,   30K,   20M,   10

(Identify the letter that comes next in the series)

(1) L         (2) N        (3) O        (4) P        (5) Q

Example 8 involves both letters and numbers. The numbers in the series are decreasing by ten (i.e., 80, 70, 60, etc.). The letters are in ascending order, with every second letter "missing" : A, [B missing], C, [D missing], E, etc.

Therefore, the letter “O” should be paired with the number “10” to complete the series. The correct answer is the third option.

Example 9

2,   3,   6,   11,   18,   27,

(Identify the number that comes next in the series)

(1) 36       (2) 29       (3) 31       (4) 38        (5) 34

In example 9, the numbers are increasing by and odd number (i.e., 2 + 1 = 3; 3 + 3= 6; 6 + 5 = 11, etc.) Therefore, the next number in the series is 38 (27+ 11). The correct answer is the fourth option.

Example 10

50A,   60C,   55E,   65G,   60I,   70K,   65M,   75

(Identify the letter that comes next in the series)

(1) L         (2) N        (3) O        (4) P        (5) Q

In example 10, both letters and numbers are involved.  The numbers in the series are increasing by 10, then decreasing by 5, increasing by 10 again and so on.  The letters are in an ascending order with every second letter “missing”.  A (B missing), C (D missing), etc.  Therefore, the letter “O” should be paired with “75” to complete the series.  The correct answer is the third option.

Question type 4: Numerical

These questions require you to use basic arithmetic skills to solve a problem. You are permitted to use a calculator and rough paper to arrive at your answer. Two examples of a numerical question are provided below.

Example 11

If a clerk can file 100 letters in half an hour, how many letters can the person file in 2 hours?

  1. 100
  2. 200
  3. 500
  4. 300
  5. 400

Two hours is 4 times longer than half an hour, so the clerk should be able to file 4 times as many letters in that length of time (i.e., 4 x 100 = 400 letters). The correct answer is the fifth option.

Example 12

Using a 100-litre can of gasoline, a person fills three cans equally and has 1/4 of the original amount left over. How many litres does each of the smaller cans hold?

(1) 25   (2) 20   (3) 16   (4) 30   (5) 331/3

A quarter of 100 litres is 25 (100 ÷ 4) and 25 litres is what is left over from original 100 litres (100 litres – 25 = 75), 75 litres is the amount of gasoline divided in three containers. Therefore, each of the three other containers holds 25 litres (75 litres ÷ 3). The correct answer is the first option.

Question type 5: Analytical reasoning

In the analytical reasoning section, you are presented with short passages of text. Your task is to answer a set of questions about each passage. For a given passage, the individual questions are independent of each other. Also, information contained in one question (or its answer choices) should not be used to answer other questions.

In answering some of the analytical reasoning questions, you may find it useful to draw a diagram.

Example 13

There are four houses on one side of a city street. Each house belongs to a different person who lives in the house. The owners of the houses are Amy, Barnes, Clidewell and Dombrowski. Each owns one car and the colours of these cars are white, red, blue and green. Furthermore:

  1. Dombrowski owns the white car
  2. Barnes' house is not at either end of the street
  3. Amy owns the second house from the left
  4. Clidewell owns the blue car

Which people own the red and the green cars?

  1. Barnes and Amy
  2. Barnes and Dombrowski
  3. Clidewell and Barnes
  4. Dombrowski and Amy
  5. Clidewell and Amy

The sample passage indicates that Dombrowski owns a white car and Clidewell owns a blue car. The only other people mentioned in the passage are Barnes and Amy, so they must be the owners of the red and the green cars. The correct answer is the first option.

Example 14

Read the following short passage.

"A new book on Intergroup Relations will contain seven chapters (Theories, Reducing Prejudice, Values, Movements, Cross-Cultural Research, The Legal System and Education) which can be assembled in a variety of orders. However, the first and second chapters must be Theories and The Legal System respectively. Furthermore, the Values and Movements chapters must not be separated by another topic."

If the Cross-Cultural Research chapter is placed third, in how many ways can the book be organized?

(1) 4   (2) 8   (3) 12   (4) 16   (5) 32

According to the text above, it can be deduced that the first three chapters respect the following order: Theories, the Legal System and Cross-Cultural Research.  The chapters on Values and Movements must not be separated but can be inverted.  They may be placed as follows: Chapter 4-5, 5-4, 5-6, 6-5, 6-7, and 7-6, which totals six possibilities.  The other two chapters (Reducing Prejudice and Education) take the remaining spots and may be inverted.  For each of the six possibilities for the Values and Movements, there are two possibilities for the chapters Reducing Prejudice and Education.  Therefore, the total number of way the book can be organized is 12 (6 X 2).  The correct answer is the third option.


  1. (2)
  2. (1)
  3. (3)
  4. (3)
  5. (4)
  6. (2)
  7. (3)
  8. (3)
  9. (4)
  10. (3)
  11. (5)
  12. (1)
  13. (1)
  14. (3)

NOTE: Performance is not affected by whether or not a candidate takes the Practice Test in preparation for the General Competency Test: Level 2.

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