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Non Verbal Reasoning Test (NVRT)

The Non-Verbal Reasoning Test (NVRT) is an assessment of spatial abilities. It does not involve reading, so can provide insight into the abilities of pupils who think visually (ie in images rather than words), and those who have limited reading skills. The designs used within the tests are also not culturally specific and involve very little mathematical knowledge, so that only reasoning skills are assessed.

By testing such basic learning processes, these assessments can be valid indicators of future academic performance in subjects including Maths, Science and Design and Technology, as well as enhancing knowledge of a pupil’s abilities to help inform teaching strategies.

Age range

8 – 14 years

Who can use it?


How is it used?

A short practice test ensures that all pupils understand what is expected of them before they start the test. 

Spatial reasoning tests are designed to pinpoint pupils' spatial abilities, offering information based on nationally standardised performance. The NVRT is available in both paper and digital formats and can be administered individually or in a group setting.

What can it tell us?

The NVRT helps to identify pupils with visual thinking bias, who may find words a barrier to realising their potential in education. The test is standardised, so individual pupils’ results can be compared with the national average through the identification of Standard Age Scores. Results can be used to aid individual target-setting and learning programmes.


  • Fully standardised.
  • It is suitable for pupils with English as an Additional Language (EAL).
  • Results can be used for individual target-setting and to inform teaching strategies.
  • Provides a detailed picture of all pupils' spatial abilities and, in particular, the abilities of visually-biased pupils.


  • Very popular for use by schools so the child may already have done the test, and therefore be subject to a negative re-test effect.

Is there a cost?


Where can I access it?

Can be purchased by schools only at