STEM Thinking Skills Test

STEM Thinking Skills Test

STEM Thinking Skills Test Measure what matters: critical thinking skills and mindset Sample report image showing group performance on Overall critical thinking Brown paper background with a strip of paper torn to reveal the words PREVIEW
Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin

The STEM Thinking Skills Test (STEM) evaluates reasoning skills essential for success in engineering, technology, science, mathematics, and related subjects.

Measure quantitative reasoning skills

The STEM Thinking Skills Test is used to evaluate student skills in educational contexts where demonstrated ability to apply quantitative reasoning is valued.

The STEM Thinking Skills Test can be predictive of potential success in subjects such as mathematics, statistics, the natural and behavioral sciences, engineering, finance, economics, computer science, architecture, and information technology.

Educators use STEM Thinking Test group data to evaluate the effectiveness of STEM curricula and to assess the readiness of applicants.


The STEM Thinking Skills Test is a scientifically developed measure of a range of quantitative reasoning skills.  The assessment is oriented toward experimental design, engineering, and information sciences. All questions are set in contexts that are familiar to adult and adolescent test-takers.  Items do not require specialized knowledge.

Mindful of the diversity of the intended test-takers — adolescents and adult learners in a wide variety of educational settings — the questions are designed to be culturally sensitive and inclusive. Questions provide scenarios, contexts, and information requiring test-takers apply their thinking skills to infer the best answer from among the choices offered.  Multiple choice items use everyday scenarios, appropriate to the intended test-taker group. Each item requires that the test-taker make an accurate and complete interpretation of the question.  Any specialized information needed to respond correctly is provided in the question itself.

The STEM Thinking Skills Test is typically administered in 50 minutes; the length of the instrument is set to permit maximum performance within the range of possible effort for the intended test-taker group.

Scores achieved by each individual test-taker, and aggregated group scores, bar charts, and descriptive statistics are reported on five metrics.

Scales Reported

The scales of the STEM Thinking Skills Test are designed to address common contexts where higher order thinking is critically important. In addition to a cumulative Overall score, this instrument provides numerical and qualitative scores on for specific metrics:

  • STEM Reasoning Overall
  • Out-of-the-Box Algebra
  • Spatial-Relational Thinking
  • Scientific Thinking
  • Tech Logic

Test Administration

Our app based assessment tools are easily administered 24/7 via our secure, encrypted, online, multi-lingual interface over a wide array of major platforms while offering a single simple interface to mobile, or non-mobile users. An in-app tutorial makes it simple to administer the assessment.  Insight Assessment testing specialists will work directly with your in-house technology representative during set-up to ensure a smooth solution.

Recommended Companion Assessment

Engaging problems and making decisions using critical thinking involves both skills and mindset. For a complete assessment of a test taker’s critical thinking, it is recommended that both skills and dispositions be measured. Using companion assessments results in a comprehensive measurement of whether a test taker is ‘willing and able’ to think well.

We recommend that the STEM Thinking Skills Test be taken in conjunction with the California Critical Thinking Disposition Inventory (CCTDI).

Contact us today to discuss this effective way to predict which applicants have the critical thinking and quantitative reasoning skills to succeed in competitive STEM programs.

The STEM Thinking Skills Test returns scores on the following scales:

STEM Reasoning Overall

The STEM Reasoning Overall score: a holistic measure of the reasoning and problem-solving skills considered highly valuable for learning and performance success in the STEM domains.

Out-of-the-Box Algebra

Out-of-the-box mathematical thinking is the ability to come up with elegant solutions to algebraic and arithmetic problems that might otherwise seem long and arduous.  While problems of this kind may be solved with brute force techniques, time-limited contexts often render exhaustive calculations impractical.

Spatial-Relational Thinking

Spatial-Relational Thinking: the skill of recognizing and predicting spatial relationships, geometric progressions, and the best organization of objects in space for engineering and design related purposes.

Tech Logic

Tech Logic: the ability to identify the logical structures and organizational plan manifested in written text, diagrams, data files, and mathematical functions.

Scientific Thinking

Scientific Thinking: the skill of framing a problem from observations, determining possible, or likely, significant relationships between a set of provided facts, and determining which observations would count as reasonable evidence for or against competing hypotheses.


Easy to read, easy to use objective metrics on the strengths and weaknesses of key aspects of thinking.

Insight Assessment clients depend on our high quality test-taker data and clear, concise analytics. They know that our comprehensive reports provide the insights that lead to solutions.

The goal of any testing project should be to obtain high-integrity data that provides specific and relevant information that can further the goals of the individual, program or organization being studied.  Data must be presented in formats that inspire new insights and drive evidence-based decision making. Each Insight Assessment test instrument has been crafted to provide a wide range of information, statistical and demographic, about individuals and/or groups.  Reports,  generated immediately after conclusion of testing, can be used to support advising, placement and research. 

Clients receive the Assessment Report package with the purchase of all testing options.  


The Assessment Report package includes:

  • Insight Assessment individual reportsIndividual test-taker analytics:
    • an overall score of thinking ability (Overall Score)
    • a categorical interpretation of the strength of the Overall Score  and scale scores
    • a norm-referenced percentile ranking (applicable to skills assessments only)
    • scale scores to indicate which of the skills areas are particularly strong and which are weaker and require training attention.
    • test administrators control whether test-takers receive their individual results after testing.
  • Group analytics include:
    • descriptive statistics and presentation ready graphic representation of the average Overall score and scale scores for the groupImages from Insight Assessment Group Reports
    • descriptive graphics and representations including  size of the group, mean, median, standard deviation, standard error of the mean, lowest score, highest score, first quartile score and third quartile score. To see video about interpreting group report histograms
    • descriptive statistics of the demographic characteristics of the test-taker group (if collected
    • the average percentile of  group as compared to a pre-selected external norm group (applicable to skills assessments only). For more information on norm-referenced scores
    • Electronic data files spreadsheet with all scale scores and demographic responses.
  • User Manual which includes chapters on interpreting individual and group test-taker scores using our 4-Step Process.

Customized Analytic and Report Options include:

  • The Assessment Report package, PLUS:
  • Custom report preparation to address specific  accreditation standards, integration of agency data into self-study reports, preparation of materials for executive briefings, or public presentations
  • Enhanced graphics for reports to funding agencies and stakeholder groups
  • Periodic, in-depth group analysis reports, multi-site analyses, ongoing analyses of group differences.
  • preparation of local or regional norms for group comparison,
  • E-testing automatic PDF push of assessment results to meet your reporting needs.
  • Customized test result delivery when high impact decisions depend on the depth of interpretation of assessment data or its presentation.
  • Ongoing support from Insight Assessment to manage your testing plan and results reporting to match your organization’s needs (Service plan options)

Options for Customized Assessment Reports: 

Insight Assessment clients can customize their results package with additional analyses, graphics, and interpretative text discussing their scores in relationship to their particular goals and objectives. Each customized report package is designed and tailored to best meet your needs. Pricing for customized reporting is individually negotiated.

Contact us to receive objective and relevant results, analytics you can trust.


Whether you wish to assess individuals or groups, Insight Assessment reports provide the data integrity and objective analysis you need to document thinking skills and attributes.


As a qualified purchaser, we offer the option of purchasing a preview of the assessment experience.

A preview provides you with one or more opportunities to view and experience the assessment from the perspective of the individual being assessed and to see the reporting options.

Your account representative will set up your preview of the instrument on mobile devices or on computers. The preview includes the profile page, an example of the assessment itself, and an example of the individual report that will be provided at completion of the assessment.

Each preview also includes a digital copy of the user manual and resource guide for the specific instrument you are viewing. User manuals provide:

  • a brief description of each metric being assessed by the instrument;
  • a description of how to interpret both individual and group assessment results;
  • a discussion of validity and reliability for the measures;
  • all necessary information about administration of the assessment;
  • many additional resources that we hope you will find useful for designing your assessment project.

Contact us to order a preview now, or receive your preview when you place your first order for assessments.


Request a price quote.

Follow Us
© 2020 Insight Assessment a division of California Academic Press

Contact Insight Assessment