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Retesting Candidates

Learn when it's appropriate to retest candidates for components of the Wonderlic Select assessment

Jim Zradicka avatar
Written by Jim Zradicka
Updated over a week ago

Wonderlic Select provides you the ability to retest candidates for one or more of the component assessments. But, with few exceptions, we recommend retesting candidates ONLY when a retest warning appears on the candidate’s testing results. These warnings indicate either that the entire available time was not used for the timed cognitive component, or that our scoring algorithm identified an atypical response pattern for the personality component.

Identifying Candidates with Retest Warnings

When the platform identifies a candidate with an unusual testing administration, a cautionary symbol appears next to the candidate's overall single score as well as the sub-score for the affected component assessment. You can view the nature of the warning by clicking on the candidate's name to open the score report.

What Retest Warnings Mean

When you open the results report for a candidate with one or more warnings, you'll see details of the warning(s.) Retest warnings are only provided for the cognitive and personality components. 


For the cognitive component, warnings are generated when a candidate doesn't have the benefit of the full 12 minutes allotted for the assessment. This may be due to a loss of internet connectivity or because the candidate closed the browser window prematurely.


For the personality component, several possible warnings may be generated based upon the candidate's responses. The scoring algorithm flags testing administrations when a candidate may have tried to create an overly favorable perception of their personality, or when they selected an unusually large percentage of a specific type of response.

When to Retest a Candidate

In general, Wonderlic recommends retesting a candidate ONLY when a retest warning is present. Warnings are generated when an atypical or questionable interaction between the test taker and the testing platform may impact the fair evaluation of the applicant in relation to other applicants.

The Wonderlic Select component assessments measure traits and abilities that are relatively stable throughout adulthood, so retests are unlikely to result in radically different results under normal testing conditions. Furthermore, the assessments exhibit a high degree of reliability, meaning that you should expect scores to be the same or very similar in test/retest situations. Of course, for the personality component, changes to a test taker's response patterns on a second attempt may distort their true scores.

When retesting is appropriate, realize that the cognitive ability component is the only segment of the assessment with right or wrong responses. For this reason, four equivalent forms of the cognitive assessment are used. Applicants invited to retest receive a different form of the cognitive component to minimize artificial score inflation caused by responding to identical questions on a second attempt. For the personality component, it's possible that test takers will change their responses on a second attempt - especially if they interpret the invitation to retest as a sign that they didn't "pass" their first attempt.

How to Retest a Candidate

The easiest way to initiate a candidate retest is to click on the "Initiate Retest" button on a candidate's expanded score report. You should retest the candidate only on the warned component assessment(s) to avoid unnecessary duplication of work.

You may also invite candidates to retest by clicking on the menu icon at the upper right corner of the candidate's results report, choosing "Launch Tests" from the dropdown menu, and selecting the appropriate cognitive ability or personality components.

If you retest the candidate using the email invitation option, we recommend alerting the candidate that they will be receiving an invitation to retake one or more of the assessments. The automated email that candidates receive does not identify the invitation as being for a retest. This may confuse candidates or imply that their initial testing results were not recorded.

Other cases possibly warranting a retest are situations when candidates tell you they were interrupted or distracted during the timed cognitive ability segment or tell you they misunderstood the functionality of any of the assessment components. If you choose to retest candidates in these situations, it's advisable to remind them to complete the assessments in a quiet place without interruptions. It also may be beneficial to review the assessment functionality with them.

NOTE:  Generally, it is not advisable to test candidates more than twice on any Wonderlic Select component. For a second administration of the cognitive component with no warnings present, you can trust these results to be accurate for the candidate. For a second administration of the personality component that is flagged with the same retest warning, it is highly unlikely that additional administrations will result in a different result.

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