Typing Test

Typing tests have become an integral component of modern employment processes. By measuring candidates’ speed and accuracy, they allow employers to find candidates best suited to fill their roles.

Tests may take one, two, three, five or 10 minutes depending on their length and the requirements and skill levels of a candidate for that role.

What Is A Typing Test?

Typing tests provide employers with an assessment tool for candidates for roles requiring data entry, like medical facilities and customer service offices. Typing tests serve to measure two key aspects of most jobs: accuracy and speed of typing. While there are various kinds of typing tests, the basic one usually entails giving candidates passages of text that ranges from letters and words to punctuation marks and numbers in a set amount of time before asking them to type their responses on paper.

Candidates are then awarded three scores: their words per minute (WPM), errors made during testing, and adjusted WPM which takes into account any mistakes not corrected by them during data entry. These give a more accurate reflection of how quickly and accurately a candidate can enter information into databases.

Consistent practice is the key to succeeding at any typing test, whether that involves online resources such as typing test software, or a random system you adopt. Make an effort to understand how the testing format will play out for your employer as well as what kinds of texts will be asked of you.  This will give an indication of which areas need more focus for optimal success on test day.

As well as practicing, it’s also crucial that you use the appropriate keyboard and typing position when taking your test. This includes making sure the keyboard is at an ideal height for your hands and sitting with good posture, since looking at your screen will reduce speed!

Some companies require you to bring your own laptop or desktop for testing purposes, while others will provide one themselves. Before arriving for any special requirements or tests, always double-check that everything meets all standards.  Don’t be shy if there are conditions preventing you from typing quickly and accurately

Why Is It Needed?

Most jobs require at least some level of typing proficiency. From working as a medical transcriptionist or administrative assistant, to typing quickly and accurately quickly is essential in almost all industries.

Typing tests are designed to accurately gauge an applicant’s skill level and predict how they will perform on the job, yet single typing tests alone do not provide a full picture of candidates’ abilities. Professional recruiters therefore combine data entry typing tests with other assessments such as verbal reasoning and numerical reasoning tests in order to gain an in-depth view of each applicant’s capabilities.

Typing tests can also be invaluable tools in call centers for customer service and emergency operator positions, which typically involve typing long strings of numbers (VINs or social security numbers), along with alphanumerical text which needs to be typed all caps. A quick and accurate typing test can help identify candidates for these roles quickly.

Typing tests are also commonly used for legal transcription, which requires knowledge of legal terminology and formatting as well as fast and accurate typing speed. Legal transcription tests tend to be more challenging than other types of typing exams and can make passing the test even harder for candidates.

Finally, government agencies rely on teams of data entry specialists and researchers to provide actionable insights and reports. Working efficiently together ensures critical information reaches decision-makers as soon as possible.  Typing tests can help identify ideal candidates by measuring attention to detail as well as speed of work.


Typing tests are an invaluable asset to both employers and job seekers. By conducting assessments that evaluate current typing speed and pinpoint areas that need improvement, candidates can assess themselves against targeted exercises designed to build typing speed while tracking progress and setting goals to steadily advance their typing abilities over time. This may lead to increased productivity in personal or professional contexts that involve computer usage.

Basic typing tests typically ask you to type a paragraph of words listed on-screen or transcribing a passage of text, while more comprehensive testing platforms offer options like playing a typing game, copying text from pages or images, or typing without backspace buttons. 

Typing tests conducted online are more than just speed measurements, they also measure accuracy. Accuracy is especially crucial for jobs requiring accurate data entry, such as accounting or customer service, or highly technical roles like those performed by stenotypists.

There are both free and paid options for online typing assessments available online. Paid assessments tend to provide more comprehensive tests across multiple platforms. Many also provide free trials so candidates can test them out before committing to paying a subscription fee.

Some advanced typing assessment tools offer gamification and competition to motivate learners to increase their typing speed, increasing their chances of passing tests with flying colors. Furthermore, adaptive learning increases difficulty as users become more proficient. Furthermore, being able to take practice tests on different devices with customizable content makes online assessments far more useful than their paper-based equivalents.

To increase your typing abilities, the best way is to take regular online typing tests and exercises. Most online tests can be taken free of charge and will give an indication of CPM/WPM speeds as well as accuracy levels. Writing down these numbers in a notebook or spreadsheet allows you to track your progress over time.


There can be some disadvantages associated with administering typing tests as part of the hiring process, however. First and foremost, administering them can be time consuming and challenging, while it’s difficult to compare results among candidates. Furthermore, some people may find the tests stressful or frustrating, which can have an adverse impact on performance and attitude towards work.

Typing tests may also be inaccurate in their assessment of candidates. They usually only consider an applicant’s overall words per minute (WPM) score without factoring in capital letters, punctuation marks or sentence length, leaving room for false positives and inaccurate hiring decisions.

Age, education level and physical health all can affect a person’s typing speed and accuracy.  These factors could make achieving the required WPM score on a typing test more challenging for candidates.

Average Typing Words Per Minute

Average typing words per minute is 41.  However, this figure can differ depending on your profession. A fast typing speed is essential in many professions like data-entry or customer service and helps ensure efficient work processes.  In fact, some positions require a certain minimum typing speed in order to qualify.

Some individuals are capable of reaching incredible typing speeds.  The world record typist was able to achieve 150 words per minute over an extended period, reaching as high as 212 with short form content. Unfortunately, such incredible typing skills are hard to come by without extensive prior training and practice.

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