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Two Types Of Test Written In The NBT



Two Types Of Test Written In The NBT

Two Types Of Test Written In The NBT. In South Africa, the National Benchmark Test (NBT) plays a crucial role in assessing students’ readiness for higher education. It consists of two main types of tests, each designed to evaluate different skills and abiliti

Two Types Of Test Written In The NBT

AQL and MAT are the two tests. The AQL is written in a three-hour session in the morning. A three-hour afternoon session is scheduled for the MAT the same day. It is not permitted to write the AQL test on one day and the MAT test on another.

1. Academic Literacy and Quantitative Literacy (AQL)

The Academic Literacy and Quantitative Literacy (AQL) test is one of the two components of the NBT. It assesses students’ abilities in language and mathematics, crucial skills for success in higher education. Here’s a closer look at what each component entails:

Academic Literacy

This section evaluates students’ proficiency in reading and comprehending academic texts. It assesses their ability to extract information, understand arguments, and interpret complex written material. Students may encounter passages from various disciplines, including humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences. The Academic Literacy test measures critical thinking, analytical reasoning, and the ability to draw inferences from written content.

Quantitative Literacy

The Quantitative Literacy component focuses on assessing students’ mathematical skills and reasoning abilities. It covers topics such as arithmetic, algebra, geometry, and data analysis. Students are required to solve mathematical problems, interpret data presented in different formats, and apply quantitative reasoning to real-world scenarios. The Quantitative Literacy test aims to gauge students’ ability to use mathematical concepts and methods to solve problems encountered in academic settings.


2. Mathematics (MAT)

The Mathematics (MAT) test is the second component of the NBT and specifically focuses on assessing students’ mathematical proficiency. Unlike the AQL test, which includes both language and mathematics components, the MAT test delves deeper into mathematical concepts and problem-solving skills. Here’s an overview of what the Mathematics test entails:

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Mathematical Concepts:

The MAT test covers a wide range of mathematical topics, including algebra, trigonometry, calculus, and statistics. It assesses students’ understanding of fundamental mathematical concepts and their ability to apply them in various contexts. Questions may require students to solve equations, work with geometric figures, analyze functions, and interpret mathematical models.

Problem-Solving Skills

In addition to testing mathematical knowledge, the MAT test evaluates students’ problem-solving skills and logical reasoning abilities. Students are presented with complex mathematical problems that require careful analysis and systematic approaches to find solutions. This component aims to assess students’ ability to think critically, apply mathematical techniques, and derive solutions through structured reasoning.


The National Benchmark Test (NBT) consists of two main types of tests: Academic Literacy and Quantitative Literacy (AQL) and Mathematics (MAT). These tests assess students’ readiness for higher education by evaluating their language proficiency, mathematical skills, critical thinking abilities, and problem-solving aptitude. Understanding the components and expectations of each test is crucial for students preparing to take the NBT and for educators supporting them in their academic journey.

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