Do you want to study further after getting your matric? Chances are that you have to write a National Benchmark Test for acceptance into a university in South Africa. But what is it all about? Get the ins and outs of the test right here.
What is a National Benchmark Test?
The National Benchmark Test (NBT) is an assessment conducted by an institution to all first-year applicants. The institution will use it to support the applicant’s acceptance into the university. You will need to write the test before admission into the institution.
There are two National Benchmark Tests. These are the:
- Academic and Qualitative Literacy Test (AQL)
- Mathematics Test (MAT)
Which Test Should I Write?
All students are required to write the AQL test. If you are planning on studying a course that requires mathematics such as science, you will need to write the MAT test as well. If not, you will only be writing one test.
Purpose of the NBT
The NBT evaluates prospective students’ readiness for admission. Therefore you can’t fail or pass the exam. It checks if you are ready for higher learning. If you score low on the test, the faculty will offer you assistance in your studies. The NBT tests your:
- Maths skills
- Academic and quantitative skills
- Ability to follow instructions
Format of the Test
The NBT will be written at designated test venues in South Africa. Both the MAT and AQL tests are three hours long. They are multiple choice questions. The AQL test is written in the morning, and the MAT test is written in the afternoon. If you are writing both tests, they have to be written on the same day.
Is the NBT Compulsory?
Yes and no. Some institutions may require you to write an NBT and submit it along with your application for admission. Other institutions may only require your matric certificate to apply. This does not make the test any less important. It is a great way for the institution to decide which support they need to offer you.
Preparing for the NBT
There are no past test papers or specific subjects you need to write the NBT. It assesses your existing knowledge you have gained in high school. To give you an idea of how the questions are structured, there are exemplar questions available to you.
To ensure that you are prepared to write the test, you’ll need:
- 2 pencils
- ID or passport
You are not allowed to have a calculator, cell phone or any additional resources with you in the exam venue. If you are writing both tests, you are allowed to take your lunch with you.
Writing Your NBT Online
Since the NBT is accessible to all, you can apply to write the NBT online as well. There are strict guidelines you need to follow in order to write the test online. If you do not adhere to these online NBT rules, your test will not be valid.
Should I Write an NBT to Enrol at Skills Academy?
Skills Academy is the word support in every way.