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# Thread: Math test for new employees

1. Aluminum
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Jan 2006
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Iowa
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178
Originally Posted by Mike Burdick
A company starts work at 8:00 am and it ends work at 4:30 pm. What time should the employees be at the job and what time should they leave the job?

........and how many days/week should you show up for work???

2. Aluminum
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Jan 2006
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Iowa
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178
Originally Posted by tattooed_machinist
math test...pfffft, whats wrong with throwing them a chuck of metal and a drawing.....'go!'

And just for fun, point them towards a mill with a DRO that doesn't work quite right on one axis. See if they can catch it before they scrap the part.

Awhile back I argued for an "automatic" passing grade for discovering(before scrapping the part) that the X scale was off by 25% on the Van Norman I was testing on. They wouldn't give it to me, made me start over the next day.

3. Originally Posted by Mike Burdick
Here's a two part question that's pretty hard nowadays...so don't expect too many correct answers!

A company starts work at 8:00 am and it ends work at 4:30 pm. What time should the employees be at the job and what time should they leave the job?
Also...
Your shift is an 8 hour day with two 15min breaks and 30min lunch, how long are you expected to be at your machine/bench?

Some of our blokes only seem to manage about 5 hours!!

Dave

4. Good luck with your test but I don't hold much hope:

I just had a slightly heated discussion with an environmental science university graduate about the volume of a box being L x W x H, it seems he thought I was trying to trick him and when the calculator answer didn't match his expected answer he got upset and wouldn't accept it.

Then I had to prove 1/2 a millimetre equals 0.05 centimetres and that 100 square centimetres is not one square metre by multiplying 100cm by 100cm to get 10000 cm which He seemed to think was some kind of a trick

He also has a serious problem with density of chemical elements: "If you say this 100% pure silicon is 2.33 grams per cubic centimetre, how do I know all 100% silicon is 2.33 grams per cc?".

I may blow his mind on Monday with simple geometry.

5. Hot Rolled
Join Date
Nov 2005
Location
ridgecrest calif
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689
if i remember right Utah is a state licensed electrician state.
That means that if the person holds a state electricians license and you try to use your test the union will may comedown on you hard. lawsuit time.

They will claim since the person holds a state license he is fully qualified and you are using the test to discriminate for other reasons.
race, hair length, beard, tattoos, being union, ETC ETC ETC.

If you are a non union shop this will put a big bulls-eye on your shop, they are looking for anything they can use against nonunion shops to force them to go union or shut them down.

In Calif if you do these type tests you must check and grade the test with the person there. to show that they person passed or failed the test.
If not you are risking a complaint being filed.

I have had these tests and have had a industrial electrical job give me a residential electrical test. being that i am a industrial construction electrician i have no reason to learn residential and because of the state unemployment office don't ever plan to.( the state office has a lot of jobs at minimum wage for residential electrical IE illegal aliens)
I filed a complaint with the state for discrimination because the test had nothing to do with the job opening was applying for.

Also you need to be clear you are going to give a test and what it is going to be on before they show up.
Many apprentice schools don't teach doing math without a calculator these days.
too inaccurate

6. Hot Rolled
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Jun 2007
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Texas
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728
Just grab the 5th grade math final. That should be good enough.

7. Titanium
Join Date
Oct 2005
Location
England
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3,021
Originally Posted by Mike Burdick
Here's a two part question that's pretty hard nowadays...so don't expect too many correct answers!

A company starts work at 8:00 am and it ends work at 4:30 pm. What time should the employees be at the job and what time should they leave the job?
When I turn up and when I leave oh and I want a raise after 2 weeks*

Boris

* thats 5 weeks of real time because I'll only turn up 2-3 days a week anyway

8. Hot Rolled
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Apr 2006
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San Antonio, TX
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Have them put their hand in the left pocket and count their balls.
Repeat with right hand. The numerical values should match.
Old Bill

9. Cast Iron
Join Date
Dec 2006
Location
Campbell CA
Posts
264
Originally Posted by augoldminer
In Calif if you do these type tests you must check and grade the test with the person there. to show that they person passed or failed the test.
If not you are risking a complaint being filed.

Also you need to be clear you are going to give a test and what it is going to be on before they show up.
Many apprentice schools don't teach doing math without a calculator these days.
too inaccurate
I have been unable to find anything in CA labor law that regulates pre-employment testing. Do you have a source for your information? I'm talking about non-professional employees. Not someone who is certified or otherwise licensed. The people I test are generally mid level candidates, people who have some machine shop experience but are far from what I would call a journeyman level.

10. Originally Posted by Old Bill
Have them put their hand in the left pocket and count their balls.
Repeat with right hand. The numerical values should match.
Old Bill
When I first read this I thought the question implied that the applicant would have balls and this would get you in a heap o trouble with some applicants. Then I realized that the question would be ok if the correct, accepted answer was "zero or two". Then I remembered a childhood acquaintance who only had one. Used to call the poor guy "Uno". Ok, zero, one, or two.*

Then I realized that you question was great: counting skills and reliability.

Thanks for the amusing test question,

Jim

*Aside: There's a comedian that works with Jeff Foxworthy, can't remember his name, but he makes the comment about being exposed to chemicals (I think it's booze):" I worry sometimes about all that exposure and it's effect on my body. I mean, is one of my balls supposed to be the same size as the other two?"

11. Titanium
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Midlothian, Virginia
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12. Originally Posted by USMCPOP
Look over the math tests at the links below. Each test has 40-50 questions.
Thanks USMCPOP, these questions and the ones I got from steel hand should make a reasonable test.

I'm with bluechipper on this, all my complex ciphering is done in Autocad. Half the time I can't remember the diameter formula from the circumference formula. I would be much less efficient without Autocad, reference books, and Google.

13. Hot Rolled
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Dec 2003
Location
Albuquerque, NM USA
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USMCPOP, I looked at the 4th grade test and don't think it can be from any time more
recent than the 1940s or 50s. The highschool kids I've had in the metal shop couldn't
pass that with the help of the text book. :-( At least the great majority of them. It's realy
discouraging.
...lew...

14. Back in another life...We used to test with a VERY simple math test. We had the cad guys draw up a couple of rulers with arrows, and then ask what the arrows were pointing to...multiple choice. Also had simple addition and such - granted, simple stuff because of the work we were hiring for, but it was amazing how many could not get it. Most would not even remember that they took math in school...forget about geometry, trig might as well be Martian.

But...You can expand on this for machinists...use drawings of mics or veneers to see if they can read them. You can also easily test print reading the same way...make a test shaft with steps and grooves, maybe throw in some threads and give them a caliper and a drawing with the general shape and blank dim lines...fill in the blanks.

There is enough other stuff to always do, so don't spend you time training someone the basics unless that's what you are hiring...a new apprentice.

Good luck, Steve

15. Titanium
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16. Diamond
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It is not such a shame to use a calculator perhaps. Knowing what functions to use on the calculator is more important.

Knowing how to calculate circumference is handy but what is important is that the prospect knows what the names of the parts of a circle actually are: radius, diameter and circumference. If they've got that down, that is something

Same with trig functions: no one calculates them manually in most cases. What is more important is to know which one to apply to a given triangle problem.

A really wide open test method that would perhaps find the applicant's strengths would be to have 'go to options' in each question that send them to a different category. For example, "if you don't know the answer, go to question bla bla".

Just a couple of thoughts.

17. Cast Iron
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Dec 2006
Location
Campbell CA
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I have a someone taking the test as I write this. I supply a calculater and trig book. They show me they know how to use them. I don't expect anyone to have all the stuff memorized.

18. Stainless
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Nov 2007
Location
Alpharetta, Ga USA
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Originally Posted by steel hand
I have a someone taking the test as I write this. I supply a calculater and trig book. They show me they know how to use them. I don't expect anyone to have all the stuff memorized.
I have a guy working for me right now that could not trig out an angle or side if his life depended on it. I have to do it for him every time. (He's a good machinist, and an excellent welder, by the way.)
Just saying...

19. Cast Iron
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Mar 2007
Location
Washington State
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I had a joker give me a "machinist test" one time where he opened random pages of Machinerys Handbook (TM) and asked questions from the book. "What is the tensile and yield strength of 4130 steel" was one I remember I asked if it was annealed (remembering that was in the book) and that threw him. Anyway, I didn't get the job. One of the requirements was that you HAD to have an H-1 visa. US citizens aren't eligible for one.

20. Aluminum
Join Date
Aug 2002
Location
29 Palms, CA
Posts
170

## Possible anser to your question.

Maybe something at this site will help.

http://themathworksheetsite.com/

Cheers, Bob

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