**Alex Hollis**, Founder & Wonderlic Expert, Beat the Wonderlic

April 9, 2017

The following is an explanation for QUESTION 15 from our Free Wonderlic Test. The strategy listed below is just one of many from my online course, which has helped thousands of people beat their Wonderlic test and land their dream job.

15. A number in the series below has been omitted. What is the missing number?

1/288 __?__ 1/72 1/36 1/18 1/9

A. 1/124

B. 1/206

C. 1/194

D. 1/144

E. none of these

This is a similar to Question 5, so this explanation will be similar.

Pattern questions are one of those things that you simply get better at with time. The more you practice and the more pattern types you are exposed to, the more easily and quickly you can recognize them (COUGH – get 3 more Wonderlic Practice Tests here – COUGH). Excuse me…that was weird.

That being said, we do have a strategy that you can apply to help you efficiently recognize patterns in the case where you have difficulty distinguishing one.

**How to approach patterns on the Wonderlic test**

Let’s walk through Question 15 from the free Wonderlic practice test together.

15. A number in the series below has been omitted. What is the missing number?

1/288 __?__ 1/72 1/36 1/18 1/9

A. 1/124

B. 1/206

C. 1/194

D. 1/144

E. none of these

**1. Look at the first two numbers in the series.**

If you do not recognize the pattern, just analyze the first two numbers in the series that occur without an omission. Don’t get thrown off by these being fractions -since the denominators are the only thing changing, that is all I am going to focus on.

So, how do you get from 72 to 36?

There are two ways:

**Subtract 36**: 72 – 36 = 36

**Divide by 2**: 72 ÷ 2 = 36

**2. Check by applying these operations to the next numbers in the pattern.**

We now see if subtracting 36 from 36 will get us to 18 OR if dividing 36 by 2 gets us to 18.

**Subtract 36**: 36 – 36 = 0 (**this is not our pattern**)

**Divide by 2**: 36 ÷ 2 = 18 (**this one works!**)

**3. Apply the operation to find the missing number in the sequence.**

Now that we know that our pattern tells us to divide each denominator by 2 to get the following denominator, we simply need to apply this operation to the missing number in order to get our answer.

288 ÷ 2 = 144

1/144 is our answer

**Answer: D.**

We go through all of the most common patterns in my self-paced online Wonderlic course, but let’s do one more together.

Patterns (series) questions on the Wonderlic Test become easier with practice.

The more patterns you see, the faster you will recognize them on the real exam.

**Another Wonderlic test example question.**

What is the next number in the series?

3 6 12 24 48 __?__

A. 64

B. 96

C. 112

D. 184

E. 222

**1. Look at the first two numbers in the series.**

How do you get from 3 to 6? There are two ways:

**Add 3**: 3 + 3 = 6

**Multiply by 2**: 3 x 2 = 6

**2. Check by applying these operations to the next numbers in the sequence.**

We know that the pattern is likely one of these two operations. Now we check by applying these two operations to the second and third numbers in the sequence.

**Add 3**: 6 + 3 = 9

**Multiply by 2**: 6 x 2 = 12 (**this is our pattern!**)

**3. Apply the operation to find the missing number in the sequence.**

Now that we know that our pattern tells us to multiply each number by 2 to get the following number, we can apply this operation to the final number in order to get the missing number in the sequence.

48 x 2 = 96

**Answer: B.**

How did you do? Was our strategy helpful? Let us know in the comments section!

Also, if you want to continue practicing patterns and also learn all of the different pattern types that we have seen on real Wonderlic tests, check out my online Wonderlic course.

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