IQ Test Labs

Discover your intellectual strengths


Cognitive abilities

Culture-fair matrices properties
  • Learn which properties are associated with which items, zones, and actions.
  • Item sets and number sequences are the properties that are more likely to appear in questions.
  • Gaining familiarity with common properties leads to faster solutions and dissolves some of the complexity of more difficult questions.

Culture-fair matrices: Properties

List of properties:

  1. Item set: A collection of identical items or items that share a common theme.
  2. Number sequence: An ordered list of items.
  3. Result: The result of an arithmetic operation.
  4. Constant: Fixed number.
  5. Position: The location of items in the matrix.
  6. Angle: The angle between shapes, usually lines.
  7. Size: Items that are relatively larger or smaller than each other.
  8. Direction: The line along which items lie or move, with reference to the point toward which they are directed.

Culture-fair matrices properties

Fig 1: Item set

Set one: Large triangles. Three large item sets: triangles/squares/circles.

Set two: Small triangles. Three small item sets: triangles/squares/circles.

Answer: Outer triangle/inner triangle.

Fig 2: Item set

Set one: Parallel lines. Three main item sets: parallel bars/Hs/squares.

Set two: Wave distortion. Three form sets: wave/horizontal/diagonal.

Number sequence: 3. Number sequence: 3,4,5.

Answer: 3 wavy parallel lines.

Fig 3: Position

Squares move to the right and down one row.

When there is no more space, the leftmost cell moves down a row.

Answer: Center, center right, and leftmost bottom cells.

Fig 4: Angle.

Rows one and two: The half-lines and the complete line move CW.

Row three: The complete line moves CW. One of the two half-lines moves CW and the other CCW.

Common associations

Properties are often associated with specific items, zones, and actions.

1. Item set

Items: Item sets emerge from identical items or emerging themes in a group of items.

Items: Multiple item themes may imply multiple item sets.

Zones: Item sets appear frequently in both 'rows' and 'irregular cells.'

Actions: Items sets are created through matching items.

2. Number sequence

Items: Number sequences usually define an item sets.

Items: Number sequences appear in both main and smaller secondary items.

3. Result

Items: Sides or smaller secondary shapes are often associated with additive or multiplicative operators.

Actions: Results involve addition, subtraction, multiplication and division.

4. Constant

Items: Sides or smaller secondary shapes are usually associated with constants (fixed numbers).

Zones: A constant applies to a whole matrix when all the cells contain the same number of matching items.

5. Position

Items: Position uually applies to smaller shapes in individual nine-cell grids.

Actions: Position is mostly associated with move and rotate.

6. Angle

Items: Lines are most often associated with angles.

Zones: Due to the complexity of distinguishing and comparing angles, the angle property appears mostly in rows.

Actions: Angles are usually formed due to the rotation of lines.

7. Size

Items: Size applies to both lines and shapes.

Actions: The size property is associated with 'resize.'

8. Direction

Items: Direction usually applies to arrows and smaller secondary items.

Actions: The direction property is usually associated with 'rotate' and 'mirror.'

Test your skills with these worked examples!