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Hiring exceptional teachers: 6 best assessment tools for educators


Whether you're hiring elementary school teachers or college educators, selecting strong candidates is a must. Mis-hiring educators is costly and can hurt students’ educational success, lower your institution’s academic performance, and create extra work for your existing staff.

Assessment tools help you hire the right educators by providing unbiased, data-based insights into your candidates' skills and knowledge. The best assessment software delves even deeper, helping you understand candidates’ personalities, motivations, and compatibility with your institution or organization.

Below, we explore the 6 best assessment tools to help you find the perfect educators for your open roles.

What are assessment tools?

Candidate assessment tools are resources that recruiters and HR professionals use to enhance their hiring processes and decisions. They help hiring managers and recruiters assess people’s suitability for a specific position and company. 

In the past, candidates might have been given a paper screening test to fill out. But these days, the most insightful tools are web-based assessment solutions.

Most tools let you customize your assessments. For example, you can combine different question types, such as multiple-choice and open-ended questions. The most valuable tools offer a diverse library of pre-made tests you can combine into comprehensive assessments. These include:

  • Skills tests, which measure proficiency in specific skills, such as languages, coding, or leadership.

  • Cognitive ability tests that assess intellectual abilities, such as problem-solving and critical thinking.

  • Personality assessments that give insight into candidates' behavioral traits and preferences.

  • Cultural fit tests, which determine how a candidate aligns with an organization's values and ways of working.

You might also be able to edit assessments and tailor their appearance to match your institution’s branding. With some platforms, you can even include video questions and gather video responses.

Candidates can complete assessments on their personal devices, and the results are calculated automatically.

Why use assessment tools when hiring educators?

1. Easily assess a wide range of skills

Effective educators must possess a mix of skills, knowledge, and personal attributes. Identifying such a broad range of qualities can be challenging with traditional hiring processes like interviews and resume screening, but assessment tools make this easy.

The best assessments for educators encompass multiple test types, each designed to evaluate key abilities and qualities. In a single assessment, you can measure job-relevant skills like communication, leadership, and problem-solving, plus personality traits like empathy and extroversion. You can also test their knowledge in subjects like mathematics or science based on the role they’ve applied for.

2. Find candidates who are great culture fits

Many tools offer dedicated cultural fit assessments, which enable you to measure how well candidates will mesh with your organization’s values and align with its mission. When you hire individuals who are strong culture fits, you reduce the likelihood of team friction and ensure your institution remains a productive, harmonious place to work.

3. Avoid bias during recruitment

Humans are always susceptible to unconscious bias, but assessment tools are objective and help reduce bias during hiring. 

This is because assessments evaluate candidates based on the same job-relevant criteria – and not on factors like their age, race, sex, or personal background.

Assessment tools will give clear, scientifically backed results that enable you to compare candidates objectively. You’ll make data-informed decisions rather than ones unintentionally influenced by biases.

4. Save time and money

Using candidate assessment tools speeds up the hiring process and saves you time and money in the long run. Here's how:

  • The automated aspect of candidate assessments means you can move quickly through the initial stages of the hiring process.

  • Assessment results can substantially reduce the time it takes to select candidates to interview or present with job offers.

  • The insights you get from assessments can enrich your interview process by enabling you to ask more relevant questions.

  • Being able to pinpoint the strongest applicants means you spend less time evaluating people who aren't suited to your role or institution and can avoid costly mis-hires.

  • The ability to assess candidates for cultural fit helps ensure cohesion within your educational staff. This helps you retain team members, leading to reduced turnover and lower recruitment costs.

What to assess when hiring educators

Educators' roles are varied, with a wide range of responsibilities. While one’s expertise in the subject they teach is fundamental to their success, it's usually their soft skills that make them an outstanding educator. 

For instance, qualities such as interpersonal skills, effective communication, and adaptability are pivotal for connecting with students and nurturing their development. Other skills and qualities are important, too.

Here are some universal factors to evaluate when hiring educators:

  • Pedagogical (teaching) skills

  • Classroom management skills

  • Ability to engage and build rapport with learners

  • Organizational skills and time management

  • Resilience to the stresses of education

  • Flexibility to adapt to new situations and syllabi

  • Ability to communicate complex ideas effectively

  • Ability to collaborate

  • IT competence

  • Subject-matter expertise

  • Motivation

6 best assessment tools for educators

6 best assessment tools for educators explanation graphic

Here are the best assessment tools on the market for hiring highly skilled educators: 

1. TestGorilla

TestGorilla Screenshot 01 Home

TestGorilla is a pre-employment screening platform that can help you hire exemplary educators. Our expansive test library includes role-specific skills tests and tests to assess broader capabilities, personality, motivation, cultural fit, and more. 

You can easily combine up to five tests into a focused assessment that gives you a clear picture of each candidate’s skills and insight into what they’re like as an educator. With most assessments requiring less than an hour to complete, testing is efficient and respectful of your candidates’ time.

To further speed up the process of creating your educator assessments, we’ve curated a catalog of teacher tests that look for fundamental skills applicable to various teaching positions. In addition, we provide a collection of tests to find the best candidates to teach young children, as well as tests to evaluate online English teachers

These collections include tests to assess how well candidates will gel with your existing staff and suit your organization's working practices.


  • 300+ scientifically validated tests

  • Fast and user-friendly

  • Data-focused results

  • Video functionality


  • Customizable assessments

  • Mobile-friendly software

  • Free plan


  • No built-in applicant tracking system (ATS)


  • Free Plan: Unlimited access to 10 tests (including all work-oriented personality tests), unlimited candidates, and limited custom question types.

  • Starter Plan (from $75/month): Unlimited tests, candidates, and account users. Upload files into custom questions, add candidate welcome videos, generate PDF reports, and set qualifying questions.

  • Pro Plan (from $115/month): Custom video questions, ATS integrations, and dedicated advisor support.

2. PowerSchool

PowerSchool offers a solution for hiring kindergarten through 12th grade (K-12) educators. It includes tests for teachers, principals, and support staff that measure teaching skills, cognitive ability, leadership abilities, and general personality traits. 

PowerSchool claims that its research-backed assessments provide objective data that gives a complete understanding of K-12 candidates.


  • Focuses on hard and soft skills

  • 100-question K-12 teacher assessment 

  • 120-question principal assessment 


  • Tests made specifically for teachers and educational staff

  • Research-backed assessments


  • Not suitable for assessing college or university educators

  • Not customizable


Contact PowerSchool for pricing options.

3. eSkill

eSkill has a large library of pre-employment assessments, including some for hiring within the education sector. For example, its Interpersonal Skills in a School Setting test can give insight into candidates' ability to communicate with parents and interact with co-workers.

That said, eSkill’s tests specifically tailored for educator roles are limited. In addition, eSkill has geared all its education hiring tests toward hiring for schools rather than higher-education institutions like colleges and universities.

The upside is that the platform offers video responses to questions and allows users to create custom assessments by combining tests.


  • Some teaching-specific tests

  • Large test bank

  • Video response question option


  • Ability to combine pre-made tests into unique assessments

  • Customizable tests


  • Tests aren’t suitable for hiring college professors and other adult educators

  • No motivation test


Contact eSkill for pricing options for upper-tier plans.

  • Small business plan (from $100/month): Access all assessments and 24/7 live support.

  • Staffing plan: Customize assessments and get expert guidance.

  • Basic plan: Unlimited assessments.

  • Premium plan: Add custom questions and branding.

  • Enterprise plan: Includes ATS integration.

4. Optimize Hire

Optimize Hire develops pre-employment assessments for various industries. Tests examine soft skills – including cognitive ability, personality, and motivation – and take roughly eight to 10 minutes to complete. 

The platform offers a test specifically for the education industry. It measures integrity, cooperation, and stress tolerance – essential traits for effective educators. However, there are no role-specific skills tests or assessments that evaluate hard skills.


  • Focuses on soft skills

  • Can assess any combination of traits

  • Suitable for screening candidates for various educational positions


  • Customizable tests

  • Fast assessments


  • Doesn’t test hard skills

  • No role-specific tests


There’s an annual fee based on the number of hires you expect to make over the next year. Contact Optimize Hire for more information.

5. HR Avatar

HR Avatar has more than 200 job-specific candidate tests, including assessments for teachers that measure teaching skills, cognitive abilities, and personality traits. Its pre-employment tests typically include video interviews in which candidates are asked to record their answers to pre-recorded questions. 


  • Test-building functionality for custom assessments

  • Offers short versions of assessments that don't include video

  • Standalone video assessment capability


  • Educator-specific tests

  • Measures essential educator attributes

  • Assessments take around 45 minutes to complete


  • No culture fit test

  • No motivation test


HR Avatar uses a candidate credit pricing model. 

  • 45 credits ($45): 1 test.

  • 1,125 credits ($1,000): 25 tests.

  • 4,500 credits ($3,375): 100 tests.

6. iMocha

iMocha offers pre-employment assessments measuring various hard and soft skills. Although the tests focus primarily on tech roles (and there are no teacher-specific tests), they can provide value when hiring educators. 

For instance, iMocha's 40-minute planning test evaluates skills such as prioritizing tasks, allocating resources, and managing time, which can give recruiters insight into a teaching candidate’s ability to plan lessons.


  • Option to increase and decrease the difficulty of tests

  • Tests for soft skills, language proficiency, and cognitive ability

  • Mobile-friendly assessments


  • Include custom questions

  • Option to request custom tests


  • No dedicated tests for assessing educators

  • No culture-add test


iMocha has two plans:

  • Professional plan: 1,200 candidate assessments and 300 candidate interviews.

  • Enterprise plan: Unlimited assessments and interviews.

 Contact iMocha for pricing information.

How to include assessment tools in a hiring campaign

To ensure your assessments provide optimal value, here are some of the ways to include them in your hiring process for teachers:

1. Know your ideal candidate

Identifying which subject-related skills, such as science or math expertise, and experience candidates need is usually easy. But other factors, such as attitude and cultural fit, can be harder to pinpoint.

Consider what personality traits are essential for your educational roles and your organization’s working environment. For instance, an elementary school teacher should know how to engage young learners, while a college philosophy professor should inspire curiosity in their young adult students.

Also, think about what qualifications your ideal candidate will have. For example, perhaps you’re looking for an educator with a leadership certification or a degree in secondary education.

Knowing what skills, traits, and qualifications your perfect candidate possesses will make it easier for you to interpret assessment results and separate decent applicants from exceptional ones.

2. Select relevant assessments

To ensure your assessments deliver the best results, they must be relevant to your open roles. You can save time by using pre-prepared tests that evaluate role-specific competencies. But you'll also want to check for other necessary skills and characteristics.

For example, communication skills are important to all educational positions, but other qualities may be more relevant to particular roles. While a school principal requires strong leadership abilities, for instance, leadership skills might not be as relevant for a tutor. Thus, you’d want to pick assessments that test leadership skills when hiring a principal.

Also, considering whether the position requires specific skills can help you choose appropriate assessments. For instance, does your teacher need to develop the curriculum? Does your classroom assistant need to be fluent in another language? 

Once you’ve answered these questions, select assessments that test these capabilities. For instance, you might pick a language proficiency assessment or a test that measures candidates’ subject knowledge and decision-making skills.

3. Use a multi-measure approach

Educators need diverse qualities, so taking a multi-measure approach is vital for making the right hiring decisions. If you rely on just one type of test – like a math skills test, for example – you'll only get part of the picture. 

Multi-measure testing, on the other hand, involves combining different tests to build comprehensive assessments. These measure various skills and aptitudes, giving you a well-rounded understanding of your candidates and their fit for the role.

For instance, to screen high school math teacher candidates, you could use a personality test alongside a math skills test to find individuals with the interpersonal traits it takes to teach teens.

4. Customize your assessment

The best assessment tools for educators offer customization options – the most popular being the ability to add custom questions to tests. You can ask ultra-specific questions that provide even greater insight into candidates’ skills and traits and shed additional light on their fit for your organization.

You can also use customization options to add employer branding to assessments. This way, you can reinforce your institution’s unique identity throughout the assessment process, creating a stronger connection between you and your candidates.

5. Consider the candidates' experience

Assessments provide value only when candidates complete them. To ensure your candidates do, you must make the assessment process user-friendly.

You can ensure user-friendliness by:

  • Choosing a tool that candidates can access on their mobile devices

  • Being mindful of candidates' time by ensuring they can complete assessments quickly – ideally in less than an hour

  • Being transparent and telling candidates why you're using assessments and what to expect from them

Even when a candidate isn't successful, a positive testing experience can reflect well on your institution.

6. Use assessments as one part of your hiring process

The best way to use candidate assessments is to integrate them into your larger hiring process and avoid relying on them as the sole basis for your hiring decisions. 

Also, it’s best to conduct assessments early on during recruitment. You can zero in on candidates with the skills and abilities necessary for the role and then invite them to interview. 

The insights you gain from candidate assessments can even inform the questions you ask during interviews. Let’s say a candidate’s assessment results show that they tend to shy away from conflict. Problems often arise in educational settings, so you could use your interview to ask the candidate to provide examples of how they’ve dealt with conflict in the past.

If you need ideas about questions you can ask, check out our selection of the best interview questions for school counselors.

Improve your educational hiring with TestGorilla

Assessment tools help you accurately evaluate candidates and find highly skilled individuals for your open roles. Of the many platforms out there, TestGorilla stands out as the most comprehensive option. 

You can choose up to five tests from our library of 300+ expert-developed tests, then add custom questions to create a bespoke assessment to evaluate your educator candidates. We provide a range of tests perfect for assessing teachers’ skills, personality traits, motivation, culture fit, and more.

Get started with TestGorilla today by signing up for a 30-minute live demo or a free plan.


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