Are you as good at maths as you think you are?

Put your knowledge to the test

Experian – Consumer Credit Reference Agency

by National Numeracy | Independent charity

Aiming to improve adult numeracy in the UK


No one can question that good number skills pay off – research shows that those with better numeracy skills are on average £460 a year better off, better at saving money, and less likely to be unemployed. National Numeracy, a charity promoting the importance of what it calls ‘everyday maths’, also revealed that nearly half of adults in the UK have poor or low numeracy skills, equivalent to the level expected of a primary school child.

If you feel you’re already in the top half of the population then you might be intrigued to see just how your maths skills measure up. Are you really as good as you think you are at managing your day-to-day finances? Let’s find out! (And don’t worry if you’re among those who struggle to feel confident with maths. You’re not alone, and there is help available to brush up on your skills.)

Take the challenge

Join over 225,000 others in taking the National Numeracy Challenge, which is a free and confidential tool designed to assess your numeracy skills level. If you score 80 or more on the skills assessment you’ve achieved the essentials of numeracy – the everyday maths equivalent of a ‘C’ grade or ‘4’ at GCSE – and you’ll receive a digital badge and certificate.

It usually takes between 20 and 40 minutes to complete, but you can save it and come back to it on a later date if you need to. And it’s adaptive too, meaning that if you answer questions correctly, the questions will get harder, but if you answer incorrectly, they’ll get easier – so don’t be mistaken and think that you’ll find it too easy.


Why test your knowledge?

At the end of the National Numeracy Challenge the results are presented to you via a personalised report, separated into four key areas of numeracy: 

  • shape, space and measures
  • operations and calculations
  • handling data
  • numbers

It showcases the areas of maths which you’re competent in, and those which may require a little more work. You might even surprise yourself at which areas you have a strength in.

And if you’re the competitive type, you might like to share your results with your friends, family or colleagues and challenge them to take the challenge too! But on a serious note, taking the challenge will help you to understand if your skills are adequate for daily life and the workplace; and if they're not, what you can do to improve your awareness and ability.


Need to brush up?

If there is anything you find you’d like to improve on, don’t worry – when you register for the National Numeracy Challenge an online dashboard is created just for you, so you can see exactly what you need to spend some time thinking about and practising in order to improve. 

All of the numeracy tools on the National Numeracy website are free and straightforward to use, and the best bit is that you can log into your profile at any time and re-take the challenge to see if you have made progress against your original score. 75 percent of those who’ve already used the resources and then reassessed their skills have increased their ability in those particular areas, which just shows how beneficial using the tools is.

If you don’t have time to take the above National Numeracy Challenge, then why not take the short National Numeracy Quiz instead? This involves answering 10 everyday maths questions to get an understanding of your maths ability, with suggestions on how to improve your numeracy if you need to.

Before making financial decisions always do research, or talk to a financial adviser. Views are those of our mentors and customers and do not constitute financial advice.