What is the Highlands Ability Battery?

The Highlands Ability Battery (HAB) is an online test. Studying for the test is not recommended nor really possible. We do recommend, however, that the test be taken by those for whom English is their first language. You can take the HAB in any quiet location where you have access to a computer, mouse, and headphones, and where you will not be interrupted. The HAB takes about 3-3.5 hours to complete. You can take the test in one sitting or multiple sittings. Once you have purchased the HAB, you will receive your registration code and test instructions by email within 24 hours. You will receive your results in the form of multiple reports as soon as you have completed the test. 

The HAB tests three personal style traits, fourteen abilities, and one skill. With the exception of one personal style trait, all the work samples have objective measures; results are not based on subjective self-reporting like most personality tests. The HAB is unique in that it measures your abilities based on performance rather than perception. Each work sample is timed, and you will likely feel the pressure of time for most parts of the test. Timing the work samples is important because the abilities that come naturally to us are immediate and instinctive. If given unlimited time, most of us could complete most or many of the work samples. Timing the work samples helps us determine more accurately which of the abilities are truly natural to us.

An example of a work sample that tests the ability to pick out a pattern from seemingly unrelated data: 

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Image courtesy of the Highlands Company


your HAB consultation

The HAB is the property of The Highlands Company and is only available for purchase through a Highlands Certified Consultant (HCC). The plethora of reports you receive upon completion of the HAB can feel somewhat overwhelming. The 1.5-2 hour debrief with your HCC is not only the personal touch that is quintessential to the philosophy of The Highlands Company, but as you will likely find, quite necessary for a deeper understanding of your natural abilities. The graphic below is an example of a HAB profile that you will receive as soon as you complete the test. During your consultation, your HCC will not only describe each ability, but will illustrate the practical implications of each of your ability scores and explain the unique combinations of certain abilities and personal styles that reveal, among other things, your reasoning and learning styles. She will also show you how to use the multiple different reports to which you will have lifetime access from your Client Portal.

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your hab profile

Your HAB profile will give you scores that put you at the low, mid, or high range of any particular ability that we measure. Those terms, low-mid-high, are unfortunately loaded in our society to evoke school grades where low is bad and high is good. In the world of abilities, however, such notions must be discarded. Think of your abilities as more akin to personality. There are pros and cons to each type of ability score, much as there are pros and cons to different personality types. The graphic below illustrates how high and low scores indicate different natural abilities. 

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 Image courtesy of the Highlands Company



Why does the HAB test vocabulary?

The HAB tests one and only one skill which is acquired primarily through education: vocabulary. This is the only test that measures achievement. We test vocabulary although it is not an ability, because vocabulary is a singularly important predictor of what types and levels of a job may be available to you. Take the following example: Your test results show that police detective work and emergency medicine are among some career options that would be a good fit for your ability profile. If your vocabulary score is in the 10th percentile, getting into college and medical school will be a challenge. If your vocabulary score is in the 85th percentile, the police force may not be a comfortable fit. The underlying ability pattern may be the same for a good police detective and an ER doctor, but many other factors, including education and interests, must be factored in. And only you can navigate your ship through these waters. Remember, the goal is to discover how you are wired, and working with several other factors, to chart the course that best suits you.