The SAAF Forum

Discussion on the SAAF and other southern African air forces.
It is currently 11 Aug 2020, 09:20

All times are UTC + 2 hours

Post new topic This topic is locked, you cannot edit posts or make further replies.  [ 5 posts ] 
Author Message
PostPosted: 21 Jun 2007, 17:39 
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: 29 Jun 2004, 17:19
Posts: 7903
The Vienna Test is a computer-assisted application of a large number of highly diverse psycho-diagnostic tests, measuring reaction times in a task that required choosing among complex stimuli.

The following is an extract from a Department Briefing to the Portfolio Committee on Defence on Psychometric Testing in the Department of Defence (DoD) held on 19 June 2007.

Research overview on the use of the VTS in the SAAF Pilot Selection Test Battery

Consists of numerous subtests (27+)

For Selection purposes:
- Determination Unit (DT)
For Research purposes:
- Cognitrone Test
- Two-hand coordination Test
- Pilot Spatial Test
- Time-Movement Anticipation Test
Need to include Multi-tasking subtest


Application of determination test

- Measurement of reactive stress tolerance
- Ability to give sustained multiple-choice reactions to rapidly changing stimuli
- Detect attention deficit disorders and color blindness

Theoretical background

The DT measures Reactive Stress Tolerance and related reaction speed ito:
- Discrimination of colours and acoustic signals,
- The memorization of the relevant characteristics of stimulus configurations and response buttons as well as assignment rules,
- The selection of the relevant reactions according to assignment rules
- Continuous, sustained rapid and varied reactions to rapidly changing stimuli


Test Administration
- The computer-aided implementation of tests guarantees that the instructions as well as the presentation of stimuli are equal for all subjects and independent of the test administrator
- Evaluation
Registration of data and comparison of norm samples is carried out automatically by the computer, thus the possibility of miscalculation is eliminated
- Interpretation
As the test is a standardized performance test, interpretation objectivity is evident (Lienert, 1961)

Interpretation of test results

Correct reactions on time
- This indicate how well a subject adapts to a pre-set presentation duration of stimuli.
- This ability (to adapt) depends on two factors:
Subjects have to pace their reaction time in such a way that they do not get off the track
They have to make sure that there is enough time in between each stimulus to make the right decision
- T-scores above 60 and below 40, (or percentiles) above 84 and below 16) demonstrate a development of this ability above or below average, respectively
- Poor performance is indicated by:
A low score of correct responses on time (compared to the norm sample)
A proportional decrease in the number of correct responses on time when the presentation time of the stimuli is diminished

Delayed and Omitted reactions
- Usually, when the presentation time of the stimuli is decreased, a growing number of reactions are first delayed, then omitted.
This results from the fact that the speed at which the stimuli are presented accounts for the most difficult condition of the test
- The initial increase in the number of delayed reactions versus omitted reactions is a normal function of our attention
This function guarantees that a reaction is screened from external distractions (in this case the interruption of the stimulus presentation) and thus is carried out even though a new stimulus appears.
- A high number of omitted reaction (T-score below 40 due to reversed scale) combined with a low number of delayed reactions (T-score under 40) would therefore indicate attention deficits.

Incorrect Reactions
- Incorrect reactions indicate the tendency to confuse stimuli
- The Response Matrix can locate where such confusions accumulate
- In contrast to delayed and omitted reactions, incorrect reactions are not so much an indicator of the difficulty of the test.
- Usually, the number of incorrect responses increases only slightly when the presentation time of the stimuli is decreased
- Incorrect reactions occur mainly because the subjects are unable to screen appropriate responses from concurrent and irrelevant external distractions
Thus, the variable “Incorrect Reactions” is closely linked to any attention deficits
- The number of incorrect reactions indicates the subject’s tendency to give a rapid response at the very last moment under the pressure of limited presentation time

The Three Phases:



The following sites may also prove useful: ... egory=2013

Last edited by Dean on 22 Jun 2007, 09:28, edited 4 times in total.

 Post subject:
PostPosted: 21 Jun 2007, 17:44 
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: 29 Jun 2004, 17:19
Posts: 7903
The following are quotes from members of this forum:

Dont stress too much about Vienna Buddy, You've gone solo, so i doubt you're co-ordless, remember the object of Vienna is more about how you recover from a crisis (quick changes to light and sounds) then about doing it perfectly.... if you make a mistake, just keep calm and press on as well as you can.....I made lots of mistakes, but I think i always recovered and fortunately made it out with a triple A which is a good pass (as I understand it)

The only thing to watch out for is the Vienna test (hand eye co-ordination test)

Everyone makes it out to be difficult when isnt at all...

Don't listen to the others..they will only psych you out!

Thats where I made my mistake... by listening to others...

The most important thing is to stay calm..

When i went for selections in FEB 2005 these were the following tests conducted on the VTS in this exact order. Previews available at

1. Cognitrone (COG)
2.Reaction Test (RT)
3.Determination Test (DT) (This test is where 90% fail the Vienna)
4.Time-Movement Anticipation (ZBA)
5.Visual Pursuit Test (LVT)

Ok,im going to try and explain it as accurately as possible.
Its starts of relatively slow, for example 1 colour every 2 sec..then it begins to speed up and simultaneously it starts throwing a High or low pitch sound at random intervals.At the same time but also at random intervals one of the squares at the bottom left and right corners become white and you obviously hit the appropriate rudder pedal depending on whether its the left or right box that lit up.

It continues to throw the colours + sound + rudder (left or right) at a faster and continually accelerating rate for about 2 min.then it slows down about 1 colour per second for 1 min etc.. and then it speeds up again for the last time until the test is finished.The entire DT test lasts about 10 min. (PICTURE)

Now,the trick is,not to chase your mistakes because the DT test is designed in such a way that YOU WILL FALL BEHIND WHEN IT STARTS SPEEDING UP.

Most people panic because they cant keep up,they fall behind and try to correct their mistakes by chasing the colours that were flashed.

At one stage i can remember being about 2 colours behind the computer for instance : A GREEN FLASHED BUT i still wanted to hit a blue and a yellow from before...AND THATS WHAT YOU SHOULDNT DO.

What you have to do is when things get out of hand (too fast),stop for 2 sec and start again with the latest colour that flashed,so that you can keep up with the test... DONT WORRY ABOUT STOPPING FOR 2 SEC BECAUSE as my friend said (who passed the vienna)

The DT test is a STRESS TOLERANCE TEST. It doesnt measure how good you perform at a fast rate,because its gonna go faster than you!!! It merely measures HOW QUICKLY YOU RECOVER WHEN THINGS GET OUT OF if you stop for 2 sec and start again,you've recovered quickly whereas if you just continuously try and keep up by chasing the colours without stopping then you are going to continually make more and more mistakes...and thats when you fail.

My mistake was that i stopped for 5-6 sec and not obviously my test results show that i freeze when things get out of hand...and that wasnt the case... i just paused for too long at a time.

My answer to your second question: How can you practice...
well...all advice that i can give u,is either
1. BUY THE VIENNA TEST SYSTEM (but its over R100 000)
2.Find someone/company who has the vienna system and ask them if you can practice on it (thats what im trying to do...)

3. memorize the Vienna test system - KEYBOARD layout get a friend to make a long list of random colours + high and low pitch sound + left or right rudder pedal and have him or her read it out to you at increasing rate and practice it in your mind pretending that the keyboard is in front of you.

PostPosted: 31 Jan 2008, 16:24 

Joined: 30 Jan 2008, 01:44
Posts: 2
You may find some use of this:

You can see Czech copy of original Vienna Determination Unit on these pictures. Two years ago I realized need of determination unit and there was none on the market except that one from Schuhfried and that one was far to expensive for me. For that reason i developed my own. I cannot guarantee that sequence I use is exactly the same as that one used in VTS, but it should be very similar to. Our test has three parts:

1) In part one only visual stimuli (colour circles) are presented to you and you react on them by pressing coresponding colour buttons on the control panel.

2) In second part you can hear sound in adition to visual stimuli. If you hear the sound, you should press one of two outer white buttons. Left white button for deep, bass sound and right white button for high, peep sound.

3) At last you can hear sound stimuli, colour circles appear as well and in adition to this one of two boxes on the bottom of screen lights up (white). When the white box appears you have to press one of pedals - left pedal for left box, right pedal for right box.

Before each of these stages you have a short try which is not counted to your end result. All three parts starts at slow speed and then accelerate two times. (1,6-1,2-0,9sec. per stimuli by default, but you can change it in configuration)

Our software is available only in Czech language, but it is very intuitive and we can send you paper with all the words and phrases used in the test and related database translated into English. Even the localization would be possible for some small amount of money.

If you are interested, you can contact me at

Price of the test (software+control panel+wheel and pedals) is 2.200 USD or 1.500 EUR plus postal charge.
As You can use any USB game controler with wheel and pedals with our software, I would send you just the control panel and software without pedals, because postal charge for the game controler will be probably the same as its price. I will reduce the cost 100USD or equivalent and you can easily buy some game controler yourself.

PostPosted: 16 Mar 2008, 03:43 

Joined: 30 Jan 2008, 01:44
Posts: 2
I have just decided to change control panel for a touch screen and there are two classical D-units left. I am offering these for half a price. They were being used for some time, but are 100% functional and look like a brand new.

PostPosted: 23 Apr 2015, 15:40 
Site Admin
User avatar

Joined: 29 Jun 2004, 17:19
Posts: 7903
Ijani wrote:
Here are some facts about the topic. Hope it helps:

Navigators and Pilots used to have the same selection battery but this will change soon-only IF there is a need to separate the two job profiles.

Both profiles (for Pilots as well as Navigators) are being re-evaluated by both the SAAF and MPI.

This evaluation is done through a well-structured scientific process and takes time.

The VTS (Vienna, Psychomotor) will still be part of the Navigator selection battery.

Some notes on the VTS (Vienna/psychomotor):

It is not possible to “fail” or “pass” a psychological test! It is just not how psychometric tests work. If you want to know how they work, go and study psychology.

Do NOT listen to "stories" and "advice" on how to "pass" the VTS/Vienna.

This advice is mostly well-meant but we have seen that it does more harm than good as candidates concentrate more on the stories and advice and they often do not focus on the job that is required of them.

If you “train” on a VTS unit (which is illegal), you can in fact condition yourself to respond to the test in an ineffective manner! On the interpretation form after the test, ineffective response patterns are actually emphasised (i.e. not good).

A real psychologist will not allow a client to do harm to themselves in this manner by letting them “practise” on the system. It was not what the test was designed to do in the first place.

You cannot buy the VTS even if you have the money to do so. The distributors of the test in South Africa (Dover Systems and JVR) are prohibited by law to sell a psychological test to a non-registered person. Proof of registration with the HPCSA is required before the test may be sold.

The VTS is a registered psychometric test. Only psychologists registered with the Health Professions Council of SA (HPCSA) are allowed to buy, use and interpret psychometric test results. If someone lets you "train" on a VTS system he/she is breaking the law.

If you break the law (or are an accomplice) you will not become a SAAF pilot.

If a “psychologist” lets you "train" on the VTS, he/she is probably not a real psychologist and if he/she is identified, legal action will definitely be taken against them for rendering medical services to the public as an unregistered individual. - If the person is registered with the HPCSA he/she will definitely lose their registration as a psychologist (at least).

What CAN you do to prepare?

Don’t let people make you anxious by listening to their experiences with the VTS. Let the mistakes you make (if any) be your own mistakes and not theirs. We have seen many applicants trying to “apply a system” or “to have a strategy” but by default they are not focussing on the correct things and it is almost always a recipe for disaster.

Forget about what you have heard and about all your preconceptions about the VTS and: Listen attentively to the instructions and follow the instructions.

Do not expect too much from the test. No, that is not a mistake: Do not expect too much from the test. It is in fact a very simple and straightforward test and definitely NOT the terror of all terrors that might befall you as so many have claimed before.

Just try your best and perform as well as you can. Remember you have a chance of a lifetime when you go through to the VTS testing phase. Don't mess it up by trying to "beat the system”. You are dealing with professionals in human behaviour. They have been doing this for many years and they know what to look for.

Once you start with the test, only two things must be on your mind:

The test administrators will go out of their way to make you feel comfortable and relaxed and they will make sure that you clearly understand all the instructions before you start. There are plenty of practise phases that is part of the system where you can get a feel for the test and ask questions when you don’t understand.

This is why you don’t need to have had exposure to computer games and technology as is suggested by some. This is completely different to ANYTHING you have seen before and you only need to follow instructions, concentrate and focus.

Don’t get discouraged when YOU think that things are not going well for you – KEEP ON GOING UNTIL THE TEST IS FINISHED! Not even the test administrators know how things went until they have studied the results afterwards. It is impossible to determine how people performed by just watching them do a test – it’s kind of silly to assume that!

Hope this helped a bit. Just be yourself, do your best and see where the road takes you.

Good luck.

How come every time my ship comes in, I'm at the airport?

Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic This topic is locked, you cannot edit posts or make further replies.  [ 5 posts ] 

All times are UTC + 2 hours

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group