How to Ace Your University of San Diego Tech Bootcamps Admissions Assessment

By: Emily Gregor
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We’re committed to doing everything we can to set students up for success. While our program is beginner-friendly, we’ve found that students with strong logical reasoning abilities are more likely to thrive in our curriculum. Because of that, one factor in admissions decisions is a student’s score on our 45-minute logic assessment.

We recognize some students may need a refresher on tackling logic-based questions. If you’re feeling this way, below are resources to help. Read on for sample problems similar to what you’ll find on our exam (along with an explanation of how you can use logic to find the answers), a video tutorial, and links for more practice.

Sample Problems & Answers

1. Based on the information below, what is the third number?

The average of three numbers is 24.

The average of two of these numbers is 29.

The answer is “14”.

Explanation: For this question, recall that an average = sum / number of elements. If the average of all three numbers is 24, their total sum is 72.
24 (the average) * 3 (the number of numbers used to calculate the average) = 72.
Thus, if the average of two of the numbers is 29, their sum is 58. 29 (the average) * 2 (the number of numbers used to calculate the average) = 58.
From there, you can subtract the second sum from the first sum to arrive at the final number: 72 (the sum of the three numbers) - 58 (the sum of two of the numbers) = 14.

2. Based on the information below, what is the code for ZAP?

Alphabet for your reference:


The code for CAT is XDO.

The code for PIN is KLI.

The answer is “UDK”.

Explanation: By analyzing CAT -> XDO and PIN -> KLI we can derive the pattern: for the first letter, go backwards in the alphabet five letters, for the second letter, go forwards three letters, and for the last letter, go backwards again five letters.

ZAP: Z backwards five letters is U, A forwards three letters is D, and P backwards five letters is K

How-To Video for Question 2

For a more thorough explanation of how to solve problem 2, check out this video from our team:

3. Based on the picture below, which one doesn’t belong?

  • A
  • B
  • C
  • D
  • E
sample doesnt belong

The answer is “B”.

Explanation: Option B has three small white circles, two small black circles, one small star, and one large star. The rest have two small white circles, three small black circles, one small star, and one large star.

4. Based on the pattern below, what is the next number?

2, 4, 3, 6, 5, 10, ___

The answer is “9”.

Explanation: The pattern is to multiply by 2, subtract 1, multiply by 2, and subtract 1, etc.

5. Based on the information below, what is the value of SUM after this FOR loop as finished executing?

The FOR loop is a specialized construct for iterating a specific number of times, often called a "counting" loop. In other words, FOR every iteration that matches the condition, EXECUTE this action.

With every iteration of the loop, any "variable" involved in the action within the loop gets manipulated and its value gets overwritten with the outcome of every action.

Using what you know about FOR loops and variable manipulation, walk through the pseudo-coded FOR loop below and fill in the blank of the resulting SUM value.

SUM = 0 (variable with a value beginning at 0) FOR every number (NUM) in [5,7,3,10,6] SUM = SUM + NUM END LOOP

The answer is “31”.

Explanation: The loop will run once for each number in the array ([5,7,3,10,6]), adding each number in the array to the SUM variable (which begins at 0). SUM will thus equal 5 + 7 + 3 + 10 + 6 = 31 after this loop finishes executing.

Additional Study Resources

If you feel like you could use more practice, visit these websites:

  1. Brainden: Logic Puzzles & Sequences
  2. Get Riddles: Math Riddles
  3. Khan Academy: Word Puzzles

Remember These Tips

  • Each question is weighted evenly, so don’t spend too much time on one question. If you get stuck, move on to the next question and only come back if you have time at the end.
  • Give yourself the full 45 minutes to complete the assessment—don’t open the assessment unless you’re sure you have enough time and a reliable internet connection.
  • Don’t get discouraged!! You can do this.
    • The practice problems on this post are designed to be difficult, and we don’t expect you to answer each one perfectly.

Ready to take the assessment? Get started today​ or check out one of our upcoming events​.​