Written by:
Abdul Wahaab MSc MBPsS
Organisational Psychologist


Attention-suppression appears to be increasingly valued by employers, and our new gamified assessment looks at just that.

As used by employers, such as within consulting, banking and technology, the Flanker Task (Eriksen & Eriksen, 1974) ultimately seeks to identify how you fare with regard to selective attention and executive control.

Candidates are required to focus on the centre fish, and the centre fish only. They must indicate, using their mouse, touchscreen or keyboard, which direction the centre fish is pointing, regardless of the direction of surrounding fish.

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The Flanker Task now available in your portal

The biggest factor at play is suppression, as it requires greater cognitive function to ignore the neighbouring fish when they are pointing in the opposite direction. It is far more straightforward from a cognitive standpoint to answer when both the centre and neighbouring fish point in the same direction.

Indeed, it is suppressing neighbouring fish that is the most challenging aspect of the game. Time pressure adds to this.

The simple nature of the Flanker Task game and many other game-based assessments keeps tips to a limit, however adopting a narrow field of view helps candidates focus on the centre only.

Simply head to the Games tab within the portal to try the assessment for yourself. The Flanker Task – now live for all our partners.