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Army prospect happy with her ASVAB test scores

Frequently Asked Questions

WHAT DOES THE ASVAB MEASURE?

The Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery measures your knowledge and ability in ten different areas. It is not an IQ test, but the ASVAB does help the Army assess which jobs you are best suited to perform.

HOW CAN I PRACTICE FOR THE ASVAB?

You don’t have to go through any special preparation to take the ASVAB. Getting a good night’s rest and arriving on time are the two most important steps you can take to prepare.

WHO GIVES THE ASVAB, AND WHERE CAN I TAKE IT?

The ASVAB is usually given in schools by test administrators from the federal government. Schools determine where and when the ASVAB will be given. See your academic advisor for more information. If you’re not currently in school, contact your local recruiter for more information on ASVAB requirements and testing locations. You may now also take an unproctored version of the ASVAB test, called the PiCAT, at home at your own convenience.

WHAT IS THE PiCAT?

The Pending Internet Computerized Adaptive Test (PiCAT) is an alternative to current ASVAB testing procedures. It is an unproctored, full version of the ASVAB you may take on your own time. In order to take this test, you will need to contact a local recruiter in order to register and receive an access code. After completing the test, you may contact your recruiter in order to find out your score. If you choose to enlist, your PiCAT score will be validated at the Military Entrance Processing Station (MEPS) with a proctored verification test that will take 25-30 minutes.

WHAT CAN I EXPECT ON THE DAY OF THE TEST?

The ASVAB consists of ten short tests to complete during three hours or less. An ASVAB test administrator will give you instructions and tell you how long you have to complete each test. However, before you begin, you will have a chance to answer some practice questions and ask any questions about taking the test.

WHAT KIND OF QUESTIONS WILL I BE ASKED ON THE ASVAB?

The ASVAB tests cover general science, arithmetic reasoning, word knowledge, paragraph comprehension, numerical operations, coding speed, auto and shop information, mathematics knowledge, mechanical comprehension and electronics information.

WHAT SCORE DO I NEED TO PASS THE ASVAB? WHAT DO MY SCORES MEAN, AND HOW ARE THEY USED?

While there is no "failing" the ASVAB, you will need to score at least a 31 on the exam to be considered for enlistment in the Army. Your scores will be provided to you on a report called the ASVAB Student Results Sheet, with additional information to help you understand your score.

Understanding the asvab test areas

The ASVAB is a series of tests developed by the Department of Defense and is used by the U.S. Army to determine whether you have the mental aptitude to enlist. The ASVAB also helps determine which Military Occupational Specialties (MOS) you qualify for. The ASVAB is required to enlist in the U.S. Army and is valid for two years. The ASVAB may be given in a computerized version at a Military Entrance Processing Station (MEPS) or in a paper version at various Military Entrance Test (MET) sites around the country or at high schools and colleges. 

ASVAB Test Areas

  • General Science - measures knowledge of life science, earth and space science, and physical science
  • Arithmetic Reasoning - measures ability to solve basic arithmetic word problems
  • Word Knowledge - measures ability to understand the meaning of words through synonyms
  • Paragraph Comprehension - measures ability to obtain information from written material
  • Mathematics Knowledge - measures knowledge of mathematical concepts and applications
  • Electronics Information - measures knowledge of electrical current, circuits, devices and electronic systems
  • Auto and Shop Information - measures knowledge of automotive maintenance and repair, and wood and metal shop practices
  • Mechanical Comprehension - measures knowledge of the principles of mechanical devices, structural support and properties of materials
  • Assembling Objects - measures ability with spatial relationships
 

 

ASVAB Scores and AFQT scores

The AFQT score is the most important ASVAB score, because it determines if you can enlist in the U.S. Army. However, the U.S. Army also converts the ASVAB test scores into 10 other composite score areas known as "line scores" that determine what MOS an individual may qualify for. Listed below are the parts of the ASVAB that affect your AFQT test scores and each of the ten line scores.

  • Armed Forces Qualification Test (AFQT) - Paragraph Comprehension, Word Knowledge, Mathematics Knowledge, and Arithmetic Reasoning.
  • Clerical (CL) – Word Knowledge, Paragraph Comprehension, Arithmetic Reasoning and Mathematics Knowledge.
  • Combat (CO) - Word Knowledge, Paragraph Comprehension, Auto & Shop and Mechanical Comprehension.
  • Electronics (EL) – General Science, Arithmetic Reasoning, Mathematics Knowledge and Electronic Information.
  • Field Artillery (FA) - Arithmetic Reasoning, Mathematics Knowledge and Mechanical Comprehension.
  • General Maintenance (GM) – General Science, Auto & Shop, Mathematics Knowledge and Electronics Information.
  • General Technical (GT) - Word Knowledge, Paragraph Comprehension and Arithmetic Reasoning (AR).
  • Mechanical Maintenance (MM) – Auto & Shop, Mechanical Comprehension and Electronic Information.
  • Operators and Food (OF) - Word Knowledge, Paragraph Comprehension, Auto & Shop and Mechanical Comprehension.
  • Surveillance and Communications (SC) - Word Knowledge, Paragraph Comprehension, Arithmetic Reasoning, Auto & Shop and Mechanical Comprehension.
  • Skilled Technical (ST) - Word Knowledge, Paragraph Comprehension, General Science, Mechanical Comprehension and Mathematics Knowledge.
 
 

  • PATRIOT Fire Control Enhanced Operator/Maintainer (14E)

    A Patriot Fire Control Enhanced Operator/Maintainer operates and maintains one of the world’s most advanced missile systems – Patriot; the center piece weapon system of the Army’s air defense mission against multiple air threats to include ballistic missile, cruise missiles, and aircraft of all types. The 14E is responsible for operating and maintaining the five major parts of the Patriot Fire Control system: Radar Set, Engagement Control Station, Electronic Power Plant, Antenna Mast Group, and Battle Command Post. The 14E Soldier is also responsible for identifying, tracking, and combating those identified threats using a technology advanced interceptor missile that is capable of destroying enemy air threats at a moment’s notice.

  • Aircraft Powerplant Reparier

    Aircraft Powerplant Repairer (15B)

    The aircraft power plant repairer is primarily responsible for supervising, inspecting and performing maintenance on aircraft turbine engines and components. With hundreds of Army missions depending on airplanes and helicopters, they must ensure that all of them are safe and ready to fly.

  • Aircraft Powertrain Repairer (15D)

    The aircraft powertrain repairer is primarily responsible for supervising, inspecting and performing maintenance on aircraft powertrain systems. With hundreds of Army missions depending on airplanes and helicopters, they must ensure that all of them are safe and ready to fly.

  • Soldier working on a UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter.

    Aircraft Electrician (15F)

    The aircraft electrician is primarily responsible for supervising, inspecting and performing maintenance on aircraft electrical systems. They ensure that the electrical systems on airplanes and helicopters are properly maintained and repaired.

  • Aircraft Structural Repairer (15G)

    The aircraft structural repairer is primarily responsible for supervising and performing maintenance on aircraft structures. With hundreds of Army missions depending on airplanes and helicopters, they must ensure that all of them are safe and ready to fly.

  • Soldiers preparing a helicopter for flight.

    Aircraft Pneudraulics Repairer (15H)

    The aircraft pneudraulics repairer is primarily responsible for supervising and performing maintenance on aircraft pneudraulics systems. With hundreds of Army missions depending on airplanes and helicopters, they must ensure that all of them are safe and ready to fly.

  • Soldier working on an AH-64 Apache helicopter.

    AH-64 Attack Helicopter Repairer (15R)

    The AH-64 attack helicopter repairer is primarily responsible for the maintenance of the AH-64 attack helicopters (also known as the “Apache”). With hundreds of Army missions depending on these helicopters, they must ensure that all of them are safe and ready to fly.

  • Kiowa Warrior Helicopters

    OH-58D Helicopter Repairer (15S)

    The OH-58D Helicopter Repairer is primarily responsible for the maintenance of the OH-58D helicopters (also known as the “Kiowa Warrior”). With hundreds of Army missions depending on these helicopters, they must ensure that all of them are safe and ready to fly.

  • UH-60 Helicopter Repairer (15T)

    The UH-60 helicopter repairer is primarily responsible for the maintenance of the UH-60 Helicopters (also known as the “Black Hawk”). With hundreds of Army missions depending on these helicopters, they must ensure that all of them are safe and ready to fly.

  • chinook helicopter on edge of cliff

    CH-47 Helicopter Repairer (15U)

    The CH-47 helicopter repairer is primarily responsible for the maintenance of the CH-47 Helicopters (also known as the “Chinook”). With hundreds of Army missions depending on these helicopters, they must ensure that all of them are safe and ready to fly.

  • Soldier prepares a fuel supply line aboard the U.S. Army Landing Craft Utility 2031.

    Watercraft Operator (88K)

    Watercraft operators are primarily responsible for navigation, cargo operations and supervising other Soldiers on Army watercraft. They are part of a piloting team using electronic positioning systems, handheld navigation tools and traditional watch standing procedures aboard many of the Army’s watercraft.

  • Soldier working on a pump.

    Watercraft Engineer (88L)

    Watercraft engineers are primarily responsible for supervising or performing maintenance on Army watercraft and auxiliary equipment on marine vessels.

  •  Soldier conducting railway loading operations.

    Railway Operations Crewmember (88U)

    Railway operations crewmembers are primarily responsible for supervising and operating diesel-electric locomotives and related equipment. They also serve as a crewmember or brakeman in the makeup and movement of railway cars and trains.

Insert your line scores above to see what jobs you could be qualified for.

OTHER RESOURCES TO PREPARE FOR THE ASVAB TEST

Check out other Department of Defense websites for more information about the ASVAB and AFQT tests and practice questions.

March 2 Success

March 2 Success provides materials to help improve scores on the standardized tests, such as SAT, ACT, state exit exams and ASVAB.

ASVAB CAREER EXPLORATION PROGRAM

The ASVAB Career Exploration Program was developed with input from a panel of career-development experts and designed to encourage students to increase their level of self-knowledge and to understand how that information could be linked to civilian and military occupational characteristics.

Today's Military

Today's military website provides a section dedicated to exploring military tests, specifically the ASVAB, and helping potential military candidates learn more about their skills and interests, helping match them up with possible career paths.

ARMY CAREER EXPLORER

Take a look at the jobs and career paths that fit your goals by creating an account and exploring your options. Part of the Army career explorer is a practice ASVAB test that will give you a general idea of your strengths and weaknesses, and average ASVAB score.