Ace the ASVAB

ASVAB Questions

The following is a list of questions that are most frequently asked about the ASVAB and associated programs. These answers are divided into four categories:

General ASVAB Questions:

WHAT IF I FAIL THE ASVAB?

There is no pass or fail on the ASVAB. You cannot "ace" the ASVAB or "flunk" it! Your scores reflect your own abilities!

You will want to do your best so that you will be eligible for the military skill specialty that matches your ability and interests. In addition, to be eligible to enlist in one of the military services, you must obtain a minimum AFQT score, which varies between services.

WHAT’S THE AFQT?

To gain entrance into the military service, you must obtain a minimum qualifying score on the ASVAB—your AFQT (Armed Forces Qualification Test) score. Your AFQT score predicts your potential for training in military occupations. The AFQT score is based on youth population norms for males and females aged 18 to 23. In other words, your AFQT score reflects your standing compared to men and women in this age group.

WHAT SUBTESTS MAKE UP THE AFQT?

Your AFQT score is comprised of your test results in Arithmetic Reasoning (AR), Math Knowledge (MK), and Verbal Composite (VE) x 2. Your Verbal Composite score is a combination of your Word Knowledge and Paragraph Comprehension scores.

Your AFQT entrance score varies by service. Some occupations require higher sub test scores than others—these scores determine how qualified you are for certain military specialties.For instance, a career in journalism requires a higher ASVAB score than a career as a secretary. Why is that? There are moreverbal and analytical skills required in writing, editing, andcritiquing the written word. Contact your area recruiter to find out what score you need.

HOW LONG ARE ASVAB SCORES VALID?

ASVAB scores are good for two years.

IS THERE A SPANISH ASVAB?

No. This is a frequently asked question. The ASVAB test does not exist in any other language. Service regulations, technical manuals, operations orders, etc. are all written in English. You will have to be able to function in English in the military, which is why the ASVAB test is given in English only. If you score high enough on the ASVAB, and your native language is not English, you may be screened on the English Comprehension Level Test (ECL). The ECL is a standardized test which measures your listening and reading comprehension skills. Depending on your test results, you may be given follow-on testing and further training.

CAN I USE MY STUDENT ASVAB RESULTS FOR PROCESSING AT MEPS?

If you are 17 years of age, or older, you may process at the MEPS using Student ASVAB scores from a test you took in high school when you were 16 years old, provided you were a junior or senior when you took the test and the test has not expired (2 years from the date of test).

Sophomore tests are invalid for enlistment purposes regardless of age on the date of the test.

When can I take the ASVAB? Can I take it over again if necessary?

You can take the ASVAB as early as your sophomore year in high school. If you take the ASVAB as a sophomore your score will not be used for joining the military. If need be, you may retake the ASVAB after 30 days, and again 30 days later.

If I take the ASVAB, am I committed to joining the military?

Taking the ASVAB does not commit you to anything. A military recruiter may contact you after taking the ASVAB. The ASVAB can help you determine your own interests and aptitude even if you are not planning to enter the military or are undecided. It can help you choose courses for college and make your personal career decisions.

Does the ASVAB have any influence on my high school grades?

The ASVAB has no impact on your high school grades. You have nothing to lose, and everything to gain.

Where can I take the ASVAB?

It depends on which version of the ASVAB you intend to take. You can take the test at a nearby high school (Student ASVAB) or arrange to take it through a local recruiter (MET-site ASVAB or CAT ASVAB).

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CAT-ASVAB Questions:

WHAT DOES ADAPTIVE TEST MEAN?

An adaptive test tailors test questions to the ability level of the person taking the test. Each tester starts with a medium difficulty question. For instance, if the tester answers the question correctly he/she is given a question that is more difficult. If the tester answers the question incorrectly, he/she is given a question that is easier. Time is not wasted answering questions that are too difficult or too easy.

DO I HAVE TO KNOW HOW TO USE A COMPUTER TO TAKE THE CAT?

NO!!! You don’t need to have computer experience to take the CAT. Instructions are clear and simple; the computer keyboard has been modified so that only the keys needed to answer the test questions are labeled. A test administrator will go over instructions on how to use the keyboard.

WHY CAN’T I CHANGE MY ANSWERS ON THE CAT-ASVAB?

Since the CAT is an adaptive test, questions are given to you at your ability level. Once you have answered a question, you can’t go back.

WHAT IF I NEED HELP ON THE TEST?

On the computer keyboard is a red HELP KEY. If you need help, just press this key. Once the HELP key is pressed, test timing stops until you return to the test question. Time spent in HELP does not count against your sub test time limit.

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MET-site ASVAB Questions:

CAN I CHANGE MY ANSWERS?

Since the MET-site ASVAB is a pen and paper test, answers can be changed. Completely erase all changes you make—the answer sheet is run through a very sensitive scanner.

WHEN SHOULD I GUESS?

Try to do the best you can on the test, but if you don’t know an answer - guess. An incorrect answer does not count against you! Answers can be changed on the pen and paper version, but not on the CAT-ASVAB. If you are running out of time on a particular sub test, quickly guess at the remaining questions before time runs out. ASVAB scores are good for two years.

A CAREER IN JOURNALISM REQUIRES A HIGHER ASVAB SCORE THAN A CAREER AS A SECRETARY. WHY IS THAT?

There are moreverbal and analytical skills required in writing, editing, andcritiquing the written word.

WHERE IS THE MET-SITE TEST SCORED?

Test results are sent back to the MEPS by the test administrator. Before they are returned to the MEPS, the test administrator will give you a sealed envelope which contains your unverified test scores that you will give to your recruiter. Once your answer sheet has been scored at the MEPS, you will receive your verified test scores from your recruiter within a couple of days.

WHAT DO I NEED TO TAKE TO THE ASVAB TEST?
  • Bring an identification card to the CAT-ASVAB and the MET-site ASVAB,
  • Pencils (number 2), scratch paper, test booklets, and answer sheets are provided by your test administrator.
  • Do not use your own pencils or a pen on your answer sheet.
  • DO NOT bring a calculator. Calculators are not allowed at the test.
  • Make sure you use the bathroom before the test.

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Student ASVAB Questions

HOW DO I SIGN UP TO TAKE THE STUDENT ASVAB?

Ask your high school guidance counselor to make arrangements for you, or contact your local military recruiter. There is no cost for this examination.

CAN I USE MY STUDENT ASVAB RESULTS FOR PROCESSING AT MEPS?

If you are 17 years of age, or older, you may process at the MEPS using Student ASVAB scores from a test you took in high school when you were 16 years old, provided you were a junior or senior when you took the test and the test has not expired (2 years from the date of test).

Sophomore tests are invalid for enlistment purposes regardless of age on the date of the test.

WILL INCORRECT PERSONAL INFORMATION AFFECT MY TEST SCORES?

Your scores will be inaccurate if grade and sex are wrong. Remember you are being compared to your age group and males and females. If you are a junior andput senior on youranswer sheet, your scores will be lower as you are being compared to seniors, not juniors.

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