The PiCAT Pretest Can Help You Ace the ASVAB

Applicants who hope to join the Air Force can take the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery PiCAT pretest from any computer.
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Applicants who hope to join the military can take the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) pretest from any computer with internet access.

The pre-screening, internet-delivered computer adaptive test (PiCAT) is an unproctored version of the full ASVAB that currently provides recruiters with the ability to determine whether an applicant is qualified before sending them to a military entrance processing station (MEPS) or military entrance test (MET) site.

Recruiters provide applicants with a unique access code. The applicant must start the test within 72 hours. Once the test is started, he or she will have 24 hours to complete the test. After the test is complete, the recruiter will have the ability to view the applicant's score instantly.

What to expect from the PiCAT

By taking the PiCAT, an applicant will gain familiarity with the ASVAB, and recruiters will determine whether applicants will achieve qualifying scores on the official test. This knowledge potentially can save the recruiter time and the Air Force money.

"We are looking at saving the recruiter's valuable time," said Master Sgt. Carmellea Abercrombie-Stokes, the Air Force Recruiting Service's enlisted standards superintendent. "We are also looking at a cost savings at the MEPS with testing personnel. There will be fewer testers who are not likely to pass the ASVAB."

Like the proctored test, applicants will not be permitted to use external sources, such as books, internet or people, to assist them while they are taking the test.

"Since this test is taken by the applicant at their convenience, there is no way of knowing if they are being aided while taking the test," Abercrombie-Stokes said. "Since this is only a practice to indicate the ability to pass, we don't need to monitor the applicant while they take the test. However, when they arrive at MEPS, it will be evident if they took the test themselves by how well they do on the official entrance exam."

When combined with a short verification test delivered at MEPS or MET, an applicant's score of record for enlistment will be available. Applicants who fail the verification test or applicants who don't want to use their PiCAT scores will be routed into a full-length proctored ASVAB.

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