Purpose of the ASVAB
The Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery, known as the ASVAB, is utilized by all branches of the United States military. The test determines a candidate's eligibility for enlistment as well as what positions he or she is well-suited for.
Does the ASVAB Provide Accommodations?
Legislation like the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 seeks to protect the rights of students with learning or physical disabilities. However, all branches of the United States Military are exempt from these acts when it comes to commissioned officers and its enlisted members. Only civilians working in the military are protected by this legislation.
As such, candidates with learning or physical disabilities will not be able to apply for accommodations on the ASVAB. The United States Department of Defense has the ability to set enlistment criteria that actively discriminate against individuals with disabilities. For example, a candidate with dyslexia may be unable to join the military because he/she might be unable to quickly process visual information in a crisis situation.
Candidates who cannot earn acceptable scores on the ASVAB without accommodations might want to explore an alternative ASVAB program. Other individuals might want to consider programs that can help them determine whether or not to take the test without accommodations. These options are highlighted below.
ASVAB Career Exploration Program
Individuals with a disability may want to join the ASVAB Career Exploration Program. This program is available to high school sophomores, juniors, and seniors as well as students in their first two years of post-secondary school. It is offered through partnerships with schools. If an exploration program is not available, candidates can visit the program's website to have information emailed to their school counselor.
The exploration program consists of three parts:
- ASVAB test with a score report that identifies students' technical, math, and verbal skills
- FYI: A questionnaire that helps students determine their work-related interests
- OCCU-FIND: A career database that helps students match their test scores with career options
The ASVAB Career Exploration program does offer accommodations for students during testing; however, it must be noted that their scores cannot be used for enlistment. All branches of the military require that the scores be from a standard testing session.
Within the exploration program, students can request the following accommodations for the ASVAB:
- Longer testing session
- Questions may be read aloud
- Test instructions may be provided via a sign language interpreter
- Large print tests
Candidates will need to request exploration program accommodations through their closest Military Entrance Processing Station by calling 1-800-323-0513.
ASVAB and Basic Education Courses
Many schools have an adult education division that can help students improve in reading, math or other skill areas identified by their ASVAB scores so they can pursue their career field of choice. Schools also offer ASVAB prep courses that include a pre-test, which could help candidates determine how well they would fare on the actual test if they were to take it without accommodations. These courses can also help students improve in their areas of weakness. Some educational institutions, such as Central Georgia Technical College, offer these classes for free.
Candidates who will be taking the ASVAB may benefit from utilizing the resources offered by Study.com. The resources will help candidates better understand the test and practice their math, science, and reading skills.