How do I prepare for the ASVAB?
Preparing for any exam is critical for maximizing your score. Your ASVAB score will influence your military career. You can develop a strong knowledge base by taking courses in English, science, and mathematics at an accredited high school or college in order to prepare for the corresponding subtests. It would also be beneficial to you to take technical courses to be familiar with the more occupational-related subtests.
For an extensive overview of the ASVAB, check out the ASVAB Practice & Study Guide. This resource covers each part of the exam through detailed transcripts and lesson videos. You'll also be able to ask a remote instructor for guidance should you have any trouble understanding the material. There are also practice quizzes and a final practice exam you can take to hone your skills.
Another effective way to prepare is to view and answer ASVAB sample questions. You can access free sample test questions on the ASVAB official website. As an added benefit, these test questions will allow you to understand the layout of the exam. This will help you determine in advance if you would like the take the P&P ASVAB (written test) or the CAT-ASVAB (computer administrated) version of the test. Make sure you allow yourself plenty of rest both during your study periods and before the night of your exam.
How do I pass the ASVAB?
On test day, be sure to read each question carefully and only select one answer per question. Use the process of elimination to better determine the answer, and feel free to guess if you don't know the answer since it won't count against you. To make sure you answer the most questions possible, be sure to keep track of time since there are time limits for the tests.
The ASVAB is composed of several subtest subjects with a set number of questions. These subjects range from mathematics and communication, to more technical fields like electronics and mechanics. Here's a breakdown of the sections and some online resources that can help you prepare:
- General Science | Intro to Natural Sciences Study Guide
- Arithmetic Reasoning | Mathematical Reasoning & Problem-Solving Study Guide
- Word Knowledge | Analyzing Words in Context while Reading
- Paragraph Comprehension | Writing Organization
- Math Knowledge | ASVAB Math Study Guide & Test Prep
- Electronics Information | Intro to Electricity Study Guide
- Mechanical Comprehension | Intro to Mechanics Study Guide
- Assembling Objects | Product Design Study Guide
- Auto and Shop Information
What is a passing score on the ASVAB?
To pass you must score at or above the standard score of other test-takers at your same ability level. Scores on the ASVAB are determined by an Item Response Theory (IRT) system that measures the probability of how candidates at a given level of ability will score. The test is designed to ask questions for the test taker's precise level of ability. To measure your performance, your score is measured against a standard score. This standard score reflects the amount of standard deviation that a score is above or below the set mean.
The mean score of the ASVAB subtests is 50, with the standard deviation being 10. For example: if you score a 30, this means that your standard deviation was 2 units (measured in 10s) below the mean. However, if you score a 60 on your test, you scored 1 deviation above the mean.
As part of the ASVAB, you also receive a score on the Armed Forces Qualification Test (AFQT). The AFQT commutes the scores from four sections to evaluate basic knowledge, while the rest of the subtests are designed to identify someone's aptitude for a particular career path.