Performing poorly on the ASVAB will impact not only your ability to enter the military but can also determine what military job you are qualified for, your advancement opportunities, and even your potential salary.

Here at, we provide comprehensive study guides for each section of the ASVAB test that will help you prepare to ace the Armed Forces Vocational Aptitude Battery.  The ASVAB exam is a series of multiple-choice questions broken down into 9 subjects with an emphasis on determining your aptitude in four primary areas: Math, Verbal, Science and Technical, and Spatial. 

To ensure you get the highest score possible, start preparing now with our comprehensive study guides and free ASVAB practice tests.

Recommended ASVAB Study Guides

Using the right ASVAB study guide is essential to ensure the best possible outcome when preparing for the exam.

ASVAB Study Guide

ASVAB for Dummies

Kaplan ASVAB Prep Plus 

Mometrix ASVAB Secrets

Barron's ASVAB Flashcards

Practice Tests


Online Videos

About the ASVAB Test: The Definitive Guide

The ASVAB is NOT an IQ test. It’s a military entrance test designed to predict your ability to learn skills required for the United States military services branches. The ASVAB measures knowledge in ten areas: general science, math, verbal expression, mathematics knowledge, paragraph comprehension, word knowledge, word comprehension skills, and arithmetic reasoning.

The actual score you receive on the ASVAB is not necessary; what matters most is how well you do relative to other people who took the same exam. This score is reported as a percentile ranking between 1-99%. 

Let’s get more information about the ASVAB.

An Overview of the ASVAB Test

The ASVAB (Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery) is the most widely used set of examinations in the world. Its primary goal is to evaluate a candidate’s general ability and potential for success in military occupations within the United States Military.

The ASVAB score you obtain will most likely determine your initial military job and, perhaps, potential promotion chances.

Those interested in taking the ASVAB should contact their local military recruitment office to set up testing appointments. The ASVAB is given at over 60 Military Entrance Processing Station (MEPS) and other test sites in federal buildings, colleges, and facilities around the country.

If you do not pass the ASVAB on your first try, there is a waiting period before retaking it. If this process happens three times without success, then six months will DPS-ing between each attempt.

Computer-Assisted ASVAB

  • General Science: 15 questions, 10 minutes
  • Arithmetic Reasoning: 15 questions, 55 minutes
  • Word Knowledge: 15 questions, 9 minutes
  • Paragraph Comprehension: 10 questions, 27 minutes
  • Mathematics Knowledge: 15 questions, 23 minutes
  • Electronics Information: 15 questions, 10 minutes
  • Auto Information: 10 questions, 7 minutes
  • Shop Information: 10 questions, 6 minutes
  • Mechanical Comprehension: 15 questions, 22 minutes
  • Assembling Objects: 15 questions, 17 minutes

Paper and Pencil ASVAB

  • General Science: 25 questions, 11 minutes
  • Arithmetic Reasoning: 30 questions, 36 minutes
  • Word Knowledge: 35 questions, 11 minutes
  • Paragraph Comprehension: 15 questions, 13 minutes
  • Mathematics Knowledge: 25 questions, 24 minutes
  • Electronics Information: 20 questions, 9 minutes
  • Auto & Shop Information: 25 questions, 11 minutes
  • Mechanical Comprehension: 25 questions, 19 minutes
  • Assembling Objects: 25 questions, 15 minutes

Sections of the ASVAB Test

The ASVAB test measures a candidate’s academic ability and technical proficiency. The military’s general eligibility requirements are determined by four sections of the ASVAB.

Arithmetic Reasoning 

The Arithmetic Reasoning portion of the assessment tests your ability to solve arithmetic word problems.

“How many times will a tire rotate in half an hour if it rotates 552 times in one minute?” you may be asked. As a result, it is suggested that you research Math terms associated with each operation.

The ASVAB paper-and-pencil version contains 15 questions in 55 minutes, while the CAT-ASVAB has 15 questions in 55 minutes.

Assembling Objects 

The Assembling Objects section of the ASVAB contains 15 questions and is timed for 17 minutes. These questions test your ability to visualize objects in three dimensions and understand how objects are put together.

You will be shown a series of diagrams with various pieces of equipment or machines. Your task is to determine which piece goes where by selecting the corresponding letter on the answer sheet.

Auto and Shop Information 

This section tests your knowledge of automotive concepts, tools, and repair procedures.

You could get a question such as, “What connects the axle to the car’s frame, drive shaft, or exhaust pipe?” The shop’s questions are focused on fundamental woods and metals.

The first section of the CAT-ASVAB test, which focuses on automobile materials, consists of 10 questions in 7 minutes. The 25 question paper-and-pencil version allots 11 minutes to complete.

Electronics Information 

The Electronics Information section of the ASVAB measures your understanding of electrical and electronic concepts.

You could be asked a question such as, “What is the purpose of a resistor?” The test might also ask about schematics or wiring diagrams.

The CAT-ASVAB electronics portion has 25 questions in 10 minutes, while the paper-and-pencil version has 20 questions in 9 minutes.

Understanding these concepts is important for military positions that work with electronic equipment.

General Science 

The General Science section of the ASVAB tests your knowledge in science disciplines. Because science is so big and changing, concentrate on fundamental concepts. This sets you up for success when answering any question that comes your way.

You might be asked, “What are satellites used for?” The test will also cover topics such as Photosynthesis and Conservation of Energy.

This section consists of 15 questions in 10 minutes on the CAT-ASVAB, while the paper-and-pencil format has 25 questions in 11 minutes.

Mathematics Knowledge 

These questions test your knowledge regarding measurements, geometry, algebra, and other mathematical concepts.

For example, you might see a question such as, “If the length of a certain rectangle is increased by 4 inches and width is decreased by 2 inches, what is the new area?”

Looking at math symbols such as =, ≤, and √ might help you solve the problems faster while practicing any popular ASVAB math study guide on tackling the algebra and geometry questions on the test can improve your overall AFQT score.

The U.S. Military ASVAB test contains 15 questions in 23 minutes, while the paper-and-pencil version has 25 questions in 24 minutes.

Mechanical Comprehension 

This section of the ASVAB tests your comprehension of mechanical principles and operations.

You could be asked, “In a hydraulic system, how does water pump pressure affect the system’s ability to supply energy?” The math involved with this question is basic algebra. You may want to know how to calculate volume or force if you have forgotten the formulas.

The CAT-ASVAB Mechanical Comprehension test has 15 questions in 22 minutes, while the paper-and-pencil version has 25 questions in 19 minutes.

Paragraph Comprehension 

The Paragraph Comprehension section of the ASVAB tests your ability to read and understand written information. You will be given a passage that may or may not have multiple questions associated with it. Then you will answer several questions about the passage itself and fill in a corresponding bubble on your answer sheet.

This section has 10 questions in 27 minutes on the CAT-ASVAB and 15 questions in the paper-and-pencil version in 13 minutes.

Word Knowledge 

This is a vocabulary section. You will be given several definitions, and you must choose the correct word that corresponds with those definitions.

You may be asked, “What does the word ‘curt’ mean?” And several other words may be followed by two possible answers. Be sure to read carefully because some words have multiple definitions.

However, with a practice exam like this one, you can not only prepare for the ASVAB test but also in your career and personal life.

This section has 15 questions in 9 minutes on the CAT-ASVAB and 35 questions in 11 minutes on the paper-and-pencil version.

Getting a good score on the ASVAB can help you get into the military branch of your choice or qualify for a higher-paying military job. The best way to achieve a great score is to prepare with an ASVAB practice test and study guide.

How to Prepare for the ASVAB Test

Here are some basic steps to take:

Find a Comfortable, Quiet Area to Study

Studying for the ASVAB requires concentration. It can be almost impossible to pass if you’re distracted, even by noisy roommates. Not only that, but you’ll also feel better prepared if you’re in a comfortable place.

Choose the Right Study Materials

Many ASVAB study guides are on the market, and not all of them are created equal. Make sure your study materials are comprehensive by combining study guides with frequent testing using practice tests.  Practice tests are a proven method for absorbing information faster and longer.

Only Study What You Need to Know

The ASVAB is not a test of trivia, so only focus on the topics that will impact your score. For example, if you’re strong in math, you might opt to spend more time on other areas like paragraph comprehension or word knowledge.  Passing the test requires knowledge about many subjects, quick recall, and tough comprehension skills.

Gather Paper, Pens and Pencils, a Calculator and Other Tools

To ensure that you can take full advantage of the computerized version of the test, bring a calculator and plenty of writing materials.

Make a Study Schedule

The most essential thing is to make a timetable and stick to it. Some days, you may be tired and not focus as intensely as you would on other days, but if you keep doing so every day, the benefits will come in time.

You should begin by making a list of the subjects you’re competent at and those in which you might improve.

Focus on the AFQT sections

The Armed Forces Qualification Test (AFQT) score is a component of your overall ASVAB test scores. Your overall ASVAB score determines which Military Occupational Specialties (MOS) you qualify for, but your AFQT score is even more crucial.

Because your Armed Force Qualification Test score determines whether or not you’re eligible to enlist, that is the case. The minimum required AFQT score changes based on which branch you want to join.

Focus on Your Weaknesses

If you’re still unsure which test you should take, consider your strengths and weaknesses first.

You’ve probably been told that you should work on improving your vocabulary but have little time to do so. Now is a great chance to brush up on those skills with a few computer-adaptive practice questions online.

However, if you’re strong in math, for example, there’s no need to spend too much time on practice questions in that area.

Take ASVAB Practice Tests

Taking advantage of free ASVAB practice tests is a no brainer.  These computer-adaptive practice tests will help you improve your knowledge and skills in a specific topic area.

Taking these examinations offers prospective examinees several advantages, including the following:

  • You can time yourself.
  • You can learn which areas you need to work on.
  • You can familiarize yourself with the test format.
  • You can practice under timed conditions.
  • You can receive feedback on your results.

While taking the ASVAB may be frightening, practice tests can ensure that the experience goes better than expected.

Emulate the Testing Experience

If you can’t take the test in person, it is possible to simulate the testing environment. Practice ASVAB tests includes realistic simulated questions under similar conditions. These practice exams help you prepare for any situation and teach you time management skills.

The best method of studying usually depends on what works for each individual and what kind of material is available. However, all of the previously mentioned tips will help anyone studying for the ASVAB.

Don’t Stress Out. You Got This. Get in the Zone: The ASVAB is Just Another Test

The ASVAB is a test that everyone has to take at some point in their life. It tests your cognitive abilities, and it’s something you will have to pass if you want the career of your dreams or even just a job with better pay.

In this article, we’ve covered all the basics from the exam to how best to prepare for taking it- so arm yourself with knowledge and get ready!

You’ll be glad that you did when test day comes around. Good luck!

ASVAB Study Guides

  • Arithmetic reasoning refers to the process of solving math word problems – you know those questions you had in elementary, middle and high school that might involve two trains traveling at different speeds or determining how many different pieces of fruit Tommy brought home from the grocery store. Whether you enjoy these types of problems or dread them, there is a process you can use to make solving them quicker and easier. Your test administrator will provide you with scratch paper and a number two pencil for this portion of the ASVAB. Calculators are not allowed. If you are taking the pencil-and-paper test, you will 36 minutes to answer 30 questions and if you are taking the computer version, you will have 39 minutes to answer 16 questions.

    Open Study Guide
  • The Assembling Objects subtest of the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery is designed to measure your ability for visualizing spatial relationships. In this section of the ASVAB you will be required to view pieces of an object and then determine how those pieces fit together. If you’re asking yourself why this ability is important, the answer is because good spatial skills allow people to figure out maps and interpret graphs and technical drawings. For the Assembling Objects subtest you will 15 minutes to solve 16 problems on the CAT-ASVAB test and 16 minutes to solve 25 questions on the paper version of the ASVAB.

    Open Study Guide
  • The Auto and Shop Information subtest of the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery involves questions about automobile systems and functions/malfunctions and questions about common shop tools and fasteners and their uses. Your Auto and Shop Information subtest score is used to determine various job qualifications. It is not used in determining your Armed Forces Qualification Test score. On the ASVAB for the Auto and Shop Information subtest you will have 7 minutes to answer 11 auto-related questions and 6 minutes to answer 11 shop-related questions. On the paper version of the ASVAB, you will have 11 minutes to answer 25 questions, which are usually split between auto-related questions and shop-related questions.

    Open Study Guide
  • The ASVAB Electronics Information subtest covers electricity principles and electronic devices, including radios, televisions, magnets, motors, transistors and much, much more. For this subtest, you will have 8 minutes to answer 16 questions when you take the CAT-ASVAB. You will 9 minutes to answer 20 questions on the pencil and paper version of the ASVAB test. The Electronics Information subtest covers a variety of electrical-related subjects including: You will need to know major electrical concepts, including how to use conductors, currents, circuits and insulators, among other things. You’ll also need to know various types of conductors and insulators and how effective they are. And that’s not all, you’ll also need to know different ways electricity can be used, the different types of electrical current and more.

    Open Study Guide
  • The General Science subtest of the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery measures your knowledge of a variety of sciences, including: Earth science, biology, chemistry, health and more. The General Science subtest is NOT part of your Armed Forces Qualification Test score. However, it used to help determine qualification for a number of different military jobs. On this subtest, you will 25 questions to answer in 11 minutes on the paper version of the ASVAB and you will have 16 questions to answer in 8 minutes on the CAT-ASVAB.

    Open Study Guide
  • How were you at math in high school? This subtest of the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery is going to put you to the test. It is filled with questions covering basic high school math. Unfortunately, that means there is a lot for this test to cover, which means you’ll have to do a lot of jumping from one math concept to the next during the course of this subtest. One way to get ready for these rapid switches is to take our practice test – but we’ll talk more about that later. Right now, let’s take a closer look at the Mathematics Knowledge subtest. On the Mathematics Knowledge subtest you will have 24 minutes to answer 25 questions on the paper version of the ASVAB. On the CAT-ASVAB you will have 20 minutes to answer 16 questions. This subtest is counted as part of your Armed Forces Qualification Test score, so you will want to perform as well as you can. A good score on this subtest is also important to qualify for a number of military jobs.

    Open Study Guide
  • This subtest of the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery is designed to gauge your understanding of simple machines and mechanisms. On the paper version of the ASVAB, you will have 19 minutes to answer 25 questions and on the CAT-ASVAB you will have 20 minutes to answer 16 questions. This subtest is NOT counted as part of your Armed Forces Qualification Test score. It is used to determine your qualification for certain military jobs. The Mechanical Comprehension subtest requires a good ability to decipher machine diagrams. You’ll also need a familiarity with mechanical physics and you will need good math skills as you may be required to explain mechanical principles by solving equations based on formulas.

    Open Study Guide
  • Just as it sounds, in the Paragraph Comprehension subtest of the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery you will be reading paragraphs and then demonstrating your comprehension of those paragraphs by answering questions. This test is part of your Armed Forces Qualification Test score and is also used to determine qualification for a number of military jobs. In other words, this is a very important part of the ASVAB and you should strive to do as good as you can on it. On the paper-and-pencil version of the real ASVAB, you will need to answer 15 questions in 13 minutes when you come to this section. If you take the CAT-ASVAB, you will need to answer 11 questions in 22 minutes in this particular section.

    Open Study Guide
  • The Word Knowledge subtest of the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery measures your vocabulary knowledge. It is one of the four subtests, along with paragraph comprehension, arithmetic reasoning and mathematics knowledge, which are used to determine your Armed Forces Qualification Test score, which in turn determines your eligibility for military service. In addition, a good score on this section is required for a number of military jobs, everything from the obvious journalist position to the maybe not so obvious firefighter position. In other words, this is an important section of the ASVAB to do well and you should be sure to devote sufficient study time to preparing for this subtest. On the Word Knowledge subtest you will have 8 minutes to answer 16 questions if you take the CAT-ASVAB. If you take the paper ASVAB, you will have 11 minutes to answer 35 questions. On this test, you will be required to both differentiate words based on their spelling and to know what various words mean.

    Open Study Guide