Posted by: Jacqui Murray | January 30, 2015

ASVAB or USNA? What Works for you

BCT_tn_00161_JPGIf you’re graduating from high school and you don’t want to join the military via a Service Academy, you can enlist. To do that, you must take the ASVAB– the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB). It’s multiple choice administered by United States Military Entrance Processing Command prior to enlistment. Areas of competence include:

  • Word Knowledge (WK)
  • Arithmetic Reasoning (AR)
  • Mechanical Comprehension (MC)
  • Shop Information (SI)
  • Automotive Information (AI)
  • Electronics Information (EI)
  • Mathematics Knowledge (MK)
  • General Science (GS)
  • Paragraph Comprehension (PC)
  • Assembling Objects (AO)
  • Verbal Expression (VE)

It’s scored as a hundred points, 50 representing where 50% of applicants end up. Depending upon which service you are interested in, minimal scores differ:

  • Air Force/Air National Guard 36
  • Coast Guard (AFQT) 45
  • Navy (AFQT) 35
  • Marines (AFQT) 32
  • Army (AFQT) 31
  • Army National Guard (AFQT) 31

Here are a few practice questions:

If Lynn can type a page in p minutes, what piece of the page can she do in 5 minutes?American Heroes II

A. 5/p
B. p – 5
C. p + 5
D. p/5
E. 1- p + 5

Everyone in the bank-including the manager and the tellers, ran to the door when the fire alarm rang.

A. tellers, ran
B. tellers:ran
C. tellers, had run
D. tellers-ran
E. tellers’ ran

The prince abdicated the crown and returned to his castle.
Abdicated means

A. Gave up
B. Sold
C. Reinvested into
D. Auctioned has a multi-part review of the test, with tips and strategies and what it means to your military future:

The ASVAB is a timed multi-aptitude test, which is given at over 14,000 schools and Military Entrance Processing Stations (MEPS) nationwide and is developed and maintained by the Department of Defense.

Start now by taking our practice ASVAB tests. These tests will give you an idea of how you’ll score, and identify areas that need improvement. Then use our suggested resources and ASVAB study guides to learn how to prepare for the ASVAB test.

How important is the ASVAB test?

Your scores in four critical areas — Arithmetic Reasoning, Word Knowledge, Paragraph Comprehension and Mathematics Knowledge (see below) — count towards your Armed Forces Qualifying Test (AFQT) score. The AFQT score determines whether you’re qualified to enlist in the U.S. military.

Your scores in the other areas of the ASVAB will determine how qualified you are for certain military occupational specialties and Enlistment Bonuses. A high score will improve your chances of getting the specialty/job and signing bonus you want.

Scoring high on the ASVAB will require study and concentration. Don’t skimp on preparing for this test. It’s your future. Get the most out of it.

Want more information? Here are a few more articles that might interest you:

Enlisting isn’t Easy Any More

Military a Good Option for College Grads

Follow me.

Jacqui Murray is the editor of a technology curriculum for K-fifth grade and author of two technology training books for middle school. She wrote Building a Midshipman, the story of her daughter’s journey from high school to United States Naval Academy midshipman. She is webmaster for five blogs, an Amazon Vine Voice book reviewer, a tech columnist for Examiner.comEditorial Review Board member for ISTE’s Journal for Computing TeachersIMS tech expert, and a weekly contributor to Write AnythingCurrently, she’s editing a thriller for her agent that should be out to publishers this summer. Contact Jacqui at her writing office or her tech lab, Ask a Tech Teacher.


  1. Hi I’m David, I’ve sent you messages in the past and I just wanted to tell you that I finally got your book. I was so excited when it came in. I love it, I got the paperback verson and it’s exactly like a workbook. I have really helped me keep track of my priorities.My absolute dream is to attend the academy and this book with no doubt will help me get there. Thanks to you I finally have some guidance. I just really wanted to thank you for such a great guide!
    P.S.- I really like your weekly emails, they give me little bursts of inspiration each week!


    • Hi David–sorry I didn’t respond earlier. I’m glad to hear your story. You have a wonderful goal and one that will be worth all the hours, efforts, and time you put into accomplishing it. The most important traits in this journey you’ve undertaken is tenacity and giving 110%. Never give up.


      • Thank you so much!


  2. […] the ASVAB (read more about that here), enlist, and be selected to become an officer through the Seaman to Admirals program (read more […]


  3. […] If you're graduating from high school and you don't want to join the military via a Service Academy, you can enlist. To do that, you must take the ASVAB– the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Bat…  […]


What do you think? Leave a comment and I'll reply.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


%d bloggers like this: