Marines are counted on to make sound decisions quickly, and are constantly placed in situations where their
mental acuity is tested. Because of this, those who seek our title must pass a series of timed, multidisciplinary tests
known as the ASVAB. This battery of tests will determine which Military Occupational Specialties (MOS's)
individuals can qualify for. Find out more about this test and how to ensure you'll be ready for it.
The Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) is a multiple-choice test, administered by the United States Military Entrance Processing Command, used to determine qualification for enlistment in the United States Marine Corps and other armed forces. It is typically offered to American high school students when they are in the 10th, 11th and 12th grade, though anyone eligible for enlistment may take it. There has never been a requirement that a test-taker with a qualifying score enlist in the military, and the test may simply determine personal aptitude for a particular career.
WHAT TO EXPECT
The United States Marine Corps has high standards for enlistment. An important part of the Marine Recruiter's job is to screen applicants to ensure they measure up. Once the recruiter has determined that you are qualified for further processing, you will be scheduled to take the ASVAB.
WHERE TO TAKE THE ASVAB
ASVAB testing for applicants is conducted at Military Entrance Processing Stations, known as MEPS. The MEPS are a Department of Defense joint-service organization staffed with military and civilian professionals. There are 65 MEPS located across the U.S. and Puerto Rico. Your Marine Recruiter will know where your nearest MEPS is located.
If you do not live near a MEPS, the ASVAB can be administered at a satellite location called a Military Entrance Test (MET) site. MET sites are often located in Federal government office buildings, National Guard armories or Reserve centers. You'll need to bring valid identification to be admitted into the ASVAB testing room. Don't be late—you'll be turned away and required to reschedule if you are. Your recruiter may give you a ride to and from the session, but he/she is not permitted in the testing room.
The ASVAB is a multiple disciplinary battery that measures developed abilities and helps predict future academic and occupational success in the Marine Corps. The following list shows the breakdown of ASVAB questions:
General Science – 25 questions
Arithmetic Reasoning – 30 questions
Word Knowledge – 35 questions
Paragraph Comprehension – 15 questions
Mathematics Knowledge – 25 questions
Electronic Information – 20 questions
Auto and Shop Information – 25 questions
Mechanical Comprehension – 25 questions
Assembling Objects – 25 questions
HOW TO PREPARE
The ASVAB Testing Program does not endorse any particular method of test preparation beyond recommending that examinees take a solid core of courses in mathematics, English and science in high school and/or college. Such academic preparation will help with performance on the Arithmetic Reasoning, Mathematics Knowledge, Paragraph Comprehension, Word Knowledge and General Science subtests. Taking technical courses will also help with performance on the Auto Information, Shop Information, Electronics Information and Mechanical Comprehension subtests.
The following are general tips to help you to perform your best on the ASVAB.
- Prepare well in advance of the day of the test.
- Familiarize yourself with the contents of the ASVAB. Take sample questions online and review content areas in which you need to freshen up your skills.
- Find out whether you will be taking the paper and pencil ASVAB, or the CAT-ASVAB, as optimal test-taking strategies differ between the two versions.
- Get plenty of rest the night before the test.