How to Prepare for the ASVAB for the Air Force

Posted by American Uniform Sales on Jul 3rd 2024

A career in the Air Force can be fulfilling and an excellent choice for your future, but there are steps you have to take before you can become an Airmen. For example, you’ll need to speak with a recruiter, undergo a medical exam, and pass a background check.

One of the other steps you’ll need to complete is the ASVAB, which is used to determine your eligibility for each branch and your aptitude for specific occupations in the military. Check out our guide to the ASVAB and what tips we have for preparing for the test.

What Is the ASVAB?

The ASVAB is the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery aptitude test and is designed to predict the occupational success of potential recruits in the military, including the Air Force. You will have to take the ASVAB before you can complete the enlistment process so your recruiter can determine if you’re eligible for the Air Force and what jobs would be the right fit for you.

The ASVAB tests in different areas, such as reading comprehension, general science, mechanical comprehension, arithmetic, and other subjects. The ASVAB scores individual subtest, and your total score is what’s used to determine eligibility.

ASVAB Score Requirements for the Air Force

The Air Force requires enlistees to score a minimum of 31 on the ASVAB if they have a high school degree. If you have a GED, you will need to score at least 50. Keep in mind that meeting the minimum score won’t guarantee you a place in the Air Force and there are additional criteria that may need to be met.

Some jobs will also have higher minimum requirements, so it’s important to talk to your recruiter about the different job opportunities in the Air Force and what you might want to do. Your recruiter can help you determine what score you would need to meet the requirements for your desired occupation.

Tips for Preparing for the ASVAB

If you’re considering a career in the Air Force, it’s important to prepare in advance for the ASVAB so you have a better chance at getting the job you want. Consider using the tips below so you’re adequately prepared for the test:

1. Start Getting Familiar With the Test Content

One of the first things you should do is look up the subjects and content you’ll be tested on while taking the ASVAB. The ASVAB consists of four primary testing areas: science, math, verbal, and spatial. Start looking into the content and subtests to determine what you need to study and practice so you can score within the right range for the career you want.

2. Create an Effective Study Schedule

It’s critical to be consistent with your studying so you retain what you’ve learned, making it easier to recall on test day. Ideally, you’ll want to study around five days a week for a minimum of 30 to 45 minutes a day. Make sure you stay focused during your study sessions so they’re as effective as possible, which means limiting distractions and finding a study method that works for you. While you may not feel like studying some days, it’s important to stay consistent so you get the best performance possible when you show up for the day of the test.

3. Look Online for Practice ASVABs and Focus on Your Weaknesses

If you want to try out the test before actually taking the real version, you can look online for practice tests to see where you’re at. Taking these practice exams is a great way to monitor your progress and helps you clearly see what areas you need to work on. Use these tests as a way to monitor and alter your study habits as needed to improve on your weaknesses.

4. Get Familiar With What You Can Expect on Test Day

If you familiarize yourself with what goes down on test day, you’ll feel more comfortable and prepared on the day of your test.

The first thing you’ll do is head to your closest Military Entrance Test (MET) or Military Entrance Processing Station (MEPS). Before you leave the house, make sure you have a valid ID since you will need to present it when you arrive.

Make sure you know what time the test starts and show up early. If you show up late, you won’t be allowed to take the ASVAB and will need to reschedule, which can delay your enlistment process. Once you get into the testing room, you’ll be with other potential recruits who are also taking the ASVAB. Keep in mind that you won’t be able to bring any items in with you, like water bottles, writing utensils, or a calculator so leave these at home or in your vehicle.

The version of the test you’re taking will determine how long it will take. If you’re using traditional pencil and paper, you can expect the test to last somewhere around three hours, while the computer-based version takes about 1.5 hours.

How to Prepare the Day Before the Test

Like any test you take, it’s important to take care of yourself in the days leading up to the test, particularly the day before. With the proper care, you can show up feeling more energized and focused for the ASVAB. Some of the best things to do leading up to the test include:

Sleep: You should get a good night’s sleep every night for your general health, but especially the night before the ASVAB. Getting enough sleep will make it easier to focus on the test and you won’t need to worry about fatigue sapping your energy and brain power. Try to fall asleep at least eight hours before you need to wake up so you’re energized and ready to go in the morning.

Eat: Your body and mind need fuel to operate during the day, so it’s important to eat enough and eat well in the days leading up to the ASVAB. The night before and the morning of the test, eat a well-balanced meal that offers sustained energy with food like eggs, peanut butter, kale, or broccoli.

Hydrate: Water is just as important as food when it comes to your physical and mental function. Dehydration can affect your mind’s ability to think quickly and clearly, and you want to be operating at your best on test day. Try to drink at least eight to ten glasses a day before the test, or more if you’re physically active. Make sure you drink water before you get to the test so you’re starting the morning on the right foot.

Relax: You don’t want to spend the night before trying to cram or getting stressed about taking the test since it can hurt your concentration and overall performance. You’ve done all the studying you can in advance, and should take the day before the test to relax so you’re more refreshed in the morning. Choose an activity that doesn’t cause too much mental strain, such as meditation, yoga, spending time with friends, or reading a book.

Is it Possible to Retake the ASVAB?

As much as you prepare, you may not get your desired score the first time you take the ASVAB. However, that doesn’t mean that you can’t study more and try again. If you score below the minimum requirements or not as high as you needed for a specific job you want, you can always retest.

However, it’s important to remember that you will need to wait a month after your initial test date to take the test a second time. If you still don’t reach a score as high as you want, you can retest again but will need to wait six months.

Once you take the test and get your desired score, the results will only be valid for two years. If you wait too long to enlist, you will have to retake the ASVAB again.

Let AUSI Support You During Your Career in the Air Force

Once you become an Airman, you will need to be in uniform more often than not. American Uniform Sales can equip you with AFI-compliant OCPs, footwear, accouterments, and gear. We can help you replace old and worn-out pieces or add extra uniform pairs to your closet for convenience. When you get uniforms from us, you can trust that they’ll meet your quality standards and Air Force regulations. You can get started today by checking out our selection, or reach out to us with any of your questions. 

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