asvab scores

ASVAB Scores: All You Need to Know

If you are planning to enlist in the U.S military, you first must understand the ASVAB scores you are required to join the desired branch. Let’s make it clear with our ASVAB scores article!

October 13, 2022

The ASVAB is made up of ten subtests. Each of these subtests is assigned a standardized score based on the performance of a national sample of test takers. For each section, approximately half of ASVAB test takers receive a standardized score of 50 or higher. Only about 20% of test takers achieve a score of 60 or higher. As a result, the average ASVAB score is 50.

What is the purpose of ASVAB scores?

ASVAB scores are used to determine candidates’ eligibility to enlist in the military (Navy, Marines, and Air Force) and to assign qualified candidates to appropriate job positions. The ASVAB test also provides secondary students with a career exploration program to assist them in understanding their aptitude and interests and planning their careers.

asvab scores

ASVAB Standard Scores

Each of the ASVAB’s nine sections is assigned a standard score. The following are the sections and their commonly used abbreviations:

  1. General Science (GS)

  2. Arithmetic Reasoning (AR)

  3. Word Knowledge (WK)

  4. Mathematics Knowledge (MK)

  5. Electronic information (EI)

  6. Paragraph Comprehension (PC)

  7. Auto and shop information (AS)

  8. Mechanical comprehension (MC)

  9. Assembling objects (AO)

You’re one step ahead if you remember the terms “mean” and “standard deviation” from statistics class. The mean is the average of a set of numbers for those who don’t know. Because the ASVAB subtests have a score range of one to 100, the mean is set to 50. This is based on a national sample of people aged 18 to 24.

A standard deviation is a measure of how far you are from the mean. The standard deviation for the ASVAB is set to 10. As a result, an Asvab score of 60 indicates that you are one standard deviation above the mean. An ASVAB score of 70 indicates that you are two standard deviations above the mean, and so on. So your ASVAB score is determined not by the number of problems you answered correctly, but by how many questions you responded to correctly in comparison to other test takers.

Your standard scores do not evaluate anything on their own, but they are utilized to calculate other scores that determine your military eligibility, branch, and rank.

To help you easily pass your ASVAB on the first attempt, we offer various ASVAB practice tests with the same format as the real test. Let’s take a look at it!

What is the minimum ASVAB score required for enlistment?

Enlistment is not based on ASVAB scores. When applicants are assigned to different jobs within the armed services, their ASVAB subtest scores are taken into account.

In contrast, AFQT scores will qualify you for enlistment. The military branches do not all require the same minimum AFQT score. None of them necessitate a score higher than the 50th percentile. The following are the minimum AFQT scores required for each branch:

*Please keep in mind that if you do not possess a high school diploma but have passed the GED test, the minimum score requirements could be higher. Check with your recruiter for more information on this specific branch.

The AFQT score is determined by adding the standard scores from four subject tests: arithmetic reasoning (AR), mathematics knowledge (MK), paragraph comprehension (PC), and word knowledge (WK). The scores are displayed as percentiles, which is the same as the standard scoring method. The score you see is determined by the number of questions you correctly answered in comparison to other test takers, and it ranges from one to 99.

What do ASVAB Composite Scores mean?

ASVAB composite scores, also known as line scores, help you figure out which military job is best for you, and some composite scores are required for specific jobs and branches. This is part of the classification process, which assigns new recruits to particular jobs and branches in which they might perform best. “Each service develops and validates its own set of composites based on the combination of subtests that are most highly correlated with on-the-job performance for clusters of occupations,” in accordance with the official ASVAB website.

asvab scores

To explain further, each branch of the military determines which skill sets are most important in that branch. To assess a candidate’s knowledge of these specific skills, specific subtests are selected. The standard scores of these selected subtests are combined using a computational formula. On your score report, you will obtain ten of these scores calculated using the computational formulas. The following are the composite score categories, their acronyms, and the formulas used to calculate them:

  • Clerical (CL) = word knowledge (WK) + arithmetic reasoning (AR) + paragraph comprehension (PC) + mathematics knowledge (MK)

  • Electronics (EL) = general science (GS) + mathematics knowledge (MK) + electronic information (EI) + arithmetic reasoning (AR)

  • Combat (CO) = word knowledge (WK) + auto and shop information (AS) + mechanical comprehension (MC) + paragraph comprehension (PC).

  • Field artillery (FA) = arithmetic reasoning (AR) + mechanical comprehension (MC) + mathematics knowledge (MK)

  • General maintenance (GM) = general science (GS) + mathematics knowledge + electronics information + auto and shop information (AS)

  • General technical (GT) = word knowledge (WK) (PC) + arithmetic reasoning (AR) + paragraph comprehension

  • Surveillance and communications (SC) = word knowledge (WK) + paragraph comprehension (PC) + auto and shop information (AS) + mechanical comprehension (MC) + arithmetic reasoning (AR)

  • Mechanical maintenance (MM) = auto and shop information (AS) + electronic information (EI) + mechanical comprehension (MC)

  • Operators and food (OF) = word knowledge (WK) + auto and shop information (AS) + mechanical comprehension (MC) + paragraph comprehension (PC)

  • Skilled technical (ST) = word knowledge (WK) + general science (GS) + mechanical comprehension (MC) + mathematics knowledge (MK) + paragraph comprehension (PC)

Understanding how your ASVAB scores are determined will allow you to be more strategic when learning, allowing you to concentrate on specific areas where you want to excel and feel especially prepared to attack the AFQT sections. Overall, understanding how your ASVAB scores relate to your potential enlistment, position, and rank will make the testing process less perplexing and more effective.


How are ASVAB scores used to assign military jobs?

The military job that is best suited to each eligible candidate is assigned through a process known as classification. Various composite scores are computed in this process by combining multiple ASVAB subtest scores. Only the subtests most relevant to their job positions are chosen by each department and combined. The composite scores are calculated differently for each service. The composite scores of the candidates are utilized to match them to the job(s).

What if you were unable to pass or score well on the ASVAB?

If an examinee does not pass or score well on the first attempt, they may retake the exam. The ASVAB, on the other hand, has a strict policy regarding retake duration. Candidates must wait a minimum of one month after the initial ASVAB test before retaking it. The wait for a second retest is one month, and the wait for a third retake of the test is 6 months.

What is a good ASVAB score for the military?

An AFQT score of 60 or higher would be considered a good ASVAB score for the Army. This would place you in the 60th percentile and qualify you for nearly every job available in the US Army.

Which branch of the military is easiest to get into?

With a lower minimum AFQT score requirement and a higher likelihood of waiving past minor offenses, the Army is considered the easiest military branch to join.

What branch requires the highest ASVAB score?

The Air Force requires the highest ASVAB score.

To become an enlisted member of the Air Force, you must pass the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB). In fact, the Air Force necessitates the highest admission score of any branch of the service. Air Force Specialty Code jobs are available in the Air Force (AFSC).