The ASVAB National Guard Test

ASVAB and National Guard Services

The Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) was developed to select personnel to serve the military services. An important section of the armed forces is the National Guard, which is further segregated into:

  • Army National Guard
  • Air Force National Guard

Purpose of ASVAB Tests

A National Guard responds to emergencies and crisis that are primarily domestic as well as international; for example, during a hurricane or a coastal oil spill. Thus, the National Guard Services form the backbone of the Armed Forces in the form of allied forces at home or abroad. There are many requirements to pursue a career as a National Guard; basic requirements such as age, citizenship, medical, physical, and moral requirements. Then there are others, such as education and most importantly, aptitude. The aptitude test measures your basic learning along with the Military Occupational Specialty (MOS) skills. The National Guard examination specifically evaluates your proficiency across domains for two reasons:

  • To enlist you as a candidate for the services
  • To absorb you into the services depending on your aptitude or the nature of job

What is the ASVAB test for National Guard?

The aptitude test for a National Guard is the ASVAB test. This is a screening test to determine your eligibility to enlist as a soldier with the services. It is a preliminary test that is administered across Military Entrance Test Sites (METS) or at Military Entrance Processing Stations (MEPS). It is a timed test that requires you to think quickly and correctly.


This battery of tests assesses the skills of an aspirant in various domains: Math, Verbal, Science, Technical, and Spatial. The sections of the National Guard test are listed in the table below.

MATH Arithmetic Reasoning (AR)
Mathematics Knowledge (MK)
VERBAL Passage Comprehension (PC)
Word Knowledge (WK)
Electric Information (EI)
General Science (GS)
Mechanical Comprehension (MC)
Shop Information (SI)
SPATIAL Assembling Objects (AO)

The following tables list the sections that are added to derive the required score for a particular division.

Air National Guard: Minimum Score: AFQT 36

Army National Guard: Minimum Score: AFQT 31

Division Combined Scores derived from
Electrical Arithmetic Reasoning + Electronics Information + Mathematics Knowledge + General Science
General Arithmetic Reasoning + Verbal Expression (PC + WK)
Mechanical General Science + Mechanical Comprehension (2 * Automotive and Shop Information)
Division Combined Scores
Clerical Arithmetic Reasoning + Mathematics Knowledge + Verbal Expression
Combat Operations Automotive and Shop Information + Mechanical Comprehension + Verbal Expression
Electronics Arithmetic Reasoning + Electronics Information + General Science + Mathematics Knowledge
Field Artillery Arithmetic Reasoning + Mechanical Comprehension + Mathematics Knowledge
General Maintenance Automotive and Shop Information + Electronics Information + General Science + Mathematics Knowledge
General Technical Arithmetic Reasoning + Verbal Expression
Mechanical Maintenance Electronics Information + Mechanical Comprehension + Electronics Information
Operators and Food Automotive and Shop Information + Mechanical Comprehension + Verbal Expression
Surveillance and Communications Arithmetic Reasoning + Automotive and Shop Information + Mechanical Comprehension + Verbal Expression
Skilled Technical General Science + Mechanical Comprehension + Mathematics Knowledge + Verbal Expression


The duration of the test varies and depends on whether you are taking the Paper-and-Pencil based test (also known as the P&P-ASVAB) or the computerized test (known as the CAT-ASVAB). The P&P-ASVAB lasts for 149 minutes or 2 hours and 48 minutes, whereas the CAT-ASVAB lasts for 154 minutes or 2 hours and 57 minutes. On average, a candidate can complete the CAT-ASVAB in an hour and a half, whereas a candidate can complete the P&P-ASVAB in three hours.

Question Types

The number of questions in the P&P-ASVAB and the CAT-ASVAB differ. The computerized version of the test is purely an adaptive test, which means that the next question is based on your response to the previous question. Hence, it is also a way to measure your ability. However, unlike the paper based version, you cannot review or modify an answer after you have submitted it.

The ASVAB is a good way to find out about your strengths. This is essential in order to find a career or job in the National Guard that you will be good at and enjoy at the same time. Apart from being a soldier, the National Guard division branches out to several other sub-divisions, such as:

  • Basic Branch Officers
    • Combat Arms, such as Armour, Field Artillery, and Infantry
    • Combat Support, such as Military Intelligence, Military Police, and Signal
    • Combat Service Support, such as Finance, Quartermaster, and Transportation
  • Specialty Officers
    • Chaplain
    • Judge Advocate General
    • Medical Professional
  • Warrant Officers, who are subject matter experts (SMEs) in technical or tactical training

Therefore, the sections that are tested in the entire examination determine your suitability for a role in the National Guard. However, the GT score plays an important role in determining your suitability. A line score of 110 in GT will qualify you to enlist for the National Guard.
The sections belonging to the Math domain assess your understanding of mathematics principles studied at school level and how you apply them to problems as well as your reasoning capability of arithmetic problems.

The Verbal domain measures your knowledge of words and their usage, especially synonyms, wherein you need to select the appropriate word. Although this section tests your language skills, it is useful for almost every sub-test of the examination, especially the Science and Technology domains. The Verbal domain also includes Passage Comprehension with multiple choices wherein you need to understand the given passage and select the correct answer.
The Science or Technical domain includes questions on basic science (both physical and biological) and specialized topics, such as electronics, electricity, automobile technology, mechanics, and physics.

The Shop Information (SI) domain is part of the CAT-ASVAB, and tests your knowledge of tools and understanding of shop practices.


This test has been designed after years of research and aims to find out the strong areas of the candidate. Other than sifting the best candidates, it is a test that gauges your skills so that you can find a job you are good at. Hence, it is important that you practice, focus on your strengths, and improve on your weaknesses in order to achieve a high score in this test to enlist as a National Guard.