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Breakdown of the ASVAB Subtests

The computerized format of the ASVAB (CAT-ASVAB) contains ten separately timed subtests, with the Auto & Shop Information subtest split in two. (Also, one small subtest is geared to Coding Speed for a few Navy jobs; this subtest isn’t included in the practice tests because very few people test for these jobs.)

The paper format of the test has nine subtests. The two formats differ in the number of questions in each subtest and the amount of time you have for each one. The following table outlines the ASVAB subtests in the order that you take them in the enlistment (computerized or paper) and student (paper only) versions of the test.

Subtest Questions/Time (CAT-ASVAB) Questions/Time (Paper Version) Content
General Science (GS) 16 questions, 8 minutes 25 questions, 11 minutes General principles of biological and physical sciences
Arithmetic Reasoning (AR) 16 questions, 39 minutes 30 questions, 36 minutes Simple word problems that require simple calculations
Word Knowledge (WK) 16 questions, 8 minutes 35 questions, 11 minutes Correct meaning of a word; occasionally antonyms (words with opposite meanings)
Paragraph Comprehension (PC) 11 questions, 22 minutes 15 questions, 13 minutes Questions based on several paragraphs (usually a few hundred words) that you read
Mathematics Knowledge (MK) 16 questions, 20 minutes 25 questions, 24 minutes High school math, including algebra and geometry
Electronics Information (EI) 16 questions, 8 minutes 20 questions, 9 minutes Electrical principles, basic electronic circuitry, and electronic terminology
Auto & Shop Information (AS) 11 Auto Information questions, 7 minutes; 11 Shop Information questions, 6 minutes 25 questions, 11 minutes Knowledge of automobiles, shop terminology, and tool use
Mechanical Comprehension (MC) 16 questions, 20 minutes 25 questions, 19 minutes Basic mechanical and physical principles
Assembling Objects (AO) 16 questions, 15 minutes 25 questions, 15 minutes* Spatial orientation

*The Assembling Objects subtest isn’t part of the student version of the test.

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