By Rod Powers

In the stem of each of the following ASVAB Word Knowledge practice questions, you see an underlined word. Select the choice that best answers the question in relation to the underlined word.

Pay attention to the wording of each question. Some questions ask you to select the choice closest in meaning to the underlined word. Some questions may ask you to select the word most opposite in meaning. On other questions, you see the underlined word used in a sentence. In that case, your task is to select the choice most similar in meaning to the underlined word as it is used in the context of the sentence.

Sample questions

Answer these questions to the best of your ability.

  1. Acclaim most nearly means
    • A. enthusiastic approval.
    • B. religion.
    • C. help.
    • D. program.
  2. The college student met with the bursar to discuss tuition payment options.

    • A. planner
    • B. treasurer
    • C. politician
    • D. ghost
  3. Estrange most nearly means
    • A. sharp.
    • B. small.
    • C. alienate.
    • D. shiny.
  4. Momentous most nearly means
    • A. significant.
    • B. small.
    • C. reality.
    • D. postpone.
  5. The mother chastised her child.
    • A. comforted
    • B. carried
    • C. ectured
    • D. supervised
  6. Obtrude most nearly means
    • A. condition.
    • B. absorb.
    • C. prepare.
    • D. impose.
  7. We often wondered why Daniel lived in such an opulent apartment.
    • A. run-down
    • B. lavish
    • C. far away
    • D. hideous
  8. Now that you’ve read through it once, it’s time to recapitulate the Word Knowledge information.
    • A. discuss
    • B. summarize
    • C. test
    • D. reread
  9. Clemency most nearly means
    • A. mercy.
    • B. force.
    • C. imprisonment.
    • D. compliment.
  10. This year the Paris fashion industry has decided to eschew short skirts and high heels.
    • A. favor
    • B. manufacture
    • C. shun
    • D. sell

Answers and Explanations

Use this answer key to score the Word Knowledge practice questions.

  1. B. Used as a noun, acclaim means a shout of approval, so the answer is Choice (A).
  2. B. Bursar is similar to the word reimburse. The question gives context clues about tuition payment, and that should give you enough clues to select the correct answer, Choice (B).
  3. C. Estrange means to alienate, Choice (C). Note that estrange is a verb, and the only answer choice that’s also a verb is Choice (C); the others are adjectives.
  4. A. Momentous is an adjective and means very significant, Choice (A).
  5. C. Chastised means disciplined or punished, so Choice (C) is the most correct choice. Choices (A), (B), and (D) are unrelated.
  6. D.The correct answer is Choice (D). Obtrude means to intrude or to impose oneself on another. The other choices are unrelated.
  7. B. Opulent is an adjective that means wealthy, rich, or affluent. Choice (B) is the answer closest in meaning. The other choices are unrelated or opposite of the meaning.
  8. B. Recapitulate is a verb that means to summarize. It’s also the longer version of the word recap. The correct answer is Choice (B). Choice (A) is somewhat close, but Choice (B) is the closest in meaning.
  9. A. Clemency means forgiveness or leniency in punishing a person. Choice (A) is the correct answer. The other choices are unrelated.
  10. C. Eschew is a verb that means to avoid or keep away from. Choice (C) is the correct answer, and the other answers are unrelated.