A ratio is a statement that shows how two numbers compare. When you encounter a ratio question on the Mathematics Knowledge subtest on the ASVAB, you may not recognize it at first. That's because you can express a ratio in one of three ways:


Practice questions

  1. Express the ratio of women to men as a fraction and simplify: There are 15 women and 20 men in the group.


  2. The ratio of 1.5 to 32 equals the ratio of 1/5 to x. Solve for x.

    A. 0.4 B. 0.45 C. 0.39 D. 0.43

Answers and explanations

  1. The correct answer is Choice (B).

    To express the ratio as a fraction, you'd write:


    Using what you know of fractions, simplify


    Although Choices (A), (C), and (D) express the same ratio in different numbers, they're incorrect because the question asks you to simplify the fraction. Many of the questions on the ASVAB require you to pay attention to detail, so make sure you read before you answer!

  2. The correct answer is Choice (D).

    It's easiest to solve problems when you're working with like terms. Convert 1/5 into 0.2 so you're not working with fractions.

    Write an equation to find x:



    1.5x = 0.64

    Divide both sides of the equation to isolate x:


About This Article

This article is from the book:

About the book author:

Angie Papple Johnston joined the U.S. Army in 2006 as a Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear specialist, ready to tackle chemical weapons in a Level- A HAZMAT suit. She's currently the CBRN noncommissioned officer-in-charge of an aviation battalion in Washington, D.C.

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