# 2022 / 2023 ASVAB For Dummies

**Published: **03-22-2022

**Lock down the score you need to get the job you want! **

The bestselling *ASVAB For Dummies *is back with an updated and expanded annual edition. Joining the military? Want to maximize your score and your job flexibility? Dummies to the rescue! With *2022/2023 ASVAB For Dummies*, you’ve got access to an insane amount of test prep and study material, including 7 online practice tests, flashcards, hundreds of practice questions right in the book, and a lot more. Military recruiters trust the #1 Bestselling ASVAB study guide on the market to help their prospective enlistees score high on the test.

Check out these insider tips and tricks for test-day-success from an expert author, and practice with example problems until you feel confident. Learn at your own pace. It’s all possible. Next stop: basic training.

- Learn what the ASVAB is all about, including all 10 test sections
- Practice with 7 online practice tests and countless more questions
- Identify the score you need to get the job you want—then get that score
- Work through at your own pace and emphasize the areas you need

*ASVAB For Dummies* is a reliable study guide with proven results. You don’t need anything else. Get studying, recruit!

## Articles From 2022 / 2023 ASVAB For Dummies

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Cheat Sheet / Updated 04-14-2022

As any professional military commander will tell you, knowing your enemy is the first step in winning a battle. After all, how can you expect to pass the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) if you don’t know what’s on the test? Here are some test-taking tips and key info about ASVAB test formats and ASVAB subtests to help you score well on the ASVAB, get into the service of your choice, and qualify for your dream job.

View Cheat SheetArticle / Updated 04-23-2020

You will want to have a basic understanding of forces for the ASVAB. By applying force (a push or pull), you can open the door or close it, speed it up (slam it) or slow it down (catch it before it slams), or make it change direction (push it shut when the wind blows it open). In physics, applying force allows changes in the velocity (the speed and direction) of an object. A change in velocity is known as acceleration. Here’s the mathematical formula to determine force: Force = Mass x Acceleration Martial artists use this concept all the time. Although a larger fighter may have more size (mass), a smaller fighter can usually speed up more quickly (have more acceleration), possibly resulting in both fighters’ applying the same amount of force. This concept is why 110-pound martial artists can break boards and bricks just as well as 200-pound martial artists. The basics of action and reaction Sir Isaac Newton sure was one of the sharpest crayons in the box. His third law of motion states that for every action (force) in nature, there’s an equal and opposite reaction. In other words, if object A exerts a force on object B, then object B also exerts an equal and opposite force on object A. Notice that the forces are exerted on different objects. As you sit in your chair, your body exerts a downward force on the chair, and the chair exerts an upward force on your body. There are two forces resulting from this interaction: a force on the chair and a force on your body. These two forces are called action and reaction forces. This force can also be used to describe how a motorboat moves through the water. As the propellers turn, they push the water behind the boat (action). The water reacts by pushing the boat forward (reaction). Equilibrium: Finding a balance Forces are vector quantities. That means they have both a magnitude (size) and a direction associated with them. Forces applied in the same direction as other forces increase the total force, and forces that move in opposite directions reduce the total force. In general, an object can be acted on by several different forces at any one time. A very basic concept when dealing with forces is the idea of equilibrium or balance. When two or more forces interact so that their combination cancels the other(s) out, a state of equilibrium occurs. In this state, the velocity of an object doesn’t change. The forces are considered to be balanced if the rightward forces are balanced by the leftward forces and the upward forces are balanced by the downward forces. If an object is at rest and is in a state of equilibrium, then it’s at static equilibrium. Static means being stationary or at rest. For example, a glass of water sitting on a table is at static equilibrium. The table exerts an upward force on the glass to counteract the force of gravity. Under pressure: Spreading out the force Pressure is a measurement of force over an area. Pressure is usually measured in pounds per square inch (psi). The formula for deriving pressure is If 50 pounds of force is exerted on 10 square inches of surface, the amount of pressure is 5 pounds per square inch (5 = 50 / 10). Consider this: If you’re sleeping in bed, the amount of pressure being exerted per square inch is much less than when you’re standing on your feet. The surface area of the bottoms of your feet (supporting all that weight) is much less than the surface area of all your body parts that touch the mattress. Ever wonder how a person can lie on a bed of nails? The answer involves elementary physics. His or her body rests evenly on hundreds of nails; therefore, no individual nail exerts a great amount of pressure against the skin. Have you ever seen someone stand on a bed of nails? It’s unlikely because more pressure is on the feet, and the nails would puncture the feet. A barometer is a gauge that measures atmospheric pressure. Normal atmospheric pressure is 14.7 psi. A change in air pressure means the weather is about to change. Kinds of forces Here are some of the forces that act on objects: Friction: Resistance to the motion of two objects or surfaces that touch Gravity: The physical property that draws objects toward the center of Earth (and other objects that have mass) Magnetism: The property of attracting iron or steel Recoil: The property of kicking back when released Static electricity: The production of stationary electrical charges, often the result of friction Friction: Resisting the urge to move When one surface (such as a floor) resists the movement of another surface (the bottom of a piano), the result is frictional resistance. (This friction isn’t like resisting orders to cut the grass. That type of resistance may cause friction between you and your dad, but I’m talking about a different kind of resistance here.) In order to perform work — that is, to get an object to move in the direction you’re pushing or pulling — sometimes you have to overcome friction by applying more force. For example, when you’re moving a piano across a smooth, vinyl floor, little friction is produced, so the amount of force required to push the piano comes from the piano’s weight and the very minor friction produced by the smooth floor. But when you’re moving a piano across a carpeted floor, more friction is produced, so you have to push harder to move the same piano the same distance. Rolling friction (like the friction that occurs when you roll a wheel along the pavement) is always less than sliding friction (which occurs when you shove a piano along the floor). If you put wheels on a piano, it’s much easier to push! You can decrease friction by using a lubricant. Oil, grease, and similar materials reduce friction between two surfaces. So theoretically, if you oil the bottom of a piano, it’s easier to move! (Oiling the bottom of your piano isn’t recommended — for reasons involving the appearance of your floor and piano.) Gravity: What goes up must come down Sir Isaac Newton invented gravity in 1687 when he failed to pay attention while sitting under a tree and got bonked on the noggin by an apple. Before that, gravity didn’t exist, and everyone just floated around. Okay, I’m kidding. Isaac Newton didn’t invent gravity. But the famous mathematician was the first to study gravity seriously, and he came up with the theory (now a scientific law) of how gravity works. Newton’s law of universal gravitation states that every object in the universe attracts every other object in the universe. Earth produces gravity, and so do the sun, other planets, your car, your house, and your body. The amount (force) of the attraction depends on the following: Mass: The force of gravity depends on the mass of (amount of matter in) the object. If you’re sitting in front of your television, you may be surprised to know that the television set is attracting you. However, because the mass of the TV is so small compared to the mass of Earth, you don’t notice the physical “pull” toward the television set. Note that the force of gravity acting on an object is equal to the weight of the object. Of course, other planets have lesser or greater masses than Earth, so the weight of objects on those planets will be different. Distance: Newton’s law also says that the greater the distance is between two objects, the less the objects will attract each other. In other words, the farther away an object is from Earth (or any large body), the less it will weigh. If you stand at the top of a high mountain, you will weigh less than you will at sea level. Don’t get too excited about this weight-loss technique. Gravitational pull isn’t the next big diet craze. The difference is incredibly small. Sorry! For an object to really lose weight, it must be far away from Earth (or any other large body). When an object is far enough away from these bodies that it experiences practically no gravitational pull from them, it’s said to experience weightlessness — just like the astronauts you see on TV. Gravity pulls objects downward toward the center of Earth, so the old saying “what goes up must come down” is appropriate when discussing gravity. If you fire a bullet straight up into the air, it will travel (overcoming the force of gravity) until it reaches its farthest or highest point, and then it will fall. Applying force to two ends: Tension Tension force is the force transmitted through a rope, string, or wire when force is applied to both ends. The force is the amount of tension directed along the rope, string, or wire and pulls equally on the objects at both ends. Tension force is usually measured in either pounds-force or newtons (N); 4.45 newtons equal 1 pound-force. Elastic recoil: The trampoline of physics Liquids and gases don’t have a specific shape, but solid matter does. Solids are perfectly happy with the way they look and resist changes in shape. If you exert a force on a solid shape, it responds by exerting a force in the opposite direction. This force is called elastic recoil. Take a look at the following figure. The cat is standing on a board suspended on two blocks. While the board bends, the cat can feel the force of the board trying to regain its original shape. If the cat steps off the board, the board will spring back to its normal state.

View ArticleArticle / Updated 04-23-2020

On the Mechanical Comprehension subtest of the ASVAB test, you need to know the definition of work and understand the basics of potential and kinetic energy and resistance. Mechanically speaking, work happens when a force (usually measured in pounds) moving over a measurable distance (usually measured in feet) overcomes a resistance. In the United States, the unit of measure for work is often called a foot-pound. (Note: The rest of the world uses the newton-meter, or joule.) One foot-pound of work occurs when a 1-pound weight is lifted to a height of 1 foot. You can represent this concept in equation form: Work = Force × Distance Work is different from effort; work is the result of effort. You can think of effort as being force and of work as being what you produce with that force. Working out the difference between potential and kinetic energy Energy is the capacity to do work. Every object in the universe has energy, and it’s either potential or kinetic. Potential energy is stored energy — energy that’s not doing anything at the moment but that’s in the object by virtue of its position in a field. If a book is resting in your hands, the book itself is holding potential energy. If you raise the book over your head, you’re increasing its potential energy (thanks to the Earth’s gravitational pull). When you accidentally drop it, all its potential energy becomes kinetic energy, or energy in motion. When the book hits the ground, its energy becomes potential again. Potential energy can’t be transferred between objects. The more massive an object is, the more potential and kinetic energy it has (so a bowling ball contains more energy than a basketball does). Both these forms of energy are measured in joules. Overcoming resistance The resistance that the work overcomes isn’t the same thing as the weight of the object. (If you’ve ever tried to put your freaked-out cat in a cat carrier to go to the vet, you know what I mean.) In other words, if you try to move a 1,200-pound piano, you’ll probably notice a measurable difference between the amount of work it takes to shove it along the floor and the amount of work it takes to carry it up the stairs. But don’t take my word for it — you can demonstrate this concept at home. First, find a 1,200-pound piano and push it across the floor. Next, put it on your back and carry it up the stairs. See the difference? (Really, don’t put the piano on your back. I’m just trying to make a point here.) When you move the piano across the floor, you’re really working (pushing) against the frictional resistance (the force that’s produced when two surfaces rub together) of the piano rather than its full weight. Under these circumstances, the frictional resistance of the piano offers less resistance than its full weight. There are times when an object’s full weight is less than its frictional resistance. Consider trying to push a textbook across a deep-pile carpet. Picking the book up and carrying it is easier. Gaining power by working more quickly Power is the rate of work. If Mary Lou is able to lift more 50-pound sacks of potatoes onto the truck bed in 10 minutes than Joe is, Mary Lou is more powerful than Joe. Mathematically speaking, Power = Work / Time. In this formula, work is usually measured in foot-pounds, time is measured in minutes, and power is measured in foot-pounds per minute. However, the unit of measure for power is commonly put in terms of horsepower (hp). Horsepower is derived from the estimate that an average horse can do 33,000 foot-pounds of work in 1 minute (according to James Watt). Therefore, 1 horsepower = 33,000 foot-pounds per minute. One horsepower is also the same as 550 foot-pounds per second.

View ArticleArticle / Updated 04-23-2020

Having an extensive vocabulary can help you do well on the ASVAB Word Knowledge subtest. But even if you don’t have a huge vocabulary, the strategies in this section can help you make up for that. You can acquire vocabulary words in the short term as well as over a long period of time. Combining both approaches is best, but if you’re pressed for time, focus on short-term memorization and test-taking skills. Reading your way to a larger vocabulary In a world of DVDs, video games, and 17 billion channels on TV, the pastime of reading for enjoyment is quickly fading. To build your vocabulary, you have to read — it’s that simple. Studies consistently show that those who read for enjoyment have a much larger vocabulary than those who dislike reading. You have to see the words in print, not just hear someone say them. Besides, people can read and understand many more words than they could ever use in conversation. That doesn’t mean you have to start with Advanced Astrophysics. In fact, if you don’t read much, you can start with your daily newspaper, a news magazine, or any type of reading material that’s just a notch or two above what you ordinarily read. Choose topics that interest you. If you’re interested in the subject matter, you’ll enjoy reading more. Plus, you may learn something new! When you encounter a word you don’t know, try to understand what it means by looking at the context in which the word is used. For example, if you read, “The scientist extrapolated from the data,” and you don’t know what extrapolated means, you can try substituting words you do know to see whether they’d make sense. For example, the scientist probably didn’t hide from the data. She probably used the data to make some sort of decision, judgment, or guess. To confirm your understanding of the word, check your dictionary. Making predictions like this can help you remember a definition for the long term. You may even consider keeping a running list of terms you come across as you read, along with their definitions (see the following section). On the Word Knowledge subtest of the ASVAB, you often won’t be able to guess what a word means from its context (in many cases, there’s no context in the test because the words aren’t used in sentences). You also won’t be able to look the word up in the dictionary. But considering context and consulting a dictionary are two great ways to discover vocabulary words during your test preparation. Keeping a list and checking it twice Not long ago, an 11-year-old girl went through the entire dictionary and made a list of all the words she didn’t know. (The process took several months.) She then studied the list faithfully for a year and went on to win first place in the National Spelling Bee finals. You don’t have to go to this extent, but even putting in a tenth of her effort can dramatically improve your scores on the Word Knowledge subtest. One way to improve your vocabulary is to keep a word list. Here’s how that list works: When you hear or read a word that you don’t understand, jot it down or make note of it in your smartphone. When you have a chance, look up the word in the dictionary and then write the meaning on your list. Use the word in a sentence that you make up. Write the sentence down, too. Use your new word in everyday conversation. Finding a way to work the word zenith into a description of last night’s basketball game requires creativity, but you won’t forget what the word means. Arrange your list by related items so the words are easier to remember. For example, list the words having to do with your work on one page, words related to mechanical knowledge on another page, and so on. You can also find websites that offer lists of words if you spend a few minutes surfing. Try using search phrases such as “vocabulary words” and “SAT words.” Here are a few resources: Vocabulary.com: This site offers thousands of vocabulary words and their definitions, as well as interactive, adaptive games to help you learn. Dictionary.com and Thesaurus.com: Dictionary.com includes a great online dictionary and word of the day. The related site Thesaurus.com, which links back to the dictionary, gives you the same word of the day as well as lists of synonyms and antonyms. Merriam-Webster online: Merriam-Webster online (m-w.com) is another useful site with a free online dictionary, thesaurus, and word of the day. A ton of books exist to help build your vocabulary. Try Vocabulary For Dummies by Laurie E. Rozakis or SAT Vocabulary For Dummies by Suzee Vlk, both published by Wiley. These books are great resources designed to help you improve your word-knowledge skills. Crosswords: Making vocabulary fun My grandma always kept a book of crossword puzzles in the center of her kitchen table — and she always kept an ink pen inside to complete the puzzles. (You know somebody’s good if she’s doing crossword puzzles in ink!) So, what was her secret? She’d been doing crosswords since the 1940s, long before you could play word games on a smartphone. One of the great things about crossword puzzles (other than fun) is that you can find them at all levels of difficulty. Start with one that has a difficulty consistent with your word-knowledge ability and then work your way up to more difficult puzzles. Before you know it, you’ll be a lean, mean word machine and have loads of fun in the process. Dozens of free crossword apps are available for phones, so you don’t even need to buy a book in the checkout lane at the supermarket. Sounding off by sounding it out Sometimes you actually know a word because you’ve heard it in conversation, but you don’t recognize it when you see it written down. For instance, a student who’d heard the word placebo (pronounced “plah-see-bow”) knew that it meant an inactive substance, like a sugar pill. But when she came across it in writing, she didn’t recognize it. She thought it was a word pronounced “plah-chee-bow,” which she’d never heard before. When you see a word on the ASVAB that you don’t recognize, try pronouncing it (not out loud, please) a couple of different ways. The following pronunciation rules can help you out: Sometimes letters are silent, like the b in subtle or the k in A letter at the end of a word may be silent, especially if the word is French; for instance, coup is pronounced coo. Some sounds have unusual pronunciations in certain contexts. Think of the first l in colonel, which is pronounced like The letter c can sound like s (lice) or k (despicable). The letter i after a t can form a sound like Think of the word initiate. The letter x at the beginning of a word is generally pronounced like z (Xerox). A vowel at the end of a word can change the pronunciation of letters in the word. The word wag has a different g sound than the word When several vowels are right next to each other, they can be pronounced many different ways (consider boo, boa, and bout). Try a couple of different possibilities. For instance, if you see the word feint, you may think that it should be pronounced feent or fiynt, but it in fact sounds like It means fake or pretend.

View ArticleArticle / Updated 04-23-2020

Yes, you must know math for the ASVAB. Math has its own vocabulary. In order to understand what each problem on the ASVAB Mathematical Knowledge subtest asks, you need to understand certain mathematical terms. Integer: An integer is any positive or negative whole number or zero. The ASVAB often requires you to work with integers, such as –6, 0, or 27. Numerical factors: Factors are integers (whole numbers) that can be divided evenly into another integer. To factor a number, you simply determine the numbers that you can divide into it. For example, 8 can be divided by the numbers 2 and 4 (in addition to 1 and 8), so 2 and 4 are factors of 8. The prime factorization of the number 30 is written 2 × 3 × 5. Numbers may be either composite or prime, depending on how many factors they have: Composite number: A composite number is a whole number that can be divided evenly by itself and by 1, as well as by one or more other whole numbers; in other words, it has more than two factors. Examples of composite numbers are 6 (whose factors are 1, 2, 3, and 6), 9 (whose factors are 1, 3, and 9), and 12 (whose factors are 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, and 12). Prime number: A prime number is a whole number that can be divided evenly by itself and by 1 but not by any other number, which means that it has exactly two factors. The number 1 is not a prime number. Examples of prime numbers are 2 (whose factors are 1 and 2), 5 (whose factors are 1 and 5), and 11 (whose factors are 1 and 11). Base: A base is a number that’s used as a factor a specific number of times — it’s a number raised to an exponent. For instance, the term 43 (which can be written 4 × 4 × 4, and in which 4 is a factor three times) has a base of 4. Exponent: An exponent is a shorthand method of indicating repeated multiplication. For example, 15 × 15 also can be expressed as 152, which is also known as “15 squared” or “15 to the second power.” The small number written slightly above and to the right of a number is the exponent, and it indicates the number of times you multiply the base by itself. Note that 152 (15 × 15), which equals 225, isn’t the same as 15 × 2 (which equals 30). To express 15 × 15 × 15 using this shorthand method, simply write it as 153, which is also called “15 cubed” or “15 to the third power.” Again, 153 (which equals 3,375) isn’t the same as 15 × 3 (which equals 45). Square root: The square root of a number is the number that, when multiplied by itself (in other words, squared), equals the original number. For example, the square root of 36 is 6. If you square 6, or multiply it by itself, you produce 36. Factorial: A factorial is an operation represented by an exclamation point (!). You calculate a factorial by finding the product of (multiplying) a whole number and all the whole numbers less than it down to 1. That means 6 factorial (6!) is 6 × 5 × 4 × 3 × 2 × 1 = 720. A factorial helps you determine permutations — all the different possible ways an event may turn out. For example, if you want to know how many different ways six runners could finish a race (permutation), you would solve for 6!: 6 × 5 × 4 × 3 × 2 × 1. Reciprocal: A reciprocal is the number by which another number can be multiplied to produce 1; if you have a fraction, its reciprocal is that fraction turned upside down. For example, the reciprocal of 3 is 1/3. If you multiply 3 times1/3, you get 1. The reciprocal of 1/6 is 6/1 (which is the same thing as 6) . The reciprocal of 2/3 is 3/2. The number 0 doesn’t have a reciprocal. Get the idea? Rounding: Rounding is limiting a number to a certain number of significant digits (replacing some digits with zeroes). You perform rounding operations all the time — often without even thinking about it. If you have $1.97 in change in your pocket, you may say, “I have about two dollars.” The rounding process simplifies mathematical operations. Often, numbers are rounded to the nearest tenth. The ASVAB may ask you to do this. If the number you’re eliminating is 5 or over, round up; for any number under 5, round down. For example, 1.55 rounded to the nearest tenth can be rounded up to 1.6, and 1.34 can be rounded down to 1.3. Many math problems require rounding—especially when you’re doing all this without a calculator. For example, pi (π) represents a number approximately equal to 3.141592653589793238462643383 (and on and on and on). However, in mathematical operations and on the ASVAB, it’s common to round π to 3.14.

View ArticleArticle / Updated 04-23-2020

Most of the time, the ASVAB Mathematics Knowledge subtest contains only one or two questions testing each specific mathematical concept, such as square roots or irrational numbers. By understanding the basics of square roots, perfect squares, irrational numbers, and other root basics, you should ensure you score well on this subtest. Square Roots A square root is the factor of a number that, when multiplied by itself, produces the number. Take the number 36, for example. One of the factors of 36 is 6. If you multiply 6 by itself (6 × 6), you come up with 36, so 6 is the square root of 36. The number 36 has other factors, such as 18. But if you multiply 18 by itself (18 × 18), you get 324, not 36. So, 18 isn’t the square root of 36. All whole numbers are grouped into one of two camps when it comes to roots: Perfect squares: Only a few whole numbers, called perfect squares, have exact square roots. For example, the square root of 25 is 5. Irrational numbers: Other whole numbers have square roots that are decimals that go on forever and have no pattern that repeats (nonrepeating, nonterminating decimals), so they’re called irrational numbers. The square root of 30 is 5.4772255 with no end to the decimal places, so the square root of 30 is an irrational number. The sign for a square root is called the radical sign. It looks like this: . Here’s how you use it: means “the square root of 36” — in other words, 6. Perfect squares Square roots can be difficult to find at times without a calculator, but because you can’t use a calculator during the test, you’re going to have to use your mind and some guessing methods. To find the square root of a number without a calculator, make an educated guess and then verify your results. To use the educated-guess method (see the next section), you have to know the square roots of a few perfect squares. One good way to do this is to memorize the squares of the square roots 1 through 12: 1 is the square root of 1 (1 × 1 = 1) 2 is the square root of 4 (2 × 2 = 4) 3 is the square root of 9 (3 × 3 = 9) 4 is the square root of 16 (4 × 4 = 16) 5 is the square root of 25 (5 × 5 = 25) 6 is the square root of 36 (6 × 6 = 36) 7 is the square root of 49 (7 × 7 = 49) 8 is the square root of 64 (8 × 8 = 64) 9 is the square root of 81 (9 × 9 = 81) 10 is the square root of 100 (10 × 10 = 100) 11 is the square root of 121 (11 × 11 = 121) 12 is the square root of 144 (12 × 12 = 144) Irrational numbers When the ASVAB asks you to figure square roots of numbers that aren’t perfect squares, the task gets a bit more difficult. In this case, the ASVAB usually asks you to find the square root to the nearest tenth. Suppose you run across this problem: Think about what you know: You know that the square root of 49 is 7, and 54 is slightly greater than 49. You also know that the square root of 64 is 8, and 54 is slightly less than 64. So, if the number 54 is somewhere between 49 and 64, the square root of 54 is somewhere between 7 and 8. Because 54 is closer to 49 than to 64, the square root will be closer to 7 than to 8, so you can try 7.3 as the square root of 54. Multiply 7.3 by itself: 7.3 × 7.3 = 53.29, which is very close to 54. Now try multiplying 7.4 by itself to see if it’s any closer to 54: 7.4 × 7.4 = 54.76, which isn’t as close to 54 as 53.29. Therefore, 7.3 is the square root of 54 to the nearest tenth without going over. Other roots The wonderful world of math is also home to concepts like cube roots, fourth roots, fifth roots, and so on. A root is a factor of a number that when cubed (multiplied by itself three times), taken to the fourth power (multiplied by itself four times), and so on produces the original number. A couple of examples seem to be in order: The cube root of 27 is 3. If you cube 3 (also known as raising it to the third power or multiplying 3 × 3 × 3), the product is 27. The fourth root of 16 is the number that, when multiplied by itself four times, equals 16. Any guesses? Drumroll, please: 2 is the fourth root of 16 because 2 × 2 × 2 × 2 = 16.

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