Mathematics Knowledge

The Mathematics Knowledge section of the ASVAB test tends to be more straightforward than the Arithmetic Reasoning section, so you can expect to see fewer word problems in this area. However, you will be expected to understand concepts from algebra and geometry in addition to the basic math that is tested in the Arithmetic Reasoning section.

Some of the concepts you can expect to find on the Mathematics Knowledge section include:

  • Real numbers
  • Imaginary numbers
  • Rational numbers
  • Irrational numbers
  • Exponents
  • Whole numbers
  • Natural numbers
  • Integers
  • Composite numbers
  • Fractions
  • Inequalities

There are 25 questions on the Mathematics Knowledge portion. You have 24 minutes to complete this section, so you should spend no more than one minute to determine each answer.

Math is a hard subject for many people, but the only way to develop your skills is to practice. The best way to make sure you’re prepared for the Mathematics Knowledge section is to complete several practice tests based on the resources you find online. Time yourself as you work in order to determine if you’re working at the appropriate pace.

Although some forms of standardized tests give penalties for wrong answers, this exam doesn’t. Scores are calculated based on correct answers only. You should always answer the question, even if you are simply making an educated guess based on the process of elimination.

Mathematics Knowledge and AFQT Scores

The Mathematics Knowledge, Arithmetic Reasoning, Paragraph Comprehension, and Word Knowledge sections of the exam are used to calculate an Armed Forces Qualification Test (AFQT) score that determines your basic eligibility for enlistment. Each branch of the military has different minimum AFQT requirements, although recruits with scores that classify them as Category I (93-99) or Category II (65-92) will be given a broader range of enlistment incentives.

Mathematics Knowledge scores are also used to calculate Military Occupational Specialty (MOS) scores. Sometimes called “line scores” or “composite scores,” MOS scores decide if you’re eligible for training in a particular career field. Clerical, administrative, electrical, and skilled technical jobs all require high scores on the Mathematics Knowledge portion of the ASVAB.