If you’re interested in entering one of the US Military branches, you may have heard that intelligence testing is required to meet the minimum standards to join the military. So you may be wondering what minimum IQ is required for joining the military, and do I have a high enough IQ to join the military?
The truth is that every branch of the military does require that you achieve a minimum score on a standardized aptitude test to join, but it is not specifically an IQ test. It’s known as the ASVAB test, which stands for Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery.
Although it’s not strictly an IQ test, the ASVAB does have types of questions that overlap with what can be found on an IQ test. For example, both an IQ test and the ASVAB feature Word Knowledge and Arithmetic Reasoning questions. However, IQ tests have spatial reasoning questions while the ASVAB test does not.
There are many different types of jobs within each branch of the military, and many of them require minimum ASVAB scores to be eligible for the job. In most cases, if you have a score that is high enough to join a military branch, but is too low to be eligible for the job that you want, you can retake the ASVAB to see if you can get the score needed to become eligible. Use the links below to view the specific requirements of the branch that you are most interested in:
Many of the military branches, like the Army, also conduct a mandatory pre-accession mental health evaluation before allowing recruits into training. The mental health screening includes a review of past and present emotional, scholastic and medical history.
There are other basic requirements, such as being a US citizen or resident alien, being at least 17 years old, have a high school diploma, and passing a physical exam. Many branches have maximum age requirements as well and vary significantly for each branch. For example, the maximum age to join the Air Force is 39 while it is 27 for the Coast Guard. All of these criteria can be found on the specific branch websites listed above.
Your IQ score is not the factor used to assess your eligibility to join the military, however, your ASVAB score, which is somewhat similar to an IQ test, is critical. Each branch has different scores that are required to qualify for the different jobs, so you will need to check each one individually. Furthermore, even if you meet all of their eligibility requirements, there are still additional requirements that you must meet in order to be eligible to join your requested branch.
The best way to get ready for your upcoming ASVAB test is to take practice tests. There are many free ASVAB practice tests that can be found online to help you prepare for the types of questions found on the test. Once you feel ready to take the real test, set up your exam date by either booking an in-person appointment at your closest Military Entrance Processing Station (MEPS) or scheduling online with a computer at any one of 2,500 Prometric Testing Centers worldwide.
Additionally, you should familiarize yourself with ASVAB test prep tips and get yourself used to each of the test sections that make up the ASVAB. Make sure you know what to expect and don’t get surprised during the actual ASVAB test.
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