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April 05, 2023

It’s Time for the Military to Rethink Entrance Examinations

By LCDR Stewart Latwin

Since 1968, the military has used the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery, or ASVAB, to assess all incoming recruits. This single test predicts academic skills and determines what military occupational specialty, or MOS, the recruit is qualified to perform in their service.

However, these evaluations are subject to bias, such a race or income inequality, and don’t accurately measure a recruit’s aptitude to perform a job. In short, they focus on mathematical and verbal skills that aren’t indicative of actual intelligence or the ability to learn. By including a series of practical, task-based evaluations and redesigning the academic exam to test ability to perform a skill and not simply academic knowledge, the ASVAB can become a better assessment of a recruit’s aptitude — and potentially their career success.

The military needs to find better methods to match an individual’s abilities to a job in order to become a more effective fighting force.

It is time to replace the ASVAB with a new method of assessing aptitude and ability to learn a trade.

The ASVAB is a mandatory 3-hour standardized test designed to assess strengths and weaknesses in verbal, math, science, and spatial reasoning domains for all recruits entering the military, regardless of service.

Read the full article from Military Times.

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