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1,001 questions about the ASTB (post your scores & ask your questions here!)


New Member
Hey guys! I wanted to put up my scores and trying to apply to be a pilot. I took the Oar/ASTB for the first time today and got a 44 4/3/4. I am a Business major and a psychology minor with a 3.2. I have been on athletic teams my whole life and have been a college athlete the whole time in college while never missing a single class other than traveling for athletics. What can I do to improve my score? I don't need any crazy answers like looking through the forums because I have been doing that all fall. I ordered practice books and have gone through the practice problems this fall. I think I could really improve my score with full understanding of the compass/heading/identifying the parking lot. I filled out paperwork for MEPS and am basically perfect medically/background so just need to focus on OAR/ASTB. What advice would you guys like to give? It would be awesome to hear from someone that could relate to me.


Well-Known Member
I don't need any crazy answers like looking through the forums because I have been doing that all fall.
Honestly, you should probably look through the forums again. A 4/3/4 isn't a qualifying score for SNA or SNFO. There are packets of gouge spread throughout this thread, and I highly advise that you spend the time to search for them. The gouge will contain 100% of the tools you need to do well on that test. Look up and understand how to do each type of problem. Khan academy and YouTube are extremely valuable.

Actually set aside time in your schedule to prepare for this test and even get a tutor if you need to. You only have two more shots at this. Good luck.


New Member
I really hate how the math portions are still kicking my butt after a month of studying using all the fantastic resources shared here and in Barron's. I test in just over a week and I know I can crush the aviation portions, but I'm getting this sinking feeling I'll tank the OAR again because of it.

Anyone know how it's weighted in terms of questions right to questions answered? I've seen it has been talked about, but no one had the answer quite yet. Curious to see if that's changed.

In any case thank you all for the amazing resources; hopefully I will have done them their due diligence.


I really hate how the math portions are still kicking my butt after a month of studying using all the fantastic resources shared here and in Barron's. I test in just over a week and I know I can crush the aviation portions, but I'm getting this sinking feeling I'll tank the OAR again because of it.

Anyone know how it's weighted in terms of questions right to questions answered? I've seen it has been talked about, but no one had the answer quite yet. Curious to see if that's changed.

In any case thank you all for the amazing resources; hopefully I will have done them their due diligence.
If you tank the math portion, you will tank the rest of the ASTB. I believe math is weighted the most. Your AQR will drop if your math drops.


I just got home from taking the ASTB-E and want to tell my experience while its fresh in my head. First off I want to thank everyone on this thread for all the help because the gouge on this forum is invaluable. There's a reason everyone on this thread says go back 100 pages and read is because that is what will help you succeed. Just find Kyles, Popeyes, the proprofs/cram flash cards and go over every single piece of information you can find. I also bought the Barrons book which I believe was helpful and the Gleim FAA Private Pilot book which I barely cracked open but did go through some of their questions which are relative to the test for sure. I spent roughly 1.5-2 months of prep for this exam and studied weekdays 3-5 hours a night taking off weekends then took off work my two days leading up to the exam to avoid all distractions. The second to last day I studied 8 hours and the day before I studied 4 hours tops(not by choice but had things come up preventing me from studying another 8hours).

This section is literally just a matter of how much work you put in doing practice problems. I spent the most time on this and the ANIT. I literally filled up half of a spiral notebook doing thousands of problems until I couldn't get them wrong. They can't really throw anything at you that you won't know if you properly prepare. Honestly I don't even think I got a problem wrong because I was familiar with every question asked. Although my OAR score might not reflect that, I think other factors were taken into account. I had questions about simplifying problems, drt, the calendar question "if three darts are thrown at a calendar with 31 days, whats the probability of them all landing on different days", I had other probablity questions, basic calculating averages questions, and some averages that were a little more complex than most the practice tests have. For example it gave me 4 numbers with their individual weights then asked what I would need to get on the last test of weigh x to score a certain grade. Nothing too complex but still different than the normal average questions. One that was a little weird but basic alegra was it said two cylinders have the same height but cylinder two is twice the volume. Then asked me to solve for height of the cylinder with double the volume(a little weird solving for height when they're the same, but just rearrange the volume formula basic algebra). I had one or two log problems but no matrices although I was full prepared, got kicked out with 7 minutes or so left.

This section I didn't really study for at all because I felt my time would be better spent on math and the ANIT. I went through maybe 15 questions tops over my two months of studying. It seemed like the questions got pretty hard at some points and all the answer choices were almost identical. If you're studying for this I would definitely recommend using passages that look like massive run-on sentences that are super repetitive and confusing. I had some that were 10 lines long and it was one sentence just trying to confuse me by repeating the same thing with some random adjectives and goals thrown in. I'm not a big reader and never really liked these types of tests but it's really just narrowing down choices. I wrote out a,b,c,d and eliminated on tough ones. If you get to the run-on sentences that are about military stuff, I'd say you're doing well.

I've always enjoyed studying phsyics and have had a natural nack for it so this section I didn't study a whole lot on. I did the Barron's book as well as a couple practice gouges found here but really focused on concepts and gears/pulley's. I didn't have any easy gear questions which probably meant I was heading the right direction. It actually gave me a binary question in this section which I thought was interesting because I expected to get that in math. Nonetheless I had prepped for binary and it was simple. I had two pulley questions one asking how much force would be required to pull the weight and another asking about what length of rope would be used. I felt decent on this but was hard to tell if I was doing good.

So I'd say I probably spent the most time studying for this part of the exam because I have zero flying experience and although I like war movies or American history, I wasn't familiar with a lot of the info this gauged. I didn't have any questions about the space program or anything the gouge mentions about first man in space, first in orbit, etc. I had the question about the me-262 being the first jet, first man to break the speed of sound Chuck Yeager(although my exam said Charles) I'm pretty sure thats still right but based on this definitely try to remember full names and years rather than just the first or last name. I had questions about parts of the boat and plane. I think I started to get a lot of this section right because then it asked me VFR questions and since I have no flying experience I obviously guessed on those since I didn't look into specific VFR rules. Most of the gouge is about components of a ship/plane and what they do, not the actual regulations. Another question asked "when an aileron pitches up, then angle of attack and pressure?" I put angle of attack is decreased and pressure increased since that would cause that wing to go down but not sure if thats right.

So I know this portion isn't talked about a whole bunch because there's no way to study for it or know which answer is better but I'm almost positive this is what brought down my AQR. My goal was 8's across the board and I'm pretty sure this one part of the test screwed that up for me. Idk what everyone thinks the questions going into the test are going to be but I thought it was going to be much more drastic and less of two evil questions. Mine were not like that at all and some that don't even relate. A few examples "people don't listen when you speak or you can achieve moderate goals", "you notice an unusual noise with your car or you talk back to your supervisor", "you would take lead in your group if it's failing or you believe you can achieve your goals", "You can be successful moving to a new city or you prefer to work alone". I'm not sure if it was just my test but I started to notice a lot of repetitive options. If I didn't choice an answer I would notice it would pop up several times again and sometimes I would see two choices together that I know I didn't choose prior. This meant to me that it was really trying to finite my personality. I also noticed that it was gauging I can be independent and would rather not do a group project so I and only I can dictate my grade. Since the AQR is considered your success at OCS I think the fact I "seemed" against groups in the test is why I didn't get an 8. This is just speculation but I definitely know what the exam was doing and it was obvious to me.

I got all of these right on my test and averaged under 2 seconds. I never felt comfortable with the compass trick because I felt it took too long to orient the compass and it's easier for me to spin the picture in my mind. Most of the questions I answered in 1.3-1.7 seconds with a few outliers being 2.5-3 seconds because it was just oriented a way that I wasn't expecting and I wanted to think to make sure I was 100% right. I would definitely say that correctness is better than speed but in my case neither were really an issue. I had a lot of questions about this section before I took the test so I'll try my best to explain exactly how it works for anyone who was curious like me. So the flash cards with the satellite image pointing to the red dot are almost identical to the test. The only difference is on the yellow arrow the flashcards have, there is an extra arrow midway pointing the direction. They also aren't always perfectly at 45* like the flashcards are which is what caused some of my answers to take 2.5-3 seconds. This also means that the car parks shown on your screen will be oriented different. The map will be on the left and your carparks at the same height to the right and you phsyically click on the carpark of your choice. It will ask which car park on the headset and when you click the carpark it will show your reaction time as well as green or red for right or wrong. I'm pretty sure that you get to see the image before the timer starts, because I don't think the timer starts until the direction comes out of the headset. I noticed I was much faster on this exam than the flashcards.

For this part of the exam and during the tracking portion I actually pulled off the nontarget ear part of the headphones. I noticed that during my exam it definitely helped leaning when I had both on, but they would say the correct number quieter than all the other numbers making it harder. I literally took my hand off the throttle for a second to switch ears so I could get them right.

I was feeling pretty good up until this part of the exam lol. First it's throttle tracking up and down alone, then joystick alone, then together, then together with dichotic, then together with emergencies(no dichotic). I even bought a joystick so I could practice but I feel I was completely unprepared when the actual test came. I used a cheap flightmaster HOTUS X on my mac(completely not worthy for sims or games because it crashed every time and would lag), but I did find a game that was helpful called aim booster because being an outdated mac none of the aim lab or other aim trainers would work since my computer is slow. I feel this helped in the sense of getting me accustomed to the joystick but I couldn't find anything similar that uses both a joystick and throttle. I found a sim that I used but in a sim you're never going to be going up and down crazy fast with a throttle and sporadically all over the place with a joystick at the same time. The test is not fluid movements they go all over the place and made me feel like I had zero coordination. I was thinking during the test how I was gonna get a 2 or something bc I couldn't even match the joystick when it was alone, much less together. Focus on the dichotic portion as your priority and in the next stage do the emergencies as fast as possible. I completely stopped tracking to do the emergencies then once all three were cleared all I had to do was track which felt like it was never going to end.
My scores:
OAR: 58
AQR: 7
My goal scores were 62 8/8/8 and I came pretty close but that one 7 really annoyed me because I'm almost positive I know what it came from too lol. Overally this exam is going to feel like your doing horrible at the end but stick with it. Bring snacks and a jacket because it was easily 60* in my room I even put my hood on. Everyone on here has been more than helpful to me so feel free to pm me with questions. This was my first and hopefully only attempt by the way. I didn't like the idea of most recent score instead of highest so I studied a ton to knock it out in one shot.


New Member
Well guys, I didn't do so hot on the OAR. I lacked studying properly and I have no fair excuses as to why I didn't. Also, I could have pushed the test back a couple of weeks, but I'm rushed to get my package out. That being said, I scored a 40 which is the bare minimum for SWO. Should I submit my package either way? I think I have pretty excellent letters of rec, I'm about to work on my personal statement, I have a 3.3 GPA in Environmental Science, and I've always heard that SWO positions are typically the highest in demand. Thanks!


New Member
Hello everyone,
I’ve been a quiet member of this forum for the last 3 weeks just browsing around this topic back and forward and absorbing as much information as possible. I just finished my test couple of minutes ago and wanted to thank everyone here because there is no way I would be able to do it without you guys!
little bit of background - I was born in Ukraine and lived there for 20 years. I have 3 years of college degree in Aviation and space engineering From Ukraine (GPA around 2.75) which I later transferred to the US college to finish my degree in electronic engineering technology with GPA of 3.76.
Math section: I love math and was worried the least about this section. I had I think about 5 probability questions, one of them someone just posted earlier about darts and calendar with 31 days and what’s the chance of getting three different dates; some exponents, I also had a simple logarithm solving problem (As long as you know what logarithm is it was pretty easy to solve it) in the end and got kicked out right after it when about 10-15 minutes left I think.
Reading: I was not practicing at all for this section (probably should have though, especially me being non native English speaker) and had variety of passages in a random order - difficult mixed with easy ones, so I was sure that I was doing HORRIBLE because some of them were just impossible to choose the answers for. I ran out of time on this.
Mechanics: I had pulleys and some other simple machines questions, nothing too crazy. I did have to guess on couple of them and also ran out of time there too.
ANIT: Like people mentioned before - Kyle’s guide was incredible source for this section and most of the questions were from Popeye’s word document attached in there. I had to guess couple of VFR questions but got kicked out after like 5 minutes I think.
UAV: compass trick!!! I didn’t practice a lot but once you get it it’s pretty easy so I couldn’t justify wasting time on improving my average by 0.5 seconds. Just make sure you know the idea of it and practice couple time with flash cards that showing an actual map and it’s gonna be a piece of cake for you.
Listening: I was just alternating my headphones and it made it super easy. I also wrote down 1-3-5-7-9 on the left side by the throttle and 2-4-6-8 on the right side by the joystick and I feel like it helped me later when I had to multitask.
Tracking: its Not that bad separately but when everything came together it was just a hot mess. I prioritized vertical and was just moving a joystick around like WTF. Wrote down emergency procedures also and pretty sure got all of them correct. Got each of the emergency.

I got 52 7/7/8 (I think my OAR would be better if I wouldn’t tank reading) and hoping to be able to submit for the closest board by December 19th since my medical and everything else is almost complete. But in the worst case it will have to be April.


New Member
Hello Everyone,

this forum gives a lot of hope to all citizens. Taking OAR soon. Hope brings courage. Courage allows commitment! All gives you Honor to stand tall. Coming strong with secret sauce!! Appreciate all Air Warriors standing strong!!! Undisputed Strong Ameircen!!
Just took the test. First time. Studied for about 4 days with materials from Kyle's Study Kit. No prior aviation knowledge. No video game experience.
Plan was to take it, then see what I needed to practice on, then retake, but my recruiter says these are good enough scores. Can someone please explain to me what immediate selection qualification means?

Math: Very difficult right off the bat. I'm terrible at word problems. Weighted averages, averages/percents, matrix, probability. I ran out of time.
Reading: Surprisingly easy. I read a lot for fun? Finished with ~5 mins to spare.
Mechanics: I'm terrible at this too. Projectile speeds, pulleys, levers, Bernoulli, horizontal/vertical velocity. Ran out of time on a combined spring/pulley problem.

Aviation/Nautical: Study from Popeye's ANIT in Kyle's link. https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1AvPi5oH_h_13TGajDvflDWkftwXO8LS6 That was a godsend. Make flash cards out of that entire document. Many questions about specific planes. Some VFR questions. Finished with ~10 mins to spare.

UAV: I guess I'm just an idiot because the compass trick only partially worked for me. I found out in the practice that the answer was always the opposite side from what my little hand compass said so I just went with it. Averaged 3.5 seconds. Had some long ones (9-12 secs) when my brain ceased to work at times.
Listening: The headset they had was stereo so I could hear both the left and right in each ear. I definitely could do better another go around.
Tracking: That was a hot mess for me. Up is down on one and up is up on another. By the end I felt I was doing better, but maybe my standards just lowered. The combined listening I messed up a few times when I chose the right button when I should have clicked the left left.
Missed 1 emergency section because I didn't realize there were fuel gauges while I was trying to track. I made three cheat sheets and proper them up in front of the screen.

While taking it, I was convinced I got 4's on that entire test. It was very challenging.
Keep up your hard studying, you got this!
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New Member
Hi all! I suppose it is finally my time to write on here.

After using this forum for as many tips, hints, tricks, and information I took my third attempt at the ASTB today.

First attempt: 35 1/2/1 - Sometime around 2016
Second attempt: 50 4/5/4 - 13 Aug 2019
Third attempt: 54 7/8/6 - 12 Sept 2019

Going into my last test I was pretty nervous, but as soon as I sat down the nervousness went away. I have to thank everyone on here that has posted their guides, tips, tricks, hints, etc. I did what everyone else stated to do, go back about 30-40 pages and just READ, save the information on your computer, write it down, whatever helps you find it easier. After going through all of the gouges, I searched online "ASTB Flashcards" and a ton of information came up. So thank you everyone who has contributed! I'll be applying for SNA in the upcoming board!

Math: It started fairly simple with probability and ratio problems, did some algebra (nothing too crazy, negative exponent divided by other numbers with exponents) and ended up with matrix problems. The test kicked me out early after a few matrix problems. I am no where near a math whiz, and used YouTube to tutor myself, I watched Khan Academy and The Organic Chemistry Tutor mainly. The books did not explain the math well enough for me.

Reading: Like everyone else stated, bland and boring. I read car manuals, old navy documents (NAVADMIN helped out a lot) and used some of the practice problems I found on this website and books.

Mechanical: Super easy, this is where my studies were focused. I had a questions about at which point is velocity the highest in a tube, a few electricity questions, one was about a piece of metal wrapped around a nail and how much voltage it could run if it was not around the nail, and then some lever stuff. YouTube again has great information and the information on the website is plentiful.

Naval Aviation Trait Facet Inventory: It sucked, there is no way to study for it, but the way I answered was, "would I rather" in a sense would I rather blow a stop sign, or would I rather break something and not tell anyone. I attempted to choose the answer that was more like me, but also one that showed leadership and taking responsibility.

ANIT: Studied pretty hard for this one as well. Definitely brush up on ALL major aviation history, not just Navy. Some questions were "which aircraft first broke the sound barrier" Which aircraft was fitted for refueling during Operation Iraqi Freedom. There is tons of information out there.

PBM: This is where I started getting nervous again, but after the compass section I decided to treat it more as a video game, instead of test, and I actually started smiling and having fun. I did the compass trick found on YouTube, definitely helped. I recommend downloading Digital Combat Simulator (DCS) from Steam, and get a cheap throttle and joystick (Navy uses the Saitek X52), and just familiarize yourself with multitasking. The vertical tracking and stick tracking are simple enough, the dichotic listening is where things get harder. When it first started I learned into the target ear, and closed my eyes. Once the dichotic listening and target tracking started I still leaned over to the target ear, and my MAIN focus was listening. The last section with the emergencies was cake as well, just write down the procedures on the paper, and learn which way the engine power and fuel moves the needle.

If anyone has any questions, feel free to ask, I'll try to answer anything to the best of my ability!

I have one question regarding the emergency procedure portion of the test, I understand there are three settings, HIGH, LOW, and MID(I think I can't remember if this one is right). When I took the test for the second time, I got very confused with which color represents which setting and failed the first two procedures, which promptly kicked me out and showed me my score of 5/4/5. Do you know what color represents which setting? I'm really stressing about this part of the test because I don't want to make the same mistake.