Chapter 10

Mechanical Comprehension


Using the forces of physics

Figuring out the principles of work

Manipulating machines to help you work

Jacking up your test score

If your M-16A2 .223 caliber rifle jams on the firing range, knowing how to take it apart and put it back together will benefit you. Of course, your drill sergeant in basic training will be more than happy to teach you this, but how easily you grasp such tasks depends greatly on your aptitude for understanding simple mechanical operations. That’s the purpose of the Mechanical Comprehension (MC) subtest of the ASVAB.

The questions on this subtest measure your understanding of simple machines and mechanisms. Many of the questions on this subtest display a diagram, such as a series of gears, followed by a question, such as which direction the gears turn or how fast they revolve. This subtest is almost all about mechanical physics, so you may want to review some basic physics textbooks from your local library.

remember Only some military jobs require a good score on this subtest. Turn to Appendix A for information about the subtest scores you need to qualify for specific military jobs. If you have no interest in taking apart a fighter aircraft or rebuilding a tank, you’re better off reviewing for the Word Knowledge or Arithmetic Reasoning subtests, which make up part of the core exam (the AFQT; see Chapter 1) that ...

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