OAR Tests: 20 Important Facts you need to Know

By | July 17, 2023
OAR Tests
You will be expected to take the OAR test if you are applying for the officer aviation program with the U.S. Navy, Coast Guard, or Marine Corps

The OAR, which is also known as the Officer Aptitude Rating, is a division of the superior Aviation Standard Test Battery Exam (ASTB-E) used by the Marine Corps, Coast Guard, and the Navy.

Applicants will choose to take the OAR only or as part of the full ASTB-E.

The OAR test consists of the first three core tests, including comprehension, reading, and math.

Your scores will be used to determine whether or not you qualify for officer training. The OAR test is also used to determine which career will be a perfect match for you.

The OAR is a standardized test designed to assess the skills and competencies of individuals aspiring to become officers in the US military.

Participants of the OAR test are provided with one and a half to two hours for the entire duration of the exam.

The ASTB-E, however, can take 2 hours to 3 hours and 15 minutes to complete.

The ASTB-E is meant to be taken as a whole by those applying for aviation programs. Only the OAR subtest may be taken by individuals that are applying for separate programs such as the Navy Officer Candidate School.

20 Important Facts about OAR Tests you need to Know

Here are important facts and tips about the OAR tests that you need to know to give a great performance in it:

  1. What is OAR test?

The OAR test comprises Math Skills, Reading Comprehension, and Mechanical Comprehension being the three subtests.

These three subtests are a less significant component of the Aviation Standard Test Battery (ASTB-E).

The U.S. Navy, Coast Guard, and Marine Corps make use of the ASTB-E when hiring officer aviation program applicants.

If you are applying for aviation programs, you need to take the whole ASTB-E containing the OAR test.

Nevertheless, you might need only the OAR portion if you are not interested in any of the aviation-related careers like the Navy Officer Candidate School (Navy OCS).

Your Officer Recruiter has all the information you need.

  1. What types of questions are there on the OAR test?

The OAR test is utilized by the U.S. Navy to evaluate the basic skills required to become a Navy Officer.

The questions of the OAR test are designed based on your performance until the test can discover your skills and abilities.

In the actual sense, two applicants taking similar tests can be given completely different questions based on their diverse skill sets.

It’s very essential to work industriously and not too fast, especially in the first questions of every section. Don’t be too hasty, but be mindful of time.

  1. Who is qualified to take the OAR test?

Anybody that meets the minimum criteria for applying to the officer training program is qualified to take the OAR test.

You must be a U.S. citizen and fall within the age range of 19 to 35 years with a Bachelor’s degree, in order to apply for Officer Candidate School (OCS).

You can register for the OAR test and apply for the officer training program if you meet those criteria.

You will also undergo a thorough background investigation as part of the application process.

You will need to talk to your recruiter to schedule your test and know more about what is involved in the application process.

You are allowed to take the OAR test not more than three times in your lifetime. Therefore, make an appointment that will give you enough time to prepare.

  1. How long does the OAR test take?

It takes about 2 hours to complete the OAR in APEX, the computer version. However, it takes slightly longer to complete the paper version of the OAR test.

The questions below are designed for the paper version of the OAR test, including their time limits:

  • Math Skills Test – This subtest includes 30 questions with 40 minutes given.
  • Reading Comprehension Test – This subtest contains 20 questions with 30 minutes provided.
  • Mechanical Comprehension Test – This contains 30 questions with 15 minutes offered.
  1. What skills are tested on the OAR test?

The OAR test has three parts and each paper contains its own components. The questions are multiple-choice and intend to assess your basic understanding of these vital principles.

These questions are used to identify whether you have the basic cognitive skills and the knowledge to be successful in the officer training program.

Below are the three parts of the OAR assessment:

Math Skills Test – 30 Questions

  • Basic arithmetic operations
  • Solving for variables
  • Fractions
  • Roots
  • Exponents
  • Calculation of angles
  • Area
  • Perimeter

Reading Comprehension – 20 Questions

  • Extract meaning from text passages
  • Drawing direct inferences from the text

Mechanical Comprehension Test – 30 Questions

  • Principles of gasses and liquids
  • Pressure
  • Volume
  • Velocity
  • Engine components
  • Engine performance
  • Principles of electricity
  • Gears
  • Weight distribution
  • Simple machine operation
  • Pulleys
  • Fulcrums
  1. What is the average required score for the OAR test?

The OAR test presents a score of between 20 and 80. The average required scores for the test ranges from 40 to 60.

The minimum score required to qualify for the officer training will depend on the branch of the military in which you are.

You will need a minimum score of 35 for the Navy. Because many officer training programs are competitive and have a limited number of available spots, you should try your possible best to aim above 35 or 40.

You may not be given admission even if you meet the minimum score. It is your advantage to score higher, even above average to be sure of excellence.

  1. How can I prepare for the OAR test?

You should build up the key cognitive skills that each of the OAR subtests assesses if you really hope to do well. These skills include math, reading comprehension, and mechanical comprehension.

Spending at least a couple of weeks practicing the Mometrix Study Guide will help increase your knowledge of these skills.

There are sample questions on these study tools you can leverage on practicing how to answer exactly the type of questions you will meet on the test.

Each of them highly provides you with proven techniques for improving these important skills and applying them to the type of material you are going to witness on the test day.

  1. What are the three powerful step-formulas to assist you in your OAR test?

These powerful three step-methods are designed to help you pass the OAR test and stand out from the crowd.

i. Step-method 1 – Acquire the correct OAR practice test that simulates exactly the real test
ii. Step-method 2 – Use this practice test to work on your weak points.
iii. Step-method 3 – Use practice frequently to reduce anxiety and improve your performance under pressure during the main test.

  1. How can I take the subtest of ASTB-E?

The ASTB-E and its OAR subtest are administered at more than 250 registered global locations, including Naval Officer recruiting stations, Marine Corps officer selection offices, and military institutes.

Candidates can schedule the time to take the ASTB-E at a location that works best for them in direct collaboration with their recruitment officers.

  1. How much can it cost me to take the OAR test?

The OAR test and ASTB-E are offered free of charge, but you must be qualified and meet the minimum requirements.

  1. What can I bring to the OAR test?

Individuals taking the OAR test should bring some kind of photo identification with them, such as a passport or military identification card, verification of their social security number, and a driver’s license.

You must not bring an electronic device to the OAR test, such as cameras and smartphones, as well as backpacks and other personal belongings into the testing room.

Participants of the OAR test will be given scrap paper and pencils to use during the math section, so they don’t need to bring calculators into the testing room.

  1. What must I do to excel on the OAR test?

Participants of the OAR test will need to demonstrate a full understanding of the three different areas of knowledge.

You need to prepare thoroughly for the OAR test by making use of a study guide such as the one provided by Mometrix Test Preparation.

  1. What are the OAR and the OAR-E?

The OAR test is a fraction of the bigger Aviation Selection Test Battery known as OAR-E.

The OAR-E assesses a candidate’s verbal and quantitative competence, knowledge of general aviation concepts, spatial awareness, and mechanical understanding.

The OAR consists of only a part of the OAR-E that covers verbal and quantitative abilities and mechanical understanding.

The OAR-E is developed and monitored by the Naval Operational Medicine Institute (NOMI) and used to determine the eligibility of college graduates desiring to become aviation officers in the U.S. Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard.

Candidates who are pursuing careers in nonaviation office programs, such as the Officer Candidate School (OCS), may need to take the OAR only.

NOMI collaborated with the Educational Testing Service to administer the OAR/OAR-E tests in paper and computer adaptive test formats.

Eligibility requirements of the tests are established by the Commandant of the Marine Corps and the Naval Personnel Command.

  1. Can I retake the OAR test?

You will be allowed to take the OAR test three times in your lifetime. If you want to retake the test, the date of your retest must not be earlier than 31 days after the date the initial test was taken.

If you desire to retest yet again, you may not retest earlier than 91 days after the first retest.

Your exam results of the OAR test you took previously will not be apportioned to the three-limit lifetime.

  1. What is an OAR test merge?

OAR test merge occurs when candidates who took the OAR-E for the OAR only may come back within 30 days of the first test to complete the OAR-E by taking the remaining subtests.

Candidates have to wait until the OAR score is received before taking the remaining subtests.

The remaining test must be administered using the CAT format even if the OAR test was taken in paper format.

The date the candidate completes the remaining subtests is the official test date toward the three-time lifetime limit.

  1. How is the OAR conducted?

You need to contact your recruiter if you are ready to take the OAR portion of the OAR-E.

In order to be scheduled to take the OAR-E, your initial qualifications will be determined by your recruiter.

When a test seat is available, the location where you are scheduled to take the OAR-E will be determined.

Navy recruiting stations, Marine Corps officer selection offices, military institutes, and NROTC units at chosen universities are possible testing locations for the OAR-E.

  1. How difficult is the OAR test?

The OAR test is considered a very difficult and challenging exam because it normally assesses college-level math.

Another thing that makes the OAR test complex is that it’s considered easier by quite a few people, while a greater number believes it’s difficult.

  1. How long is the OAR test?

The OAR test is about 2 hours in length, indicating that you will have to spend between one minute and one minute thirty seconds to complete each question.

The OAR test is timed and contains 90 questions.

  1. Can I use a calculator on the OAR test?

You are not allowed to use a calculator when taking the OAR test, or even smartphones, smartwatches, or any other device that might be helpful to you during the test.

However, you may be provided with scratch paper and a pencil to solve math problems.

You must remember that your scratch paper must be turned in at the end of your test.

  1. Top tips for the OAR test

Here are some tips that can help you excel in your OAR test, including:

  • Understand what you need to research and study
  • Practice lots of tests
  • Focus on areas you find difficult
  • Please don’t let any past failure discourage you.

OAR Test Practice Questions and Answers

Here are sample OAR test questions (with answers) you can practice with during your preparation:

OAR Math Practice Questions

  1. Have a look at this expression and tell me what the value is ((5(x-2y)+(2-x)^2) ) when(x=3) and (y=-2).

A. 20
B. 50
C. 1156
D. 36

Answer and explanation:

The answer is D

Find the value of (x) and (y).
(x=3) and (y=-2)
((5(x-2y)+(2-x)^2)=(5(3-2(-2))+(2-3)^2)=(5(3+4)+(-1)^2)= (35)+1=36)

  1. What is the slope of a line so perpendicular to another line?
    (4x-2y=12) ?

A. -2
B. 4
C. 2
D. D.(-\frac{1}{2})

Answer and explanation:

The answer is D

If this (y=mx+b) is the equation of a line in slope intercept form, solve for y.
(4x-2y=12 {\Rightarrow} -2y=12-4x {\Rightarrow} y=(12-4x){\div}(-2) {\Rightarrow} y=2x-6)

The slope of this line is 2.

The item of the slopes of two perpendicular lines is -1.

So, the slope of a line that is perpendicular to this line is:

(m_{1} {\times} m_{2} = -1 {\Rightarrow} 2 {\times} m_{2} = -1 {\Rightarrow} m_{2} = \frac{-1}{2})

  1. From the following equations, which one is equal to this expression here?

A. (4x^2- 2y^2)
B. (2x^2+6xy-2y^2)
C. (24x^2+2xy-2y^2)
D. (4x^2+2xy-2y^2)

Answer and explanation:

The answer is D.

Use FOIL method.

((2x+2y)(2x-y) = 4x^2-2xy+4xy-2y^2=4x^2+2xy-2y^2).

  1. In the following equation, what is the product of all possible values of (x)?
    (|x-10| = 3)

A. 3
B. 7
C. 13
D. 91

Answer and explanation:

The answer is D

Write two equations to solve complete values equations.
(x-10) might be either positive 3 or negative 3.

So, (x-10=3 \Rightarrow x=13)

(x-10=-3 \Rightarrow x=7)

Look for the product of solutions: (7 \times 13 = 91).


You need to take the OAR test as part of your application process if you wish to be selected for an officer training program in the Navy.

The scores from these three subtests (math, reading comprehension, and mechanical comprehension) contribute to your overall OAR score.

Take a practice test that simulates the real OAR test, as well as practice and study in an exam condition to ensure utmost success.

Author: Team

We are a team of career experts and hiring professionals with many years of experience who are passionate about creating quality and helpful content for job seekers, recruiters, and all those interested in career-related information, including job description samples, resume and resume objective examples, etc. Learn more about us and how we create our articles: About US.