How to Improve Your Mechanical Aptitude Test Scores

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The mechanical aptitude test is used measure a person’s knowledge of machinery and other physical concepts, including the use of levers, gears, pulley and strings. The test is used for admittance into the military, civil service employment, apprenticeships, emergency service careers and other private sector jobs. Depending on the type of employment, the mechanical aptitude test will cover basic concepts or the ability to solve mechanical equations.

Learn the tools and equipment used in your intended profession. For instance, one job might require knowledge on welding, while another will require you to learn about firefighting equipment. Some mechanical aptitude tests contain questions about specific equipment, while others are more generalized.

Read study guides for the test. The guides include “Barron’s Mechanical Aptitude and Spatial Relations Test” and Peterson’s “Master the Mechanical Aptitude and Spatial Relations Test." These offer practice tests and tools to learn the equations used on the test. Start studying for the test at least two to three months before scheduled exam date.

Take practice tests online. Several websites, including Psychometric Success and Practice Fire Fighters Exam offer tests that provide a basic idea of the questions asked on the exam.

Create flash cards based on the information obtained from the practice tests and study guides. Write down the questions and three to four potential answers on one side of the card, as the test is given in multiple choice. Display the answers on the card's other side. Ask a friend or family member to quiz you on the information. Continue to study using the flash cards until the night before the test. Write down both general knowledge questions and questions specific to your intended profession.


Avoid studying the night before the test. Head to bed early and avoid the use of stimulants or alcohol to ensure you are mentally prepared for the exam.