There are many military jobs in all branches of the military, including the U.S. Air Force. One of the jobs available in the Air Force is as a pararescueman. Getting involved in pararescue involves getting a particular score on the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB tests), which are given out to prospective members of the military before they join. According to Today's Military, "The ASVAB is one of the most widely used, multiple-aptitude tests in the world, developed and maintained by the Department of Defense."
Pararescue involves recovering aircrew who have crashed or otherwise been downed and injured. Pararescuemen must give medical aid in friendly environments as well as combat situations. They must be able to avoid enemy fire and get the injured crewmembers to a safe area. Treating combat injuries must be done quickly but effectively to avoid the death of the crewmen. Pararescuemen also perform nonmedical duties. For example, they must work as gunners and scanners on their planes while it is in combat. They must have good aim and quick reflexes to serve this job.
Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery
The ASVAB tests how well a prospective member of the military performs in the military's “qualification areas.” There are four different qualification areas: general, mechanical, administrative and electrical. There are 11 different subsets of these qualification areas, including verbal expression, general science, numerical operations and arithmetic reasoning. After applicants have taken this test, their superiors will have an idea of what kind of tasks they can perform. Getting high scores helps them receive the job they want.
The requirements for pararescuemen are fairly low. A pararescueman must score a minimum of 44 on the general test. The rest of the qualification areas are not essential for the job. However, each pararescueman must be in peak physical condition. They have to be able to carry hundreds of pounds of equipment, including their medical gear on their back. They must also have the strength to haul or carry a full-grown man off a battlefield. The ASVAB does not test physical strength, but it will be tested after the applicant has met the minimum ASVAB requirements.
The general section of the ASVAB tests verbal expression, paragraph comprehension and arithmetic reasoning. Questions in the verbal expression section will be multiple choice and consist of defining words. Paragraph comprehension tests how well applicants read and understand what they are reading. They will read a lengthy paragraph and answer multiple questions about it, such as “What was the main point of this paragraph?” Arithmetic reasoning features basic arithmetic equations involving addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. This section may include story problems and straight equations.