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# How do they grade the AST for the RAF

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1. How do they grade the AST for the RAF
Can anyone tell me the difference between the weightings of groups A,B,C and D in the AST, in terms of scoring. Someone who is more enlightened than me kindly explain!
2. Re: How do they grade the AST for the RAF
Seriously, you don't need to know or worry about this. All I'll say is that the ABCD scores are calculated from the other parts of the test (Numerical Reasoning, Verbal Reasoning and the rest) - but the AST scores required for jobs can change very quickly, hence you'll find other threads where the answer is 'don't try to tailor your scores around certain areas and just do your best!'

What are you applying for?
3. Re: How do they grade the AST for the RAF
You do your best at all of the tests. You do not pick a part of the test to do better on - you do all of it to the best of your ability. The sections don't matter to you at all.
4. Re: How do they grade the AST for the RAF
There are 6 groups. The trade you are going for determines which group you need to score highest in. (if you let me know your trade I can tell you what score you need).
There are also a further 6 score groups called "Specific Skills/Staines Scores", These are in VR,NR,WR,EC,MC,SR (verbal,numberical,etc.)...
Again, your chosen trade will have a specific staines score in 1 or more of these groups...
E.g.

I am a medic, I needed a minimum of 50 in group C and a VR of 6 and a NR of 6.
5. Re: How do they grade the AST for the RAF
(Original post by rhysowen)
There are 6 groups. The trade you are going for determines which group you need to score highest in. (if you let me know your trade I can tell you what score you need).
There are also a further 6 score groups called "Specific Skills/Staines Scores", These are in VR,NR,WR,EC,MC,SR (verbal,numberical,etc.)...
Again, your chosen trade will have a specific staines score in 1 or more of these groups...
E.g.

I am a medic, I needed a minimum of 50 in group C and a VR of 6 and a NR of 6.
Whilst telling someone they need to do well in VR and NR is OK, telling someone the exact required stanines (not staines) or index score (A,B,C etc) is meaningless; firstly they need to know the individual scores for each section and how they relate to stanines and, secondly, they can’t start working out their index as each one is calculated from the stanines.

Also, how up-to-date is your information? No offence intended if you are 'in the know' for recruitment and have the latest gen; it’s just I have seen posts on here quoting from the letters issued after AST and the scores have since changed.

This is why, ewan, it is better to just do your best and not worry about how it is scored. You won’t have time to keep adding up and thinking “I need 2 more right answers in this section and a minimum of 12 in NR and 8 in everything else to score for my trade.”
6. Re: How do they grade the AST for the RAF
Im not suggesting people sit there ignoring some sections and score counting others.
I just know that if it was me, I'd have some peace of mind knowing when not to blink, when not to panic if I havent managed to finish a section and what to expect.
And yes, the AST scores change over time, but HQ isnt gonna decide all of a suddent to make one a section that previously required a score of 60 to a new required score of 10...
Its just a ballpark.
Some people like to know this kinda thing.
When I was doing my GCSE's and A-Levels, I spent a fair amount of time learning how the scoring worked So I could compensate if needs be and spend less time worrying about it in the future.
Its peace of mind for some people.
We're all different.
Im not endorsing information, I'm simply offering it.
7. Re: How do they grade the AST for the RAF
(Original post by rhysowen)
And yes, the AST scores change over time, but HQ isnt gonna decide all of a suddent to make one a section that previously required a score of 60 to a new required score of 10...
Its just a ballpark.
Although this is partially right, it isn't spot on.

I was told by a friend of mine who works in Recruitment, the scores required can vary a lot. The more people they require in order to fill the required spaces, the lower the scores will need to be. The less people they need, they will make the bar higher.

An example of this is the RAF Police and RAF Regiment. Both forces are similar in some of the duties they do (Force Protection), but the RAF Police require much higher scores. The RAF Regiment are pretty much always recruiting, so they can lower the scores they need, whereas the RAF Police is a smaller force and requires much higher scores.

To the OP, I would suggest the same as other people, you should be trying your hardest at all of the sections. Although there is a minimum requirement for certain sections, you want to be able to stand out from the rest in the event they have a lot of people who have the minimum. When you have your interview after your ASTs, the NCO/Officer interviewing you will have your results in front of them and also know the results of the other people who have taken the tests in the same center.
8. Re: How do they grade the AST for the RAF
No, there won’t be a massive change in the scores, but my point is that quoting stanines doesn’t give any indication of how many points you need in a section as the number of questions in each part varies. For example, 6 for VR might mean you need 10 correct answers out of 20, 6 in NR might be 18 out of 25 - made-up numbers, but you see what I’m getting at; the OP won’t know the ratio and shouldn’t be worrying if they haven’t answered all the questions in one section when they are moving on to the next, they should just do their best.

It was the case some time ago that there was a big surge in recruiting and they lowered the requirements; if anything these days, the scores are going up as it has been found that people who struggle with the AST can struggle in training. The job requirements are dictating the scores, not numbers needed; this is why the scores for aptitude-based jobs were increased a few months ago officer and candidates for ATC and ABM now sit AST.

Not quite sure what you mean by standing out, MarineLukeH. It doesn’t matter what you get in comparison to other people so long as you get the required scores; there is no pecking order and you are judged on your own merits. Getting above the minimum may mean that you score for other trades you haven’t considered and it may be suggested to you that you try for another trade; However, AST is only one part of the selection process and you can sail through it and fail miserably at interview.

Anyway, OP, what are you applying for?
9. Re: How do they grade the AST for the RAF
(Original post by Jengess)
Not quite sure what you mean by standing out, MarineLukeH. It doesn’t matter what you get in comparison to other people so long as you get the required scores; there is no pecking order and you are judged on your own merits. Getting above the minimum may mean that you score for other trades you haven’t considered and it may be suggested to you that you try for another trade; However, AST is only one part of the selection process and you can sail through it and fail miserably at interview.
I simply meant what you have said here. If they need 10 people, but 50 get the minimum on the ASTs, then they need other merits in order to select the 10 from the 50. This is an example as you have the Medical/Physical to do after the ASTs which will also sieve through some of the applicants.

Scores on the AST will be one of the merits that the NCO/Officer interviewing may look at.
10. Re: How do they grade the AST for the RAF
(Original post by MarineLukeH)
I simply meant what you have said here. If they need 10 people, but 50 get the minimum on the ASTs, then they need other merits in order to select the 10 from the 50. This is an example as you have the Medical/Physical to do after the ASTs which will also sieve through some of the applicants.

Scores on the AST will be one of the merits that the NCO/Officer interviewing may look at.

Not true, for Airman a pass is a pass, for Officer/ATC/NCA applicants OASC apptitude score might matter further than just scrapping a pass, depending upon many variables.

If they need 50 people, they would not have 50 people sitting AST, once they have enough applicant recruitment for that trade/branch is shut until the further notice.
11. Re: How do they grade the AST for the RAF
Yes, there are other ways of sifting out applicants, but AST scores aren't used later in the process to do that, whether you are going Officer/NCA or Airman; a pass at AST is a pass and it doesn't matter if you scrape through or ace it.
12. Re: How do they grade the AST for the RAF
You really want to know?
Stanines... basically this is where you fall on a scale so, if you get 0% right in a section you get a stanine of 1, if you get 100% it is a stanine of 9. The others fall on a non linear scale in between, but a stanine of 5 is said to be the national average.

Section scores A, B, C, D etc are worked out from the raw scores of each section. I can't remember exactly (cos it is complicated) but it goes something like this.....

Group A is along the lines of 3xVR+2xNR+SR+2xWR+EC+MC+MM all divided by 3.14 (or some such divider)

Each group places different emphasis on certain sections, ie engineering trades are weighted heavily in favour of NR, EC, and MC

However knowing how it works isn't really going to help you. Have a look at the practice questions, and search for psychometric tests online to get as much practice as you can. Do the tests to the best of your ability, don't try t second gues the system, as that will do you no favours

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Last updated: June 9, 2012
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