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The USPS recently retired their more general hiring exams 473 and 473e. This exam has since been replaced by department-specific tests like Virtual Entry Assessment 475 for mail handling positions. This page details the types of questions you can expect on the exam. Furthermore, there are tips and frequently asked questions to give you even more of an advantage over other applicants. Continue reading to find out more regarding postal exam 475.

Postal Exam 475 Test Sections 

Virtual Entry Assessment 475 is used by the US Postal Service to fill loading and stocking roles such as mail handler and distribution associate. Being very similar to postal exam 476 for mail processors, postal exam 475 includes five (5) sections. These sections can be found in more detail below:  

Introduction  This section usually takes five minutes to complete and includes a brief history of the Postal Service as well as a run-down of all positions screened for by the exam. 

Work Situations  Known as “Work Scenarios” on exam 477, this section of the test consists of 9 questions presenting different situations you may encounter while on the job. You will need to select two (2) out of four (4) answers to determine which you would be most and least likely to do to resolve the issue at hand. 

Check for Errors  This is the only truly objective section found on both postal exams 475 and 476. It consists of 12 questions each containing a pair of 8-digit numbers. If these pairs are the same, you should select “Match” as your answer. If the pair is not an exact match, you should select “Error”. 

Tell Us Your Story  In this section, you will find 22 questions designed to understand your work experience and background. Remember to ensure that the information you provide in this section matches the information you previously revealed in your application and resume. 

Describe Your Approach – You will encounter 79 questions in this section of the test. Each question is used to evaluate different aspects of your personality. Many applicants trip up during this and the Work Scenarios sections due to the bizarre question style and odd answer choices.  

Remember: There is no time limit for any of the sections found on this test. However, you should try to work as quickly and accurately as possible since your score will also reflect the amount of time it took you to complete the test.

Score Higher on the 475 Postal Exam According to the USPS, between 80-90% of all applicants will not pass their exams. As such, the required passing score for all US Postal Service exams is quite high. In order to pass, you must receive a score of at least 70 out of a possible 100 points. Practicing prior to your testing date will help strengthen your skills and test-taking abilities, thus improving your chances of receiving one of the three (3) top scores required by the USPS to continue in the recruitment process.

Note: The US Postal Service is known to rank each applicant based on the total score they received on their recruitment exams. To be considered for the role you have applied for, you must receive a higher score than other applicants.

Score Higher on the 475 Postal Exam   

According to the USPS, between 80-90% of all applicants will not pass their exams. As such, the required passing score for all US Postal Service exams is quite high. In order to pass, you must receive a score of at least 70 out of a possible 100 points. Practicing prior to your testing date will help strengthen your skills and test-taking abilities, thus improving your chances of receiving one of the three (3) top scores required by the USPS to continue in the recruitment process.  

Note: The US Postal Service is known to rank each applicant based on the total score they received on their recruitment exams. To be considered for the role you have applied for, you must receive a higher score than other applicants.

USPS Employment Benefits USPS employs nearly 500,000 workers and their loading and stocking team members have salaries ranging from $35,000 - $90,000. In addition to the 10 holidays, sick days, and 13 paid vacation per year that increases to 20 days after 3 years of service and to 26 days after 15 years of service. Furthermore, you will receive health, dental, and vision insurance plans, along with a Thrifts Saving Plan (TSP) which is similar to a 401(K)-retirement savings plan offered by private-sector employers. 

 

Improve your chances by 73%

Practice the 475 USPS-style Personality & SJT questions. Get access to additional drills & study guides to land the job you want. 

Why it is Essential to Prepare

The failure rate of postal exam 475 should come as no surprise given the strange question and answering style found in a few of the sections. Out of the 122 questions on this exam, 110 of them - 90% - fit this bizarre description. Only 12 questions are purely objective where there are definitive right and wrong answers.  It is not unusual for applicants to fail because they never really understand the questions or how to answer them. Below you will find several examples of what makes applicants trip up when going through the USPS testing process:  

  1. The questions are inmultiple choice format. You must select an answer that best suits you, your probable response to a work situation, your experience, your preferred approach to work, your personality, etc. 
  2. The questions are mostly theoretical or hypothetical in nature and can often be misunderstood or not understood at all. 
  3. Any or all of the answer choices can seem reasonable depending upon your particular personality and experienceNote that there will never be one obvious answer that stands out as the best choice. In fact, different answers can be the correct choice for different people and/or for different jobs. 
  4. In one exam section, you are to select two answers, the action you would be most likely to take and the action you would be least likely to take in response to a given situation.  
  5. In another section, each question consists of two descriptions that may be quite similar or radically different. You are to choose which description is more like you and then choose to what degree it is like you. 

Postal Exam 475 Sample Questions  

Below you will find several examples of questions you will encounter when taking postal exam 475. Also included are full answer explanations and test tips.  

1. SJT - Sample Question

One of your colleagues is slackingskipping important steps in the outlined procedures of his job. For a while now you find yourself correcting his mistakes.  




 

Competencies: Teamwork; proactivity; communication skills; problem solving.  

Response A: This response shows poor teamwork and communication skills. You fail to communicate the problem to your fellow employee. Instead, you immediately turn to your supervisor. In doing so, you fail to alert your co-worker to the situation or give him the chance to correct his behaviour.  

Response B: This response may seem proactive as you address the problem directly with your colleague. However, it is aggressive and lacks teamwork skills, as you caution your colleague - threatening to go to your postmaster, rather than discussing the issue in a friendly manner. This response is likely to antagonise your work colleague, and could escalate the situation, thus being the worst response to the situation.  

Response C This response avoids offending your colleague and maintains your good relations; however, it doesn’t provide a solution to the issue. This is a very passive approach. Moreover, this response is irresponsible since your colleague fails to follow work procedures and in doing so, he is harming your work productivity  

Response D: This is a good response to the situation. It is important to be able to communicate with your colleagues about work conflicts. This is a proactive response that tries a cooperative approach to solving problems. Furthermore, pointing out your colleague's mistakes and explaining the impact they have on you is likely to elicit behavioural change in your colleague, and improve both his and your own work productivity.  

2. Error Checking - Sample Question

 

Instructions: 

In the error checking section of the USPS Postal Exams 475 & 476 you will be presented with 12 pairs of eight-digit sequences which you will have to compare. Decide whether they are identical or not, and if both sequences of a pair are identical, mark “Match”. If they are not identical, mark “Error”.  

The pairs are on three screens. Each screen contains four pairs. You only have to compare each of the pairs in the rows of the table, not the columns. 

This section is not timed, but you are encouraged to complete it as quickly as possible. Candidates usually complete all the questions in this section within two minutes. 

Tips: 

Since long sequences of numbers are hard to remember, it is recommended that you “break up” each sequence when comparing it to the other – try comparing the first two to four digits first, then the next two to four digits, and so on. For example, if the sequence is 12345678, only look at 1234 first and compare it to the first four digits of the other sequence. If you find a digit that is not identical between them, mark Error and move on to the next pair. If the first four digits are identical, move on and compare the next four in the sequence. Do not be afraid to mouth or even say the digits when comparing the pairs – hearing the sounds can help you spot the differences between the sequences. Another way to track the differences and help yourself concentrate is to follow the sequences with your finger. This way you will only focus on the relevant line

 

 

 

Original ID 

Printed ID 

1 

Location 1 

96380273 

96830273 

2 

Location 2 

63984201 

63984201 

3 

Location 3 

68326741 

68326741 

4 

Location 4 

96357514 

96367514 

 
Please decide if locations 1-4 are match/not
 match:  





 

 

Improve your chances by 73%

Practice the 475 USPS-style Personality & SJT questions. Get access to additional drills & study guides to land the job you want. 

USPS Exam 475 Tips 

Below you will find a few general tips for passing exam 475 for the USPS. These tips include:  

  • Practicing test questions you are likely to encounter. In the case of postal exam 475, these questions include those for personality, situational judgment, and error-checking.  
  • Give yourself enough time to practice. From the time you receive the email invitation you only have 72 hours to complete your exam. Give yourself enough time to become familiar with the test structure, question types and answering styles as well as to complete the exam in time. Not only will practicing improve your chances of receiving a higher score, but it will also almost certainly eliminate your test-taking anxiety altogether.  
  • Find a quiet place free of distractions to practice. To fully grasp the structure and style of the test, you should practice in a quiet environment free of distractions. This will help increase your mental focus and ability to learn as you go. Note: You should apply these same guidelines to when you are taking the actual exam. 

USPS Exam 475 FAQ 

  1. You must be 18 years old at the time of the appointment or 16 years old with a high school diploma. 
  1. Hold US citizenship or a permanent residency 
  1. Know English at a reasonable level  
  1. Males born after December 31, 1959, must be registered with the Selective Service System   
  1. Possession of a driving license  
  1. Pass a drug test  
  1. No criminal background  

You will need to apply directly from the USPS website. Once you have prepared your resume you should complete the job application including your employment history. Once this has been done, you will be able to view all available positions in your area.  

According to the USPS, 80-90% of applicants fail their entrance exams. On top of that, the question and answering styles can get confusing. Not only does practicing give you the advantage of knowing what to expect, it can also reduce your test-taking anxiety and improve your answering speed and accuracy.  

You have 72 hours (3 days) to complete the exam once you receive the email invitation. We recommend completing this exam in a quiet place free of distractions. You have the option of taking the exam from your smartphone, tablet, or computer anytime and anywhere you choose. 

To pass postal exam 475, you will need to score at least 70 out of a possible 100 points. If they meet specific requirements, veterans and family members of veterans are sometimes granted between 5-10 additional points. Remember: The USPS will choose a total of three (3) applicants with the highest scores to continue in the recruitment process. Receiving a high score increases your chances of being selected to continue to the interview process.   

In the event that you fail USPS exam 475, you will not be able to take it for at least twelve (12) months. As such, you will forfeit your application for the role being offered and have to reapply for a similar position at a later date. 

You can view your test score directly from the USPS website once you have completed it. Keep in my that all test scores lower than 70 points will not be displayed alongside the word “ineligible”.  

No. You will not be guaranteed a job if you happen to pass the test. If you happen to receive one of the top three (3) test scores required by the USPS, you will simply be invited to continue onto the next stage of the recruitment process.

If you pass the exam, your test scores will be valid for two (2) to six (6) years (depending on the role) 

There are several challenges that will arise when taking postal exam 475. For starters, you will have a limited time to complete the test. If you are unable to do so in the allotted 72 hours from the time you receive your invitation email, you will need to reapply for the original role if it is still available.   

Another challenge when taking exam 47are its question structure and answering styles. Practicing before taking the actual test will help familiarize you with both the personality and situational questions, as well as the “Check for Errors” section of the test. Knowing what to expect will help eliminate the element of surprise and ensure your ability to be considered for the role.   

 

Get comprehensive preparation for postal exam 475 with this specialized PrepPack. Find dozens of questions with in-depth answer explanations, additional question drills, and study guides to land the job you want. 

 

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