USPS Postal Exam 474 - 477: Practice Tests & Examples [2023]
Arbel Postal Exam Expert

Arbel, Postal Exam expert at JobTestPrep.

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What Is the Postal Exam?

The Postal Exam is an online assessment used by the USPS to screen candidates for various positions at the Post Office. As of April 2019, the USPS has launched four new exams, named Virtual Entry Assessments, which replaced the old Postal Exam 473.

Some of the USPS exams' sections consist of unconventional and even tricky question types, designed to assess if you have the right skills and characteristics to work for the Postal Office.

Many users who took the Postal Exam 473 (which is obsolete) before 2019 wonder if their scores are still valid. Unfortunately, these scores are not valid anymore. So you'll need to take one or more of the new USPS exams, depending on the positions you've applied for.

How Long Is the Postal Exam?

The Post Office tests are untimed but most candidates complete the assessments in 45 minutes.

Note: the time it takes you to submit the assessment within the 72-hour window also matters. Candidates who pass the assessment shortly after they receive the invitation are placed first in line for employment. This means that by the time you submit your exam, the position might be already filled and you'll need to wait for another one to be open.


What Is a Good Score on the USPS Assessment Test?

The passing score for any of the four Postal Exams is 70, and any score above that is considered good. If you see an ineligible status instead of a score, this means you haven't managed to reach the minimum score of 70. In this case, you'll only get a second chance to retake the exam after one year.

What Happens After You Pass the Postal Exam?

The USPS ranks the candidates who passed the Postal exams by their test scores (after the initial arrangement of the exam submission time). Thus, candidates with higher scores tend to get invitations for interviews faster than those who passed with lower scores.

If you got a 70+ score but wish to improve it, it's also possible.

But here's the thing:

You'll have to wait two whole years before you get another shot! So, aiming to score as high as possible should be your first priority.

Now, let's go over each Postal Exam in detail:

Virtual Entry Assessment MC (474)

The Postal Exam 474, also called the Virtual Entry Assessment – MC (474), is used for evaluating candidates applying for both city and rural mail carrier positions. As of November 2021, one new section was added to the Postal Exam 474: What Drives You.

Here’s an overview of the Virtual Entry Assessment – MC (474) structure:

Section Name Number of Questions
Work Scenarios (Situational Judgment Test) 18
Describe Your Approach (Personality Test) 139
Tell Us Your Story (Biodata Questionnaire) 37
What Drives You (Motivation Questionnaire) 25
In Total: 247

To try sample questions, get practice tips, and access the full preparation pack for the 474 exam, visit our in-depth prep guide.

Virtual Entry Assessment MH 475

The Virtual Entry Assessment MH 475 is an exam that anyone who wishes to become a USPS Mail Handler or Mail Handler Assistant has to pass. The test is one of the four new assessments the USPS uses since April 2019, following the retirement of the old 473 exam.

The Postal Exam 475 consists of six sections (two of them are new from late 2021). Here’s a breakdown of them:

Section Name

Number of Questions

Work Scenarios

Check for Errors 3
Move the Mail 18
What Drives You 25
Tell Us Your Story 40
Describe Your Approach 139

Go to our 475 exam prep guide for realistic practice questions, inside tips, and the full prep course for the exam.

Virtual Entry Assessment – MP (476)

The USPS Virtual Entry Assessment 476 (MP 476) is used in the screening process for many roles including those for Mail Processing Clerk, PSE Mail Processing Clerk, Casual Mail Processing Clerk, Data Conversion Operator, PSE Data Conversion Operator, and Casual Data Conversion Operator.

This online exam includes seven sections (three of them emerged only in late 2021):

Section Name

Number of Questions

Work Scenarios

Check for Errors 3
Tell Us Your Story 18
Describe Your Approach 25
Verify Customer Information 10
Move the Mail 40
What Drives You 139

For realistic sample questions and a complete online prep course for the 476 exam, visit our dedicated practice guide.

Virtual Entry Assessment – CS (477)

The Virtual Entry Assessment (VEA) 477 is used to evaluate candidates applying to Customer Service Clerk jobs in the USPS. The exam takes approximately 75 minutes to complete and you can use a calculator and scratch paper while answering some of the questions.

The purpose of the Postal Exam 477 is to learn more about you, how you interact with other people (especially customers), your working style, your previous work experience, and your basic math skills.

It includes seven sections, three of them were added only in late 2021:

Section Name Number of Questions
Work Situations 22
Work Your Register 3
Tell Us Your Story 39
Describe Your Approach 139
Help Your Customers 14
Verify Customer Information 10
What Drives You 25

Visit our 477 exam prep guide for sample questions from the exam and to access the full 477 assessment practice pack.

How to Study for and Pass the Postal Exam?

The best way to prepare for and pass the Postal Service Exam is by learning how to answer the exact same question types that appear on the real test. As the postal exams include unusual questions that evaluate different skills and parts of your personality, it's crucial to know what is the best way to answer them.

JobTestPrep's experts have created a tailored practice pack that covers each of the actual exam's sections, which is exclusive to this site.

The prep pack will help you achieve 3 things:

  1. You'll learn how to approach every USPS question type and what are the best techniques to answer them.
  2. You'll get a feel for the real testing experience with full-length USPS practice tests.
  3. You'll receive foolproof tips and hacks for answering personality and behavioral questions.

About the Author:


Arbel is JobTestPrep's United States Postal Service exam specialist. He has over 15 years' experience working as a psychometric test instructor and has led JobTestPrep's efforts to provide thousands of USPS test-takers with the most accurate online prep possible since 2017. You can contact him at

Read more about Arbel's courses.


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