RAF Selection Process: The Complete Guide


In order to join the RAF, there are 7 steps that you will need to go through in order to complete your application. You will need to pass each stage of the application process, before you can progress to the next stage. Below, we have broken down the 7 step RAF selection process, for both full-time regulars, and for spare time reserves.

Full Time Regular RAF Selection Process

  • Aptitude Tests
  • Selection Interviews
  • Health Assessments.
  • Fitness Tests
  • Pre-recruit training course.
  • Acceptance.
  • Training.

Part Time Reserve RAF Selection Process

  • Squadron Information Day.raf selection process
  • Aptitude Tests
  • Selection Interviews
  • Acceptance.
  • Health Assessments.
  • Fitness Tests
  • Training.

Squadron Information Day

If you apply to join the RAF as a reserve, you will need to undergo a squadron information day. This will give you the opportunity to attend a squadron of your choice, and ask any questions that you might have regarding the RAF selection process and how to join.

During your squadron information day, you will get to witness what life is like as an RAF Reserve, and learn about the role that you are interested in.

Remember – this stage is only for reserves!

Aptitude Tests

Following your application form, the first step is to complete a series of aptitude tests. The nature of these will depend upon the role that you are applying for, but they will generally consist of:

  • Verbal Reasoning Tests (designed to test your interpretation skills)
  • Numerical Reasoning (designed to assess your ability to work with numbers)
  • Work Rate tests (designed to assess your speed and accuracy)
  • Spatial Reasoning (designed to assess your understanding of abstract shapes)
  • Electrical Comprehension (designed to assess your ability to work with electrical concepts)
  • Mechanical Comprehension (designed to assess your ability to work with mechanical concepts)
  • Memory Tests (designed to assess your ability to remember information correctly)

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RAF Selection Process Interviews

If you successfully pass the aptitude tests, you will be invited to take part in the RAF selection process interviews. These interviews are a way for the RAF to get to know you better. During these interviews, you’ll be required to show your skills, experience and suitability for the role.

The RAF selection process interviews are also a great way for you to ask any remaining questions that you might have about joining. Topics covered in the interviews include: family, education, hobbies, work experience, knowledge of the role that you have applied for and knowledge of the RAF as an organisation.

For some roles, you may be required to pass a second interview. You can find out whether you’ll need to take a second interview by reading through the employment literature provided, when you apply for the job.

Health Assessment & Fitness

Following the interviews, all successful candidates must undergo a health assessment to determine whether it is safe for them to work in the RAF. As praf selection process guideart of this assessment, you will be tested on your eyesight, hearing, BMI and other areas.

For more information about the eligibility requirements regarding the health assessment, and RAF careers be sure to check out our video blog on RAF Careers

Next, you’ll need to take a fitness test. This usually consists of a 2.4 kilometre run, push up tests and sit up tests. You will be assessed against your age and your gender.


Pre-Recruit Training Course

raf careersThis takes place over 3 days, and is specifically designed to give candidates a taste of what RAF training is like. During the training course, you’ll need to take the following tests:

  • A functional skills test. This will test your basic ability in areas such as Maths and English. You can download sample papers and practice questions from the RAF website.
  • A fitness test. This is the second part of the fitness assessment, and includes shuttle runs, press ups and sit ups.

Acceptance and Training

If you have successfully passed each of the above-mentioned steps, you will be invited to attend a provisional offer of service interview. This interview is conducted to ensure that you understand the rules, regulations, expectations and conditions of working in the RAF.

Your basic training takes place over a 10 week period. It is designed to show you what the RAF is all about, and demonstrates what you can expect if you are join. This will challenge you both physically and mentally, and determine whether or not you are cut out of the role.

During the RAF selection process training, you will be separated into groups, known as ‘flights’ and will be given a service number. You British Troops Remembering the Fallen in Afghanistanwill then undergo regular inspections, receive lessons in marches, drills and codes of conducts. You will be given the chance to test and apply your skills with different training exercises to embark upon. You will learn to survive and fight in a military environment. You’ll practice weapon fire, camouflage, first aid and nuclear drills, just like in real battle conditions. Once you’ve passed this training, you’ll graduate, and then take further specific role-related training, before becoming a fully registered member of the RAF. Congratulations, and good luck.

For more essential tips on the RAF selection process, including interview advice, selection tests and more, purchase our fantastic guide on How To Join The Royal Air Force!