Address Checking Strategy

Part of the key to answering the Address Checking Section with maximum efficiency and correctness involves understanding how the four options (A: No Error - B: Error in Address Only - C: Error in Zip Code Only - D: Error in Both) affect how you should answer the question. Ideally, you do not want to read an entire address and zip code, and compare it all against the address to be checked.

Instead, break down the comparison into three distinct phases, based on the structure in how the addresses are presented, and the order of the possible answers:

  1. First, check the top line street address. Scan across and check it against the address to be checked. If you see an error, skip the next listed step, because you only need to identify one error in order to know that there is an error in the address portion.
  2. Second, look directly beneath the address to the city and state pairing. Now compare this against the address paired with it. See the difference? By comparing line by line, you've simplified what you have to remember during the comparison!
  3. Third, check the zip code. Same as above, scan across. However, you may want to break this into two separate steps, comparing separately the zip code numbers separated by the hyphen (ie 42231-5323 is a standard zip code for the exam).

Some test takers will try and remember an entire combination of address and zip for each pair. This can be very difficult and lead you to waste too much time rechecking your answers or digesting each individual address. Others may break down the entire address into minute units, with the street name, number, abbreviation, city, state and zip code each representing one unit. This is a better strategy than the holistic approach, however, it suffers from having to scan back and forth between the pairs at least 7 times per question. Since you only have 11 minutes to answer 60 questions, this can hog so much time that you may be unable to finish.

Do NOT Guess on this section.

Because the address checking section penalizes wrong answers, it is not wise to guess. However, do not hover over an answer until you are 200% sure it is correct.

Practice Hard and Often. Watch the Clock

Practice on this section of the exam is especially crucial. Because you are penalized, you ideally want to be able to go over your answers a second time. Therefore, you should be aiming to complete this section in half of the allotted time. The only way to correctly acheive this is to do it at speed.