General Educational Development or GED for short is the test that is administered to certify that an individual has the necessary academic skills typically attained by completing high school. It is accepted by almost all colleges and companies as an equivalent to a high school diploma. Every year close to a million Americans study for and take the GED Test.
Why Take the GED?
There are many reasons for taking the GED. Two most important reasons that spring to mind immediately are
Better career opportunities – The lack of a high school diploma can be a real hindrance especially when you have more academically suited candidates vying for the same job opportunities. If you did not finish high school and you find yourself with limited options or opportunities then it might make sense to earn your GED.
Financial Aid – Once you complete and earn your GED, you become eligible for all the financial aid as a typical high school graduate. This and the fact that GED is accepted by most colleges should make the decision a no brainer if you have any plans for furthering your education.
GED Test Format
The GED Test is basically 5 subject area tests along with one written essay. This would translate to roughly 240 multiple choice questions and one written essay. You have about 425 minutes to complete the above mentioned tests. Let us look at each of the test in detail
GED Language Arts, Writing, Part 1
A total of 50 questions to be completed in 75 minutes. This test covers areas such as sentence structure, organization, usage and mechanics.
GED Language Arts, Writing, Part 2
This test is the essay that a candidate will have to write in 45 minutes. The essay is mainly to evaluate the candidates ability to explain, clarify and inform. The topic for the essay will be general in nature and will not require any specialized knowledge on the part of the candidate.
GED Language Arts, Reading
The reading test evaluates the candidates reading comprehension ability. You are looking at 40 questions to be completed in 65 minutes. You will be asked to read several passage of text and use your reasoning and referring skills to locate important details in the given passages, understand events and their sequence, make comparisons where required. The reading comprehension test is used to test your skills and ability to analyze, understand, synthesize and apply that information.
GED Social Studies Test
The Social Studies test will have 50 questions to be completed in 70 minutes. The test covers areas such as US History, world history, Civics and Government, economics. The main aim of this test is to measure the candidates understanding of key events and concepts in the above mentioned areas.
GED Science Test
The GED Science test is made up of 50 questions to be answered in 80 minutes. The science test evaluates a candidates grasp and understanding of key concepts in the areas of physical sciences, life sciences, Earth and Space science.
GED Math Test
GED Math has 50 questions again to be answered in 90 minutes. The math test covers and test for basic mathematics knowledge of a typical high school graduate. You can expect to be tested on number sense and number operations, algebra, functions and patterns, geometry and measurement along with statistics, probability and data analysis.
GED Test Scores
Each of the 5 GED tests have a maximum score of 800. So you are looking at a maximum possible score of 4000. The average score is usually around 500 on each test which translates to about 2500 on all 5 tests. Since scoring for the GED is done based on this average, the minimum score to pass the GED is around 450 points.
It is vital to be well prepared before you appear for the GED. It makes sense to prepare judiciously and appear for the GED when you are completely confident. It is prudent to take a lot of practice GED tests, either online or otherwise to get into the mode and habit of test taking.
We plan on writing several articles regarding GED Test strategy, how to prepare for the GED tests along with sample GED tests to help you prepare.