How to Retake the GED

It is not uncommon for GED candidates to fail one or more sections the first they take the exam. If you need to retake part of the GED test to earn a passing score, don't feel ashamed. The GED test is designed to be as challenging as high school curriculum. Only the top 60% of graduating high school seniors can pass it, according to the GED test developers.

Before you register to retake one or more sections of the GED, understand the restrictions on retesting, and follow this guide to get the most out of your study time.

First, understand the minimum score requirements for the exam. Each of the 5 sections is scored on a scale of 200 to 800. You need a minimum score of 410 on each section, and a composite (total) score of at least 2250. This means you need to score an average of 450 on each section. If you achieve only the minimum 410 on each section, you won't pass because your composite won't be high enough.

Next, figure out which sections you need to retake, and what minimum score you need on each section. Here are some examples to help you:

Example 1: Suppose your five GED scores are 400, 410, 450, 500, and 500. Even though your total score is 2260--10 points above the minimum level of 2250--you still didn't pass because you received a score lower than 410 on the first section. You must retake the fist section.

Example 2: Suppose your GED scores are 420, 420, 430, 430, and 440. Even though your sub-scores are each above 410, you still didn't pass the GED because your total score is only 2140. You need to gain a total of 110 more points in order to pass. You must retake one or more sections of the GED to gain 110 points. Retake the sections you know you can improve on.

Improve your study habits before you retake the GED. If you were studying on your own and had trouble staying focused and motivated, consider taking a GED class offered by your city or county adult education service.

Check that your study materials are adequate. If you studied with out-dated material, and found the actual GED test to be much harder, purchase the current editions of the official study guides.

Know the restrictions on retesting. For each content area of the GED, you can only test at most three times per year. In some jurisdictions, you may need to wait a minimum of 30 days between testing. Call your GED testing office to get the exact details.

There is no maximum waiting period between GED retakes. You can retake the test a year later if you so choose. However, the GED will be revised beginning 2012, so if you need to retake one or more sections, you must do so (and pass) before December 31, 2011. Otherwise, you must retake the entire GED test.

© Had2Know 2010

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