About Taking the GED Test

The GED Test (General Educational Development Test) is an exam that adults can take in lieu of graduating from high school. Passing the GED certifies that you have mastered material learned in high schoool. The GED exam is often called the "General Equivalency Diploma" for this reason, however, this is not the official name of the test.

The GED exam is administered by the American Council on Education (ACE). The test must be taken at an official testing location in your county or city. The GED is a timed, paper-and-pencil based test that cannot be completed online. The cost varies by location, and many test takers are eligible for fee waivers. If you believe that you were scammed by an company that offered you an "online GED," you should contact ACE. If you are interested in taking the GED, take these steps to get started.

First, take a full-length practice GED to gauge how much time you need to study for the real exam. To pass the GED test, your score must be above the 40th percentile of typical high school seniors. You must show that you are at least as knowledgeable as the bottom 40% of high school seniors.

Visit the website of the American Council on Education to find the testing center nearest to you. Before you schedule the GED, call the local testing center to confirm their hours, location, fee (if any), and what identification documents you need to bring on test day. Some local testing centers offer testing at smaller satellite branches, not listed on the website, that may be even closer to your home.

Between registering for the GED and taking the GED, you should come up with a study schedule. If you have trouble studying on your own with GED workbooks and practice tests, consider taking a GED class at your local adult education center.

There are 5 sections of the GED, and each is scored on a scale of 200 to 800. Most jurisdictions require that you earn a score of at least 410 on each section (the median is 500) and that your total score (the sum of the 5 sections) be at least 2250.

If you do not earn a passing score on one or more GED sections the first time you take the test, you can retake those sections at a later date. You will not be required to retake the entire exam. There are restrictions on how many times you can retake the GED, so prepare carefully the first time around.

When you recieve your GED scores, you can send them to colleges and universities that you apply to. You can also state your scores on your resume and job applications instead of listing a high school GPA. GED scores cannot be converted to a GPA, but they are given percentile rankings so that colleges and employers can compare your high school performance to other candidates.

© Had2Know 2010

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