A Complete Guide to the GED Diploma

For 39 million Americans who didn’t graduate high school, a GED certificate is the most reliable way to get on track for college or work. It can also give them a sense of pride and accomplishment.

The GED exam consists of four subjects, each broken down into its test. Test takers can do all the tests simultaneously or spread them out over time for prep and convenience. Let’s explore a complete guide to the GED diploma.

What is the GED?

The GED, or General Educational Development, is a series of tests that allow people without a high school diploma to prove their competence in four subject areas. It was designed after WWII for military personnel who left school to serve their country but needed the credentials to get civilian jobs and pursue further education or training.

The test covers the subjects of math, science, social studies, and reading through literature. Each section has a separate test so that you can take them at a time and at your own pace. The math section includes questions that assess your ability to understand and use the fundamentals of algebra and basic arithmetic skills such as perimeters, circumference, distances, measures of central tendency (mean, median, mode), and cost calculations.

What does a GED diploma look like? The test and diploma are online; most people can complete everything in a few months. Most colleges and employers view the GED as a valid high school diploma, and you can also improve your SAT or ACT scores by pairing it with an excellent GED score.

What is the GED Test?

The GED test comprises four subjects, each broken down into a series of tests. You can take the individual tests at your own pace or do all of them at once.

Math is all about understanding the basic concepts of numbers and how they work together. This includes the addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division of numbers, fractions, and percents. You will also be asked to complete problems using tables and other question formats, such as drag-and-drop or selecting an area.

The Social Studies section of the GED test measures your ability to understand various social studies topics and how they relate to each other in real life. Questions include multiple choice and other questions, including table entry, fill-in-the-blank, drag-and-drop, and selecting an area. You will have 70 minutes to take the entire test, with no breaks provided. You can bring your calculator to these sections, but you can also use the on-screen embedded calculator.

How to Prepare for the GED Test

The GED, or General Educational Development, is a series of four tests to measure an individual’s knowledge in standard high school subjects. It’s available to anyone 16 years of age or older who is not enrolled in a high school and meets specific requirements, including passing a practice test.

If you plan on taking the exam, prepare thoroughly for each of the subject areas it covers. Use GED preparation materials that streamline information to help you focus on the areas of the exam you need most. Make a small daily commitment to study, and work on building your concentration and stamina since the entire test is over seven hours long.

Also, be prepared to spend time on questions you don’t immediately know the answer to; sometimes, the other questions will give you clues. Be sure to listen carefully to the instructions provided by the examiner before each section of the test, too. They will tell you how much time to allocate for each question and what is required to pass.

How to Pass the GED Test

The goal of earning a GED credential can seem overwhelming for many people, but passing the tests and earning this important credential is possible. The key is to study hard and focus on subjects that you know are weak, so you can spend the bulk of your time reviewing these skills.

Make sure you take practice tests and listen carefully to the examiner’s instructions before the test. It would help if you eliminated distractions, ensured you slept well before test day, and ate a nutritious breakfast.

Once you’ve passed all four of the GED tests, you will receive a certificate in the mail from your state agency. This can include an official electronic diploma and a transcript. Some states send these documents via email, while others will require you to complete an official request form or letter and send it in the mail. You may have to wait a while before receiving your diploma and transcript.


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