GED Language Arts – Reading

The Reading section of the GED test can be the most challenging section for test-takers that have been out of school for long periods of time. So many study programs focus on the Reading section skills because they are valuable for every other section of the test as well. The more information you are able to understand and retain from your reading, the better you will do on the GED. There are some specific things to prepare for on the Language Arts section for Reading.

Close Reading

The biggest challenge on the Reading section of the GED is not only understanding the words on the page, but finding the most important information and concepts that those words convey. Close reading is the act of pulling details and specific statements out of a paragraph of text. The types of text that are provided on the GED vary between two basic types: informational workplace related articles and imaginative literature or poetry. 75% of the reading materials are the informational, fact-based blurbs that will relate to workplace concepts and reports. The task of test-takers with these questions is often to analyze the reasoning of a particular paragraph and then to come up with a logical response or explanation. The other 25% of reading materials come from short stories, poetry, and other forms of creative literature. The questions based on these materials will cover the emotional implications and the order of events in a story.

The best way to prepare for this section is to read frequently. Choose materials that you like, but also keep in mind that there will be a time limit on the actual GED test. Using a timer to pressure yourself might help you get a feel for the best ways to read accurately under time constraints.

Accurate Responding

After you’ve closely read a section, your job will be to find the most accurate response to a question about that section. This is the bulk of the critical thinking required for the Language Arts subject of the GED. Fortunately, the Reading test is different than the Writing section even though they are in the same category. On the Reading test, the questions will be primarily short answer and multiple-choice, rather than extended answers like the essays of the Writing test. The types of responses that are needed for the questions are about the main idea of the text, the points of view it contains, and the specific meanings of phrases used in a certain context.

The best way to prepare for this section is to write short responses to the reading you do in preparation for the test. Being able to accurately summarize the main point, characters, events, and concepts in an informational paragraph or story will help you ace this section.

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