Starting in 2014, the GED Testing Service began rolling out a brand new version of their test in about 40 states. Soon, the computerized format will be the only option for test-takers. There are a lot of changes that accompany this switch, and its best to understand them before you take your GED test. Depending on your experience with computers and test-taking, there are some things you should prepare for before the day of the test.
Pros of Computer Format GED
- Easier to Register
With the adoption of the computer format, the GED Testing Service has changed their registration procedures to make it easier than ever for applicants to find a test date. Registration can be completed at any hour of the day from the convenience of your home or wherever an internet connection is available. The online application allows for much more flexibility and ease of scheduling.
- On-screen Calculator
One benefit that levels the playing field for all test-takers is the new on-screen calculator. Because every test-taker is to use the same type of computer, they will also be provided with the same applications while taking the test. The calculator helps students that do not have advanced calculators, though most of the mathematical operations do not require high-tech computations to solve.
- More Available Testing Centers
Now that the test is computerized, there is a wider range of testing facilities. Most types of technology centers that host computer services are able to offer the GED test, though only select businesses cater to the GED Testing Service. Previously, students had fewer options for testing because the material costs of providing the GED exam limited the number of centers willing to offer it.
- Faster Test Results
You will know your test results much faster than before, thanks to the convenience and speed of computerized test results. Instead of weeks of processing, the computer you use will be able to score your results immediately. This does not apply to some subjects, such as the written sections, which require a subjective reader to be evaluated.
Cons of Computer Format GED
- Requires Keyboard Skills
If you are unfamiliar with a computer, you will struggle more under the timed pressure of the GED test. Essays must be typed, so typing skills with the keyboard must be at a minimum level of competency. Students can take free adult education classes to get familiar with the computer and the testing procedure it requires.
- Not Available in All States
There are about 7-10 states that have not approved the new version of the GED test. This means that test-takers in these states must stick with the traditional paper-and-pencil test. This is not necessarily a problem with the computer format, but those students that are interested in using a computer for their test must travel to another state that offers the computer form of testing and allows out-of-state test-takers to take the GED.