GED refers to General Education Development, which is a series of five tests on a variety of subjects which are designed to test the skills of those who take them to determine whether or not they have a basic knowledge of high school level academics. When a person refers to getting their GED, they really mean that they have passed the necessary tests which serve as proof of their completion. While there is somewhat of a social stigma attached to getting a GED because it is typically people who drop of high school who receive one, it is not always a sign of failure.
There are some who take the GED tests earlier on in order to bypass high school altogether so they can take college-level courses. Other people are forced to leave high school out of family obligations or for financial reasons, but go back to get a GED later through GED classes or other free GED online programs.. A vast majority of colleges and universities across the country accept a GED as a valid form of proof that they possess basic academic skills and therefore qualify for admittance. Many of these educational institutions require an SAT or ACT to be taken before admittance though.
Today there are over 3,000 GED testing centers throughout the U.S and Canada, most of them being community colleges as well as public schools and adult education centers. Despite the development of online courses and testing in academics, GED tests must be done in person. There are some very specific rules and guidelines to these tests which must be followed in order to successfully complete them. Sometimes those who take these tests are granted breaks, depending on the number of tests which are being administered at one time.
The minimum score on a GED test is 200, with the maximum being 800. There are certain places which actually host graduation ceremonies for those who successfully complete their GED tests, though more often than not there is no such ceremony which takes place. The complete battery of tests usually lasts around 7 ½ hours and covers a wide range of topics which span from mathematics to science and language arts/reading. Since the creation of the GED in 1943, there have been over 17 million people who have passed these tests successfully.
Although the GED is considered to be a lesser alternative to a high school diploma, the tests which students are required to pass are rigorous and can be very difficult without the necessary studying and preparation. There are a number of books available for those who wish to prepare for their GED tests. They cover all of the topics that these tests are on, helping those who chose not to go to High School or were not able to for whatever reason to advance their education.
Despite the negative connotation associated with the GED, it is still widely accepted as a high school equivalency with regards to gaining admittance to institutions of higher education as well as jobs which require high school diplomas. Those who wish to find a GED testing center in their area can go online to get this information.