GED is an abbreviation for General Education Development. It refers to a process of gaining a high school diploma equivalence commonly referred to as a GED credential or certificate. A GED credential is issued to persons who take and pass a GED test. GED tests are offered by the GED testing service. Essentially, GED is designed for persons who do not have a high school diploma. It involves studying and taking several tests to verify a person’s knowledge, aptitude, and skill levels. GED is a set of five tests namely Science, Social Studies, Mathematics, Language Arts in Reading and Language Arts in Writing. Other than English, GED tests may be taken in French, Spanish, Braille, audiocassette and large print. Since the program started in 1943, there are over 17 million persons who have passed the test and earned GED certificates. GED credentials are often given by the territory where one lives e.g. state or province. Most institutions and universities established by the government recognize GED as equivalent to high school diploma in terms of eligibility to programs and as an admission requirement.
Importance of GED
GED gives persons who could not attain a high school diploma for one reason or another opportunity to do so. One must be 16 years old and above to take a GED test. One is not required to sit for all tests at a go; they can be taken over a period of three years. GED enables adults to provide prove of what they know and receive credentials that are recognized nationally. It provides adults with the initial step to a brighter future. Though GED tests are rigorous, candidates are expected to acquire scores of 60% and above in order to graduate as high school seniors. In total, there are an estimated 3500 GED testing centers across the US, Canada and abroad. Over 95 percent of employers, universities and colleges in the US recognize GED credentials. Acquiring GED credentials means possibilities for further training, acquisition of a better job and opportunities for attaining higher education.