Ged Diplomas

Written by Ingrid Chen
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The GED (General Educational Development) test was established during World War II to provide war veterans with a means of completing school. Many young soldiers left high school early to serve in the military, and as a result missed the last, most crucial years of secondary education. GED tests have since been the standard in diploma equivalency.

What Topics Are Covered in the GED Test?

Though the general subjects have remained the same or very similar over its lifespan, the GED has been consistently modified to meet the needs of present society. There are five main subjects that have remained similar to the topics of the first tests in the 1940s: reading, writing, math, science and social studies. Its most recent reconstruction in 2002 turned the focus of the tests largely towards business-based topics.

For example, the writing portion of the exams is partially based on the development of coherent memos and effective cover letters for resumes. The reading portion examines, in part, interpretation of business documents such as work policies. The topics not based in language arts generally require more research than practice. Though these tests are based on high school topics, the tests have been configured so as to make them more accessible to those who have been out of school for quite some time.

How is this possible? Surprisingly, some of the science, math and social studies subtopics are based on common knowledge, everyday events and life experiences. The point is not just to memorize facts; the tests are configured to assess interpretation of the facts and use them in real-life situations. The idea behind this format is so that those who wish to receive a GED can actually apply their knowledge to their occupations, which is the main reason why individuals obtain GEDs.

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