What does a GED do?

The General Educational Development (GED) test is an alternative to a high school diploma for individuals who did not complete their high school education. The GED tests the knowledge and skills that are acquired through …

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The General Educational Development (GED) test is an alternative to a high school diploma for individuals who did not complete their high school education. The GED tests the knowledge and skills that are acquired through four years of high school, including reading, writing, math, science, and social studies. The GED is recognized in all 50 states and Canada as the equivalent of a high school diploma.

The GED was created in the 1940s to help World War II veterans who didn’t finish high school to re-enter the workforce. Today, the GED serves a broader purpose of providing educational opportunities to individuals who may have dropped out of high school for a variety of reasons, such as financial hardship, personal issues, or lack of interest.

The GED test is designed to measure an individual’s proficiency in key academic areas and to demonstrate that they have the same knowledge and skills as a high school graduate. It is accepted by employers and colleges as evidence of an individual’s educational attainment, making it an important credential for those who want to advance their careers or pursue further education. In the next sections, we will explore the benefits of earning a GED in more detail.

Benefits of Earning a GED

Earning a General Educational Development (GED) certificate can have numerous benefits for individuals who do not have a high school diploma. Some of the key benefits of earning a GED include:

  1. Career Advancement: A GED certificate can open up new career opportunities and help individuals advance in their current careers.
  2. Higher Earnings: Individuals with a GED certificate typically earn more than those without a high school diploma.
  3. Post-Secondary Education: A GED certificate can serve as a pathway to post-secondary education, including community college or a trade school.
  4. Personal Achievement: Earning a GED can provide individuals with a sense of personal achievement and self-worth.
  5. Access to Military and Government Jobs: A GED certificate is often a requirement for military service and many government jobs.

Overall, earning a GED can have a significant impact on an individual’s personal and professional life, providing them with opportunities for advancement, higher earnings, and personal fulfillment.

GED Requirements

To earn a GED certificate, individuals must meet certain requirements. The requirements vary by state, but in general, individuals must:

  1. Be at least 16 years old (in most states) and not enrolled in high school.
  2. Pass the GED Test: The GED test consists of four sections: Reasoning through Language Arts, Mathematical Reasoning, Science, and Social Studies. Each section must be passed with a minimum score of 145 to earn a GED certificate.
  3. Meet State Residency Requirements: Most states require individuals to be residents of the state in order to take the GED test.
  4. Pay the Required Fees: The cost to take the GED test varies by state, but in general, individuals can expect to pay between $20 and $150 per test.
  5. Pass Background Checks: In some states, individuals may be required to pass a criminal background check before taking the GED test.

It is important to note that each state has its own specific requirements for earning a GED certificate, and individuals should check with their state’s department of education or GED testing center for more information.

Career and Educational Opportunities with a GED

A GED can open up a variety of career and educational opportunities for individuals who obtain it. Here are some of the ways in which having a GED can benefit you:

  1. Higher Earning Potential: Individuals with a GED typically earn more money than those without a high school diploma. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median weekly earnings for workers with a high school diploma in 2020 was $746, while the median for those without a diploma was $592. Having a GED can help increase your earning potential and lead to better job opportunities.
  2. College and Career Readiness: A GED is recognized by colleges and universities as equivalent to a high school diploma. This means that individuals with a GED can apply to college, vocational schools, and training programs just like high school graduates can. Additionally, having a GED demonstrates that you have the skills and knowledge needed to be successful in college or career training.
  3. Job Opportunities: Many employers require a high school diploma or equivalent for job applicants. By obtaining a GED, you become eligible for jobs that require a high school diploma or equivalent, which can increase your job prospects.
  4. Personal Satisfaction: Earning a GED can give individuals a sense of accomplishment and self-esteem. It can also lead to greater confidence and a willingness to pursue other educational or career goals.

In summary, obtaining a GED can provide individuals with a variety of benefits, including higher earning potential, college and career readiness, increased job opportunities, and personal satisfaction.