I Took the GED® Test…How Can I Get College Credit?

In January 2016, the GED Test changed its scores from pass/fail, to three different levels:

GED Performance Levels
Source: GED Testing Service
  • 175 College Ready + Credit
  • 165 College Ready
  • 145 Pass: High School Equivalency

Find more details in the Quick (Unofficial) 2017 GED® Test Update: Only available until June 30, 2017!

The new GED College Ready Plus Credit is a recommendation for colleges & universities to accept a GED Test Taker’s score to count towards college credit.

What does that mean?

If you do well enough on the GED Test, you can save yourself time & money by starting in higher level classes. Skip Math 101 for a more interesting statistics class, for example. GED Test scores can equal up to 10 college credits…that’s almost one entire semester!

But you can’t skip a class everywhere you apply. GED Test Takers who want to make the most of their high scores may want to look closely at where they apply to college.

To find out if your GED College Ready + Credit Scores are worth $$$:

  1. Start by checking if your nearby college or university is part of the ACE Credit College & University Network. I sorted this list by state so I could easily scan which Ohio institutions are on the list. In some cases, I see two branches of Kent State University, but not the branch nearest me. Hmm…
  2. Next, contact the Admissions department. Ask if they accept College Ready + Credit. Even colleges within the network can determine whether or not to accept certain types of credit.
  3. Even after contacting the Admissions department, they will likely give you the name of the department head, or someone else who will have to approve your application to transfer credit. If the answer is yes, then ask for the forms. If the answer is no…

This is when you change from a prospective student to an advocate.

So for example, maybe Youngstown State University’s English department is okay with giving 1 credit for Reasoning through Language Arts, but the History department has not made a decision about the Social Studies credit. Each department or dean the right to make their own decision (more about the process).

However, in many cases, a department chair may have no clue that the GED College Ready Plus Credit even exists, or what it means.

If they say “no,” or they haven’t heard of it, this is your chance to teach them!

  • If you are a test taker, explain how hard you studied, the skills you learned, and more.
  • If you are a teacher, share the Performance Level Descriptors, and a press release from GED Test Service about the new passing level.

Want more details on cool new tips and tools for GED® Test preparation?

Learn More

GED® Test Prep Resources

Smiling girl in graduation cap
Graduation Girl by flickr user BdwayDiva1

Thanks for coming! I am Meagen Farrell, author of Teaching Adults: A GED® Test Resource Book avaiTeaching Adults GEDlable from New Readers Press, and previously National Teacher Trainer for GED Academy (among other products offered by Essential Education).

Looking to pass the GED® Test, or to help someone study?

You’ve come to the right place! Below you will find a collection of resources for anyone, anywhere to study for the GED® Test*. In addition, many states offer the HiSET Exam or the TASC Test to earn a High School Equivalency Diploma.

Warning: Many sites are free because of advertisements.  Don’t click on the ads!!!

Other sites give free trials to sell their paid services. Ask yourself: is it worth it to pay for this?

Check out my latest post with updated links:

Top 30 FREE Websites for GED® Test Prep and Workforce Development

Helpful Links

[Note: these links were good as of October 18, 2016. If you find any broken links, please comment or contact me to let me know. If you are a long-term follower, this post serves to archive the content on the previous page “GED Test Prep.”

I am moving on to become Director of Religious Education at a church in Northeast Ohio. Follow my blog for updates, teacher resources, and spiritual reflections.]

*GED® is a registered trademark of the American Council on Education (ACE) and administered exclusively by GED® Testing Service LLC under license. Any content on this website is not endorsed or approved by ACE or GED Testing Service.

As Promised: Quick (Unofficial) 2017 GED® Test Update

Hi friends! I had a lot of fun last week at The Literacy Cooperative’s training “2017 GED® Test Update” in Independence, Ohio. Teachers shared about their program’s practices, challenges, and had lots of hands-on exploration with free online resources.

As promised, I am making the workshop content available online for those who couldn’t make the session in person!

Check out Quick (Unofficial) 2017 GED Test Update today

Save yourself the time searching and sorting and spend more time exploring! Check out my curated list of the BEST resources that GED® Test Prep instructors NEED TO KNOW for 2017.

For just $5, access my recommendations and descriptions with links. Post in the comments section to network and share ideas. Discuss the landscape of College Ready Plus Credit and WIOA. Strategize to become an advocate for GED® Test prep students and passers in your region.

Join now!

GED® is a registered trademark of the American Council on Education (ACE) and administered exclusively by GED Testing Service LLC under license. Any content on this website is not endorsed or approved by these trademark holders.

COMING SOON!

In addition to the planned workshop content, participants also had a lot of questions about the upcoming changes here in Ohio.  The state is taking steps to evaluate adding the HiSET and TASC Tests as options to earn a high school equivalency diploma. While I gave folks in the session a quick overview of the alternatives, this topic deserves its own full workshop.

I have already helped programs in states like Texas, New Jersey, and California navigate the territory of multiple High School Equivalency exams and options. Once we get an announcement from the state of Ohio, I will be providing a FREE live workshop through The Literacy Cooperative. Look for that date and get your questions answered on whichever HSE test option(s) the state decides.

The Story of the 2016 GED Testing Service Conference

[Looking for my series on the Hough neighborhood of Cleveland? It continues later this week, once I’ve caught up after traveling]

Couldn’t make it to Alexandria, Virginia last week? Not to fear! I took my notes on Twitter and so did a bunch of other folks using the hashtags #GEDTS16 and #LearnLeadInspire.

Not on Twitter? Not to fear! I consolidated the tweets into a Story, so you can get the highlights, videos, and tips right here!

The theme was well chosen, because we certainly left inspired! Motivational speaker Mark Anthony Garrett, also a GED graduate, reminded us of the importance of teaching our students that they can be significant. Watch this and grab a tissue!

I was also on the edge of my seat during the GED Awards, particularly the student stories. GEDWorks also had some stories to tell, like Sara, a Taco Bell employee and GED graduate:

Equally important, we learned critical tips in the sessions. For the first time, frontline educators were invited to the conference, and showed up in droves! With the implementation of WIOA legislation, career pathways were a hot topic.

The biggest throw down was definitely Friday morning with the unveiling of GEDWorks. There have been rumors and headlines around this new partnership between GED Testing Service and employers like WalMart, but we got the full outline for the first time. Nick Laul called it a “game changer initiative.” While it is still getting on its feet, it seems to have a ton of potential.

The biggest benefit for employers and test takers is the connection between work and education. We know that outcomes increase when employment and literacy go hand-in-hand, when students have a clear goal and chance for advancement through training. That’s good for everyone!

A huge thing GEDWorks will do for the GED Testing Service is allow participants to take the GED Test even in states that do not issue a credential for the exam. In states where there are multiple test options, it will provide an incentive for participants to choose the GED exam. It’s easy to see why GEDTS wants to invest in these partnerships in a competitive assessment environment.

The best part of conferences for me are the connections and in-between conversations. In particular, I met and reconnected with lots of DC-area educators including Academy of Hope, international partners who will be updating from the 2002 series to the 2014 series soon, and also the GED Testing Service legal team, who did not consent to have their pictures on social media!

Friends, for you: “Raise a glass to [education] / Something they can never take away / No matter what they tell you. / Raise a glass to the 4 [hundred] of us. / [Next year] they’ll be more of us. / Telling the story of tonight.”

COABE Presentations on the Repository!

Well, friends, I haven’t been posting on my blog this week because I wasScreenshot_2016-04-16-20-53-30 plugged in to the COABE app. I even made it to the leaderboard on the COABE App! I usually hovered around #15, but finally captured a screenshot at #18…barely hanging on to my spot in the top 20.

It provides the option to send posts to Twitter, so I recommend following the conference at the hashtag #COABE16, if you aren’t already. There seemed to be some folks on the app but not Twitter, and others posting to Twitter but not the app. Best to just be multi-channel and get a bit of everything!

Equally important as having a social media presence, I avoided producing a ton of copies by posting my presentations to the COABE Adult Education Repository. I am all about saving some trees! Here are the slides.

When Worlds Collide: Blended Learning for 2016

How can you prepare your students and program for computer literacy, critical thinking, and the high school equivalency (HSE) exams all at the same time? Do you feel you could get more value out of your investment in technology and computer-based curricula? Join two blended learning specialists from Essential Education for examples of how adult education programs have successfully used blended learning in their classrooms. We will use algebra lessons as a model to transform existing adult education classes into blended learning. Come to get your questions answered, share your successes, and make technology work for you.

Bigger, Better Writing: Using Rubrics & Samples to Improve Instruction

No matter what you are teaching, we have a writing sample for you! Learn how to use rubrics to help your GED, TASC, HiSET, ABE and ESOL students improve their writing skills and scores. Two members of the Essential Education design team will explain the process we use to develop our proprietary rubrics. Participants will break into small groups to practice using a rubric to grade writing samples. Everyone will leave with useful strategies and free teaching tools. Identify the skills your students need to become excellent writers and meet their educational goals!

5 Minute HSE Update: Major Test Changes

It’s 2016, and the world of adult education continues to fluctuate! Obtaining a High School Equivalency (HSE) diploma is the goal of most adult education students. But what does it really take to earn that credential?

Starting in 2014, the GED Test changed significantly to align with the Common Core standards and skills of high school graduates. We now have two additional HSE exams–TASC and HiSET–which are changing each year to gradually become more computer-based and aligned to the Common Core standards.

So in five minutes or less, what are the key things you need to know about recent test changes as of January 2016?

HiSET Exam

I’ll start with HiSET because their content change is perhaps the most drastic. The HiSET Language Arts, Writing Essay is keeping its 6-point scoring, but changing the prompts and rubric. Test takers are now required to read TWO passages on a topic, and use evidence from both sources to create an argumentative essay.

With this change, all three HSE Tests now require that test takers correctly use evidence from a given passage to support an argument. Regardless of the test(s) available in your state, prospective test takers and adult educators need to focus on developing these skills.

TASC Test

This exam underwent two notable recent changes:

  1. In 2015, CTB (the company that produces TASC) switched hands from McGraw Hill to Data Recognition Company (DRG). The switch resulted in staff changes, contract changes at the state level, changes for testing centers…all things that impact where and when test takers can access the exam. As more states add multiple tests, this actually may result in more people taking the TASC test.
  2. In 2016, TASC introduced short answer items. The Language Arts, Writing Part 1 exam now includes short answer responses that ask the test taker to do one of two things:
    1. Combine two sentences into one new sentence.
    2. Write an appropriate concluding sentence for a paragraph.

 

GED Test

I saved the largest HSE Test for last because this is actually a recent announcement of a future change. Starting March 1, GED Testing Service is changing its cut scores. Depending on each state, this may result in 25,000-30,000 previous GED Test Takers who scored between 145-149 to earn their HSE diploma! Read full details at Education Week.

This graphic sums up the changes nicely:

GED Performance Levels

 

St Noel’s Tutor Training

Our activity will use a sampler of the Essential Math Skills workbook.

The Surfoid: Making Geometric Solids Fun

Sometimes I use my job as a Mom as an excuse to test out adult education lessons. Recently I bought some geometric solids made for a Montessori lesson. This lesson is intended to be taught to 3-6 year olds, but adult students can benefit from a refresher on the names of these objects. And I ended up learning something really important about math in the process.

image

I love the Montessori method for hands-on learning, because it focuses on putting stuff in front of someone, then explaining what it’s called and what it can do. The introduction is a structured presentation, but then you let kids do what they naturally do: play with stuff. Montessori purists will call this a child’s “work.”

My well-planned idea went out the window when the box arrived. Before I could practice my presentation, my kids wanted to help take everything out. Then they started stacking the blocks and turning them into castles and guns while I struggled to remember the difference between the two egg-shaped pieces. My kids started to debate which one looked like a potato and which one was an egg. While I quickly re-read the Montessori Geometric Solids presentation, they organized the pieces into stacks with the same bases. All the triangles were stacked, the squares were stacked, and the circles were stacked.

I started by asking what makes certain blocks easier to stack on each other. The answer is that they have similar shapes on the bottom, called the base. I asked them to trace a base on paper to see that the shapes are the same. Then they wanted to cut them out, just for an excuse to use scissors.

image

Next I asked how many names of the shapes they already knew, and we discussed some new words. This is where things got really interesting, because again the kids started to see patterns before I even mentioned it. I drew an oval to show that the shape that looks like an oval is an ovoid. A shape that looks like an ellipse is an ellipsoid. We still couldn’t agree which was the potato or the egg.

Then my son drew a surf board. “And a surfoid!” my five-year-old proclaimed.

Sure! Surfoid. Why not?

image

This is where math can get really fun. Though Montessori’s methods are a century old, they have a lot of parallels with Common Core Math that parents are complaining about (another reason we hate it might be because over 55% of adults in the U.S. can’t do 4th grade level math). Why is this so different than the math most U.S. adults learned growing up?

Math like this shows us that geometry is just a way to describe the world around us. Instead of providing abstract equations to memorize with one right or wrong answer, we learn how to recognize patterns and use tools to manipulate our world using words and numbers. And when we learn to use mathematical tools instead of memorize equations, that’s when we learn how to create surfoids. That’s when math becomes play.

Missed COABE? Learn how to Crack the Code of Social Studies

Yesterday, I had the chance to repeat a shorter version of my COABE session on the GED Social Studies Extended Response as the monthly webinar for Tuesdays with Essential Education. And we recorded it this time!

In both sessions, I focused on enduring issues as a way to engage students in the Great Conversation. Enduring issues are questions that societies have to answer over and over again, and may be particular questions that are the focus of social discussion. Having a voice in that conversation is civic participation, which is one of the most important goals of our civics and social studies curricula.

You can watch the entire video (about 50 minutes). Here is my section of slides to view or download:

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