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Earning Your GED Before Going to College

Congratulations on making the momentous decision to go back to school and finish what you started years ago. Each year, hundreds of people who never finished high school make the choice to go to college. However, before you can enroll in college and earn a degree, you will need to earn your GED to prove that you indeed have high school-equivalent skills.

The GED, also known as the General Educational Development exam, is designed to evaluate whether the test-taker has skills and knowledge equivalent to those of a regular high school graduate. The certificate for successfully completing the GED acts as a replacement for a traditional high school diploma. Those who dropped out of high school years ago typically need to earn a GED if they wish to go to college or hold certain jobs with educational requirements. This is because after students reach 21 years of age, they can no longer enroll as students in high school, meaning that they can no longer be eligible to earn a traditional high school diploma. However, GEDs are suitable replacements because the majority of employers and colleges recognize GEDs are diploma equivalents.

The entire GED examination takes a whopping seven hours to finish, though the test can be broken up into two separate days, depending on the testing facility. Those interested in earning a GED will need to check with the testing facility to see if they can take the test in the two days rather than one. It also is only available to take in-person, so do not trust any website that claims that you will be able to complete your GED examination online.

You will need to study for the exam, especially if you have been out of school for a long time. You may find that you have forgotten many subject materials, so invest in a GED study guide or book to help you understand the materials and take a few sample tests. This will help you to become familiar with the test format as well as problem types. Studying for the GED should come well in advance of taking the actual examination. Do not rely on cramming to study – there is a lot of information on that examination that you will need to grasp before test day and it is unlikely that you will learn it all well with a single all-night study session. After you successfully complete the GED, you will be able to pursue a higher education and likely, a higher-paying job.

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