Big changes on the way for GED test - | WBTV Charlotte

Big changes on the way for GED test


Rowan-Cabarrus Community College has announced that the current version of the GED test will expire at the end of 2013. The current version, known as the 2002 Series GED test, will be replaced with the new 2014 GED test on January 2, 2014.

Last year, nearly 800,000 adults sat for the GED test, which is accepted by nearly all U.S. colleges and employers. The revisions were spearheaded by the American Council on Education, creator of the GED, in conjunction with private test-maker Pearson. The two companies have merged which helped to create the revenue and resources to revamp the test.

Those who have taken the GED test since 2002, but not passed all five parts, have until the end of 2013 to pass, or they will need to start over again in 2014 with the new GED test in order to receive their high school equivalency credential.

"The GED test opens the door to college and better jobs. It gives the graduate the respect they deserve, and the satisfaction of earning a high school credential with the hope that they will continue with their education," said Gary Connor, director of the college's GED and Adult Basic Education programs. "We want to be sure that everyone is aware of this deadline. GED test-takers must act now to finish and pass before the current test expires."

According to the GED Testing Service, more than a million Americans have started, but not completed the current GED test.

"Support is available right here in Rowan and Cabarrus counties," said Connor. "We're here to help you. We can help you get prepared to take the parts of the GED test you still need to pass. Even with your busy schedule, you can prepare, plan, and succeed at taking the GED test!"

Although the deadline is still a year away, officials are urging anyone working on their GED to be aware that major changes are coming.

"My first job was as a GED instructor and I know first-hand how important a GED is for a person's future," said Dr. Carol S. Spalding, president of Rowan-Cabarrus. "Today's unemployment rates are evidence that without a high school diploma or a GED, future salary is limited to near poverty levels. By all means, use 2013 to complete your high school equivalent education so you can better prepare the years ahead. Encourage anyone you know to do the same. Rowan-Cabarrus is ready to help."

"We offer classes online, at various community locations and on campus, so anyone interested in earning a GED can walk in the door and get started," said Connor.

Students work at their own pace, so the time to complete a section of the GED may take weeks or months based upon the individual.

"We are committed to helping the people of Rowan and Cabarrus counties gain the skills they need to become employable," said Spalding. "In addition to free GED classes, we also offer free classes that prepare them to take the WorkKeys assessment to earn the nationally recognized Career Readiness Certificate (CRC). Armed with these two credentials, their chances for employment are greatly improved."

The new 2014 GED test will be based on emerging national and state standards. The test will offer dual performance levels where test-takers can earn the high school equivalency credential as well as an additional endorsement that indicates career- and college-readiness. The test will be delivered solely on computer and offered only in official testing centers. Additionally, the cost of testing is expected to increase from its current fee of $25.

"I strongly urge anyone who has started the GED program since 2002 but had to ‘stop out' for whatever reason, to come back and finish before the end of 2013. After that, any student who had not successfully completed all five exams will be required to retake any exams that they had already passed," said Connor.

"We also expect that the national GED provider will increase the cost of testing substantially,"

said Connor. "Right now, there are a total of five tests: reading, science, social studies, math, and writing. The new GED testing will have four tests: reasoning through language arts, math, science, and social studies."

"Many people have been led to believe that they can go online and get their GED, but it is not possible. You have to test in a certified testing center in order to obtain an official GED," Connor said. "GED is trademarked and is considered a high school equivalency. It's being revamped to reflect what's happening in high school."

Connor said the new GED tests will be filled with complex content based on the common core state standards to meet high school performance standards, along with other benchmarks representing college readiness.

"Our GED graduates are not just improving their lives; they are improving those of their families and communities," said Carl M. Short, chair of the Rowan-Cabarrus Community College Board of Trustees. "If you don't have a high school diploma, I urge you to contact Rowan-Cabarrus today."

Rowan-Cabarrus Community College offers free GED classes in the morning, afternoon and evening most days of the week. Please contact Gary Connor for more information at or 704-216-3723.

"For anyone who has already started the GED test – your future is calling. By passing the GED test, you can answer that call," said Randy Trask, president and CEO of GED Testing Service. "You owe it to yourself. Don't miss the chance to turn one small step into your next big opportunity in life."

The GED test has opened doors to better jobs and college programs for more than 18 million graduates since 1942. For more information about Rowan-Cabarrus Community College, please visit or call 704-216-RCCC (7222). The college is currently registering students for spring classes.

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