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Top Five Ways to Get Your GED

Hi- I am the mother of a two year old, I’m 25, and I want to make a better life for myself with a different job. I was wondering if you could tell me what to do to get my GED. Is getting my GED a good place to start my career planning? Thanks, Jean

Ged General Educational Development General Equivalency Diploma

Dear Jean,

It’s wonderful that you want to take the next step in your career development by getting the GED. You are correct in your thinking that for someone who has not completed high school, taking and passing the GED can open up new opportunities in the job world, as well as give you the necessary background to apply for further education.

The GED is a high school equivalency, and it has been developed and is administered by the American Council on Education.

Career Planning: Important steps to move forward in your journey:

1) Look through the website for the American Council on Education. Their site is the official one for anyone planning to take this test and it is chocked full of good information ranging from where to take a test to how to best prepare yourself. Getting to know this site is a good place to start your career planning.

2) Locate a testing center and time that you think will work for you. There is a place on the website that will allow you to put in your zip code and find out where in your state you can take the test. Every state has some locations. The site will also give you information on a state GED preparation representative.

3) Gather supportive people in your life. With a two year old and a job, you sound like a busy woman! But you will need time to prepare yourself for the test as well. If you still have a relationship with your high school guidance counselor, or you know the local guidance counselor, you might be able to get some tips on how to best prepare.

If you have a disability, the American Council on Education can support you in getting accommodations.

4) Prepare! Do not take the test (which actually consists of 5 sub-tests: science, math, social studies, reading, and writing) without spending time learning and practicing material. There are many ways to do this:

-Free online practice questions
-Fee based online preparatory courses
-Classes and help through local testing centers
-Work books
-Study groups (you can even form your own)
-Television channel with GED help (see ACE website)
-Private tutors

The main point is that you have been away from the high school environment for a number of years and it is important that you take seriously the kind of time commitment needed to understand the material enough to pass. This is a do-able task for you, but will require some focus and preparation.

5) Avoid Scams. While there are legitimate online preparatory courses, there are no legitimate online GED tests. The GED test can ONLY be taken in an official site, which you will find through the ACE listing. However, another alternative for you, which is credible as long as it is accredited, is an online high school diploma. This option might be worth exploring and will also help you in your career planning.

Good luck! With practice and preparation you will be making strides in your career development to get the kind of life you want for you and your child.

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