Clock ticking for those earning GED diplomas

11-08-2013
College & Community, College General, Students/Graduates

SANFORD - The clock is ticking for those who have started work on their General Educational Development (GED) diploma, but haven't completed the battery of five tests required to receive it, according to Dawn Tucker, Central Carolina Community College dean of College and Career Readiness.

The GED tests and diploma are designed for those who do not have a high school diploma. GED Testing Service, the national developer of the tests, describes the GED diploma as "a springboard for more education, training, and better-paying jobs."

As of Dec. 31, the scores for the current battery of tests: Language Arts-Reading, Language Arts-Writing, Mathematics, Science, and Social Studies, will expire. GED Testing Service is launching a new series of four tests on Jan. 2: Literacy, Mathematics, Science, and Social Studies.

The new GED tests are based on the Common Core Standard adopted in 2010 by educational institutions in most states, including North Carolina. These standards require a more rigorous curriculum, provide clear expectations for student learning, and train in real-world skills important to college and career success.

The scores on the current test series will not transfer and, if all five have not been completed, all new tests will have to be taken to earn credit toward the GED.

"We urge students who have started their GED test series to come and complete the rest of the current battery," Tucker said. "Otherwise, they will have to start all over."

The current GED tests are pencil-and-paper tests. That changes significantly, as the new test series will be completely computer based. Test costs are going up. Currently, the cost is $35, a flat fee that covers all five tests. That cost will increase to $120 for the new series of four tests.

GED Testing Service will recognize scores on the current battery taken through Dec. 31, but CCCC College and Career Readiness offices in Chatham, Harnett and Lee counties will close for semester break Friday, Dec. 20. Tests must be taken before then.

Dates for the current GED tests at CCCC are Nov. 19-22, with the registration deadline of Nov. 13; and Dec. 10-13, with the registration deadline of Dec. 4.

If someone started the current series of tests at an institution other than CCCC, that person can still complete the series at the college. Under the "Test Ready" program, those not currently enrolled can call one of CCCC's College and Career Readiness offices and register to take tests on the testing dates.

To register, contact Penny at 919-545-8665 or pshoun@cccc.edu, in Chatham County; Donna at 910-814-8971, in Harnett County; or Malissia at 919-777-7721 or mmcconnell@cccc.edu, in Lee County.

CCCC is one of the seven top GED diploma-awarding community colleges in North Carolina. During the 2012-2013 program year, 423 students earned their GED credentials through CCCC.

For more information about the college's GED program, visit

www.cccc.edu/ecd/departments/ccreadiness/GED.php. For more information about the new battery of tests, visit www.gedtestingservice.com.

The GED Testing Service is a joint venture between the American Council on Education (ACE) and the Pearson education company. Its major goal is the development of an assessment that indicates both career- and college-readiness and high-school equivalency academic skills.