What is the Format?
The Alabama GED is comprised of four separate subject tests: Reasoning through Language Arts; Social Studies; Science; and Mathematics. The four modules can be taken all at once (taking roughly 7.5 hours) or spread out and tackled one or two subjects at a time. Time allowed for the tests ranges from 90 - 150 minutes, with language arts being the longest test at 150 minutes to allow 45 minutes for an essay portion. The science test has just one section, but the math and social studies have two sections each and the language arts section is divided into three. The test is conducted on a computer, and questions are structured as multiple choice, fill-in-the-blank, hot spot (select a spot on an image), short answer and extended response.
How is the Exam Scored and What if I Fail?
Each subject test has a potential for 200 points, and students who score 150 or higher earn a passing score on that section. Test-takers must pass all four sections to earn the GED. If you score less than 150 on one or more sections of the GED, you can wait 30 days and then retake that portion of the exam; you won't need to retake the sections that you passed. Alabama allows individuals to retake a failed section of the test without first attempting all four sections, and other than the constraints of the waiting period, there is no limit on the number of times one takes the test.
Who is Eligible?
To be eligible to take the GED, you need to meet the following general requirements:
- You must not be enrolled in a K-12 school.
- You must not have earned a diploma from any accredited secondary school.
- You must meet certain age requirements.
Individuals 18 and older have no age-related requirements, but students who are 16 or 17 will need to meet some conditions and provide additional documentation. Details are available on the Alabama Community College System website (www.accs.cc).
How do I Register for the GED and What Will it Cost?
To register, set up an account online at MyGED (www.MyGED.com) then fill out forms, select a testing site and date and make a payment; there is no on-site registration available at the testing centers. The website provides a locator feature that allows you to search for the closest site and nearby classes. The cost to take the GED exam in Alabama is $30 per subject area, and applicants who want to spread out the four modules need only pay for the subject test(s) they register for. For those who want to retake sections of the exam, two retake attempts per subject will be discounted to a cost of $10.
How do I Prepare?
The state of Alabama provides you with a number of resources that can help you prepare to take the GED: free preparation classes, GED on TV and individual study. Free GED preparation classes are held at adult education centers. In addition, check out your local community colleges to see if they offer GED preparation classes. GED on TV broadcasts GED study sessions. Visit the following website for more information: www.ket.org/GED. If you choose to study independently, visit your local library to use their GED study materials or buy the materials from your local bookstore or online. Be sure your materials reflect the major changes to the GED structure and content that were made in 2014.