GED qualification (Grade 12 equivalent)

Who should be thinking about taking the GED® Test?

If you are not in possession of a National Senior Certificate, commonly referred to as a Matriculation- or Matric Certificate, then this is an option for you to consider. So whether you have failed matric, or never had the opportunity to write matric, then consider the GED® as a great alternative. It should also be considered by those who already have a matric but want to compete in the international market for working abroad. This will also suit candidates who have not had Maths, Biology and Science.

What is the GED® Test?

The GED® testing programme serves the purpose of making it possible for you to earn the equivalent of a secondary school leaving certificate, or matric equivalent to facilitate your employment or entry to further studies in South Africa and internationally.

The term “GED” is a registered trademark of the American Council on Education (“ACE”), which is part owner of the GED Testing Service, who administers the GED® testing programme globally. A GED® test credential shows that you have the same general level of academic achievement as a typical high school graduate.

The GED® test is accepted as an equivalent to a high school diploma by approximately 98% of colleges and universities in the U.S. and 95% of employers because they recognise the GED® test as a rigorous examination equal to or exceeding high school proficiency. The GED® test is aligned to the career and college readiness content standards in use throughout the U.S., and the test is standardised and normed using a national sample of recent high school graduates. Also, the Office of the State Superintendent of Education in Washington DC has reviewed the test and determined that it meets their requirements to be granted a High School Equivalency Credential from Washington DC.

SAQA (The South African Qualifications Authority) considers the GED® credential as comparable to the NSC (Grade 12).

What do you get when passing the GED® Test?

On successful completion of the GED® test, you will be issued a GED® High School Equivalency Credential issued by the Office of the State Superintendent of Education for Washington, DC in the USA.

You will receive a transcript from the GED® that will list all the subjects you have completed and the scores you have obtained in each. The status of each subject will reflect whether you have passed the subject or not. There are various performance levels indicated on the transcript, but this will be explained under another section in this document.

Is the GED® recognised in SA?

According to Higher Education Enrolment, a programme of Universities SA (formerly HESA), you may apply to study at a South African University with a GED® Credential and must be accompanied by a letter of admission from an appropriately accredited US university*. This will provide local recognition for your Credential.

It is your responsibility to apply for the letter of admission from an appropriately accredited US university and the foreign conditional exemption letter from Universities SA.

Once you have received your unconditional letter of acceptance from the US University, you need to apply for a certificate of foreign conditional exemption from Universities SA.

What subjects will you need to write?

The test is primarily computer-based and is made up of four test subjects. The test includes written responses that assess your thinking and writing skills, known as “constructed response” items. To ensure the GED® continues to measure the content and skills included in the current high school curriculum, the GED® test undergoes regular review and revision.

The subjects include:

  • Reasoning through Language Art
  • Mathematical Reasoning
  • Social Studies
  • Science

What types of questions are on the test?

The GED® test is made up of the following types of questions:

  • Multiple choice
  • Drag and drop
  • Hotspot (select an area)
  • Fill in the blank
  • Short answer
  • Extended Response

How long does it take to complete an Exam?

When all the subjects are added together, the GED® test will be about seven and a half hours long, but each subject is taken separately. You will be guided on what subject to take first and work out strategies to tackle each one of the four.

The timing for each subject area is as follows:

*The time allotted for sections 1 and 3 may vary slightly, but the total test time will always be 150 minutes.

In alignment with career and college readiness standards, the GED® RLA test focuses on three essential groupings of skills:

  • The ability to read closely
  • The ability to write clearly
  • The ability to edit and understand the use of standard written English in context

The test includes texts from both academic and workplace contexts. These texts reflect a range of complexity levels, regarding ideas, structure, and style. The writing tasks, (called Extended Response (ER) items), require test-takers to analyse given source texts and to use evidence drawn from the texts to support their written analysis.

75% of the texts in the exam are from informational texts (including non-fiction drawn from the science and the social studies, as well as a range of texts from workplace contexts) and 25% are literature texts.

*Candidates are provided with an on-screen calculator, the Texas Instruments TI-30XS Multiview Scientific calculator, for use on most of the items on the 2014 GED® Mathematics Test.

The GED® Mathematical Reasoning Test focuses on two major content areas:

Problem-solving skills are measured in both academic and workforce contexts. In addition to problem-solving, the test includes items that test procedural skill and fluency. The test also assesses five mathematical practice areas and about 30% of the test items measure one of the mathematical practices, as well as a content indicator.

The test assesses critical reasoning skills, balancing conceptual understanding, procedural skill and fluency and the application of the reasoning skills to realistic situations. Each item on the Test is aligned to one social studies practice and one content topic.

The practices are skills that are vital to both textual and quantitative social studies reasoning. The test also measures statistics and data interpretation skills.

The test assesses key science reasoning, balancing conceptual understanding, procedural skill and fluency, and the application of the reasoning skills to realistic situations. Each item on the Science Test is aligned to one science practice and one content topic.

The test includes items that test textual analysis and understanding, data representation and inference skills, as well as problem-solving with science content, in both academic and workforce contexts. The Science Test also measures statistics and data interpretation skills.

Allmed Training Academy will assist you in obtaining equivalent certificate from SAQA and foreign conditional exemption from Matriculation Board and  a the process to How do you apply to a SA university?

You need a letter from Universities SA (formerly HESA) confirming you qualify for a certificate of foreign conditional exemption. In order to be eligible for this letter, you need a letter of unconditional acceptance from an accredited USA University and along with your GED® credential and all four subjects passed at GED® College Ready Level (Minimum score of 165).

What do you need to achieve to pass the GED® test?

To graduate you must earn a minimum score of 145 on each test subject to pass and earn the high school equivalency credential. Scores are calculated out of a total of 200. Your minimum percentage to pass is therefore 72,5% in each subject.

If you fail, you may retake the exam two additional times, at any time. Should you fail a third time, you would have to wait 60 days before the next attempt. There is no minimum grade criterion to qualify for such a rewrite opportunity, but it will attract a test fee each time you write an exam.

What happens if you fail a test?

The GED® Testing Service permits you to test the same subject two additional times without a delay and then requires a 60-day waiting period between further attempts. There is no minimum grade criterion to qualify for such a rewrite opportunity, but it will attract a test fee. The GED® test score report will provide you with detailed feedback to address the skills that you need to work on.

What happens when you have passed all 4 tests?

On successful completion of all tests, you will be issued an electronic version of your GED® High School Equivalency Credential issued by the Office of the State Superintendent of Education in Washington, DC. in the USA.

What makes a GED® test credential “equivalent” to a high school diploma or a secondary leaving certificate?

The GED® test is accepted as an equivalent to a high school diploma by approximately 98% of colleges and universities in the USA and by 95% of employers because they recognise the GED® test as a rigorous examination equal to or exceeding high school proficiency. The GED® test is aligned to the career and college readiness content standards in use throughout the USA, and the test is standardised and normed using a national sample of recent high school graduates. Also, the Office of the State Superintendent of Education in Washington DC has reviewed the test and determined that it meets their requirements to be granted a High School Equivalency Credential from Washington DC.

Is keyboarding speed an issue? How does this influence your test time?

The time given is adequate for students to construct their answer and to key in their response. Field testing has demonstrated that even test-takers with minimal keyboarding skills have sufficient time to complete the Test.

How hard is the test?

The test is aligned with today’s high school standards. The difficulty level needed to pass the GED® test is the same difficulty level as needed to pass high school today.

How is the 2017 GED® test scored and what score is passing?

The 2014 GED® test curriculum is scored by a computer. The passing standard in each content area has been set at a score of 145 on a scale of 100 to 200 scaled score points for each of the four content areas.

How long do you expect we will wait for scores?

Test scores will be returned from within 24 hours of completion of each subject.

How many questions will be on each test?

The new test forms do not specify numbers of test questions—they are based on raw score points instead since all items are no longer worth just one point each. The final raw score point totals are as follows:

  • Reasoning Through Language Arts – 65 raw score points
  • Mathematical Reasoning – 49 raw score points
  • Science – 40 raw score points
  • Social Studies – 30 raw score points

Remember that scores from the 2014 GED® test curriculum are presented in a standardised score scale, to make the scores easier to use and interpret across the content areas. The 2014 scale runs from 100 to 200, with 145 scaled score points as the Passing Standard for high school equivalency; 165 scaled score points as the GED® College Ready score level, reflective of readiness for career and college; and 175 scaled score points as the GED® College Ready + Credit score level.

There is no average score needed for total passing.

What are the entrance requirements?

You need to:

  • Be a minimum of 16 years of age when writing your exam
  • Be in possession of a valid South African Identity Document
  • Have access to a computer or laptop with sound
  • Have internet access

We look forward to having you join our successful team and take your journey to an international Matric equivalent qualification.