Getting your GED

Category: Education

Diverse group of students looking very happy - outdoors 

Students who did not finish high school always have the option of receiving their diploma through GED testing. Earning your GED opens up doors to opportunities that you may not have had otherwise—often, the same opportunities that high school graduates have. This includes various jobs that require high school as a minimum education requirement; those who earn their GED also have the opportunity to attend technical school or college. In fact, many colleges throughout the country will automatically accept a GED applicant the same way they would accept a high school graduate. When it comes to schools with stricter acceptance criteria, those with GEDs may be accepted by meeting scoring requirements on a placement test, or after completing two years at a community college first. No matter what your plans may be, the first step is to get that GED. The following is what you need to know about taking the GED exam:

State requirements

It’s important to review the requirements for your state, as they can vary. There is a minimum age, which is usually 16-years-old, but some states require that all test takers be at least 18-years-old. Before you go through the trouble of preparing for and registering for the GED exam, make sure you meet the minimum age requirement first. Additionally, every state has its own testing fees and other policies set in place, which can be helpful to find out about ahead of time.

Preparing for the exam

The GED will test for four years’ worth of knowledge in a 7.5-hour exam. As such, it’s no surprise that this test can be challenging. Whether you recently dropped out of high school or it’s been many years since you were a student, it’s important to prepare for the test by studying very hard. It can be especially difficult for those who dropped out many years ago, but with a lot of dedication and studying, it’s certainly possible to achieve a passing score. It’s important to get a copy of the latest GED exam study guide (make sure it’s the latest version, as the GED test is continuously being updated) and take practice tests online. Take plenty of these practice exams until you’re confident that you’re ready for the real thing.

Taking the test

Find testing locations in your area by visiting, selecting the testing center of your choice, and registering a date and time. Plan for 7.5 hours of test taking, which is usually split into two separate testing days. The latest version of the GED, however, gives test takers the option to take as much (or as little) of the exam they’d like in a single sitting. There are time limits for each section to keep in mind as well, with the language arts section having a 150-minute time limit, and the math section having a 115-minute time limit. As such, you’ll want to time yourself when you’re taking your practice exams.

Upon request, test takers with special needs may qualify for extra time, paper-based tests, and other accessibilities based on their individual needs. If you have a special request, ask your local testing center for more details prior to your testing date.

Retaking the test, if needed

Don’t feel discouraged if you don’t pass the GED exam on your first attempt—only about 60 percent of high school seniors pass the test on their first try. Policies will vary by state, but you’ll likely be able to retake each section of the exam for a total of three times each year. You won’t need to retake sections of the exam that you did pass, and those scores are saved and combined with your new scores when you retake the test.

Did you receive your GED and now have dreams of attending college, but need cash to pay for tuition? Peachtree Financial Solutions may be able to help. If you’re receiving long-term payments from an annuity or structured settlement, Peachtree may be able to buy some or all of your future payments and provide you with a lump sum of cash. Contact Peachtree Financial Solutions today to learn more about selling future payments for a lump sum.


Nothing above is meant to provide financial, tax, or legal advice. You should meet with appropriate professionals for such services.

Tags: college, ged

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