Get It Done!
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Welcome to the "Get It Done!" Blog!

The purpose of this page is to keep you informed about upcoming changes to the GED that will be occurring between now and January of 2014. The posts on this blog will be in order with the most recent post coming first. Be sure to scroll down for information that we have shared in the past so as to get the full picture! 

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

October Updates to Our GED 2014 Blog.
One of the most significant changes in the 2014 GED Test, aside from it being computerized, is the change in writing. There is no longer a separate writing test for the GED. Writing is being integrated into 3 of the 4 content areas:
1. Reasoning Through Language Arts (RLA)
2. Science
3. Social Studies
Writing is required in the form of Short Answer and Extended Response (ER). RLA and Social Studies content areas will have Extended Response questions. All three will require Short Answer. There will be 45 min. allowed for the Extended Response in the RLA content area and 25 min. allowed in the Social Studies content area.

The longest of the Extended Response will be in the RLA content area. This will be scored based on 3 traits from the Anchor Standards in the Common Core State Standards for Literacy in History/Social Studies. These traits are:

Analysis of Argument and Use of Evidence
Development of Organizational Rules and Structure
Clarity and Command of Standard English Conventions

The current 5 paragraph essay that is an opinion to a prompt will no longer be used. Test takers will need to be able to cite evidence in a given reading and make a convincing case for their response to the given question while still displaying proper English usage. Scoring for Extended Response for RLA will be on a four-point scale for each of the 3 traits. For the Social Studies ER, the first trait will score on a four-point scale and the last 2 traits will be scored on a 2 point scale. As you can see, while Social Studies will still require good form for writing, the focus will be more on the analysis and use of evidence.

The Short Answer (SA) will require a variety of strategies that depend on the question. One question might require that the test taker provide 3 details from the reading. This question would score one point for each of the details requested. However, another question might require a range of possible correct answers that require summarization or synthesizing into a coherent answer. This response would earn points based on the level of correctness of the answer. The focus of the SA is the application of writing in a real world situation. Questions will require test takers to demonstrate abilities that would be necessary in real life, like the ability to write a paper in post secondary education classes or a report in the workplace.

The scoring guides for the SA and the scoring rubrics for the ER are available at

Thursday, September 20, 2012

The GED Testing Service has released practice tests that are designed for you, as the instructor, to have a better understanding of the format and content of the new 2014 GED test. They are called Item Samplers. There are four Item Samplers, one for each of the content areas on the new test: Reasoning through Language Arts (RLA -formerly called Literacy), Mathematical Reasoning, Science, and Social Studies. Each of the Item Samplers is available in three different formats, but all contain the same information:

1. A Web-based or online version that requires Internet access
2. A downloadable version that, once downloaded from the Internet, can run on a computer without an active Internet connection
3. A PDF that contains screenshots of each Item Sampler and is designed for use in situations where a paper version of the sampler content is desired

The purposes of the Item Samplers are to help educators:

  • Understand the item types used in each test
  • View the content in context of test items and experience a simulated computer-based testing environment 
  • The Item Samplers have the look and functionality of the operational test in 2014, but are simulations of the actual testing software, not the testing software itself:
  • The Item Samplers run on the Internet, while the real test, just like the current 2002 GED® test on computer, will only be given in official GED Testing Centers.
  • While the Item Samplers provide scoring information, they don't include any actual scoring functionality.

Each item has an "answer explanation" tool on the tool bar containing additional information about the item and its answer.
Some of the information included is:

  • The question type (e.g., multiple choice, short answer, hot spot, etc.)
  • The point value of the question (not all questions are worth just 1 point)
  • An identifier of the Assessment
  • Target and Indicator being measured by the question
  • The correct answer with its explanation (rationale)
  • The incorrect answer choices and the explanation (rationale)

The Item Samplers give a good indication of the competence level on computers that will be required. Some of the computer competencies include the ability to:

  • Use the tab at the top of the item to see additional pages.
  • Use drop down boxes to select the correct answer.
  • Use fill-in-the-blank responses.
  • Use the calculator tool.
  • Use the Flag for Review tool.
  • Understand how to select the tools provided.
  • Understand how to manipulate a mouse to select or deselect items.

To see the Item Samplers, go to


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