The Main Stream

Dec 16, 2013 8:11 AM by Ryan Haarer

Students rush to take GED before changes kick in on January 1st

TUCSON- In 2014 all GED tests given in Arizona will be done on the computer. When news first broke, 225 adult education students rushed to Pima Community College for the last sign up day of 2013. A typical sign up day sees about 30 people.

Martha Castillo did not pass her last hard copy GED test. She'll have to take the computer based GED 2014.

"I think it's going to be easier because the essay for me was kind of hard" Castillo said.

Besides taking the test on a computer the new test has a different writing section that adult education teachers are hammering home at El Pueblo Liberty Learning Center. The writing section will be geared towards reading comprehension instead of the current opinion based essay.

"It's not just a road memorization and then give it back in the test. There is really a lot more thinking involved and that's reflective of the new college and career readiness standards and the trends towards all educational systems moving in that direction," said Regina Suitt, Dean of Adult Education at Pima Community College.

She says most people have the basic computer skills needed to take the test and anyone behind will be coached until they feel comfortable typing out their answers.

"Of course they are going to go through the test a little faster if their typing is a little faster if their typing is a little faster and we are looking at ways to do that in our computer labs and in classrooms with typing software."

As of right now the test will cost fifty dollars more than before but the fee now includes a score breakdown and three attempts to pass the new test.

The GED 2014 is now a for profit exam opening up options for two new high school equivalency exams to hit the marketplace. Arizona has not adopted those options yet but they could be coming at competitive rates.

For more information on the GED 2014 visit www.pima.edu.

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