New GED Changes on Horizon

SC edcuators prepare for changes to GED since 2002

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By Monique Williams

RICHLAND COUNTY, S.C. (WOLO) -- Changes slated to take effect for the General Educational Development test, or GED, are dramatic, according to educators. They say now may be the time to get your degree before the updated version is unveiled.

Dropping out of high school in the 11th grade comes with a price for Princess Robbins.

"...loss of work, mental, it drains you, really."

Now, at 24, she realizes things could go even more downhill with no Graduate Equivalence Degree, GED, so she's getting it.

"You don't really have options without it," said Robbins. "It will motivate me better, give me more direction to where I wanna go."

The GED Princess is currently taking is based off of 2002 standards. However, beginning January 1, participants can expect big changes.

Bobby Cunningham is director of adult education services at the W.R. Rogers Adult Education Center for Columbia's Richland District Two. He says at the start of next year, new GED requirements take effect.

"The new GED will assess workforce readiness and college readiness. It will be more along critical thinking lines than literacy based," said Cunningham. "There will be a need for computer skills.The paper/pencil version is $80, five sections, $16 per section. That cost will increase to $150, $30 per section."

In addition to to the test becoming more up-to-date, preparatory classes for the exam are upgrading.

"We have six-week and eight-week courses that can get them ready."

Cunningham says staffers themselves statewide have been preparing for the last year and a half for the big switch. Princess Robbins is ready to make the switch in her own education and in her life.

"I feel good about finishing it now. It's out of the way and the beginning of something new."

If you would like to take the GED, contact your nearest adult education center or call the W.R. Rogers Adult Education Center at 803-736-8787.

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