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GED - High School Equivalency


General Information

The General Educational Development (GED) test can give you the opportunity to earn a high school diploma. These tests are designed to measure the general knowledge, ideas and thinking skills that are normally acquired through three years of high school. Many acquire knowledge and skills through work experience, reading and informal training.

You are able to take the GED tests in Newfoundland and Labrador if you:

  • are at least 19 years of age or older;
  • are not currently enrolled in a high school program;
  • have not already graduated from high school;
  • are a Canadian citizen.

The GED testing program consist of five tests in the areas of language arts - writing, social studies, science, language arts - reading, and mathematics. The questions range in difficulty from easy to hard, and cover a wide range of subjects. The five tests take about 7.5 hours to complete and are usually written on a Friday evening and Saturday outside St. John's. In the city of St. John's and surrounding areas the tests are scheduled weekdays, usually Wednesday and Thursday once a month, in the metro region. There is a non-refundable application fee of $30 (money order or cash only) payable to the Newfoundland Exchequer. The composition of the GED test is as follows:

Language Arts, Writing - Part I (75 minutes)

  • 30% sentence structure
  • 30% usage
  • 25% mechanics
  • 15% organization

Language Arts, Writing - Part II (45 minutes)

  • essay

Social Studies (85 minutes)

  • 25% Canadian history
  • 15% world history
  • 25% civics and government
  • 15% geography
  • 20% economics

Science (95 minutes)

  • 45% life science
  • 35% physical sciences
  • 20% earth and space science

Language Arts, Reading (65 minutes)

  • 75% literary text
  • 25% non fiction prose

Mathematics (90 Minutes)

  • 20 - 30% number operations and number sense
  • 20 - 30% data analysis, statistics and probability
  • 20 - 30% measurement and geometry
  • 20 - 30% algebra, patterns and functions

The high school equivalency diploma is awarded upon the achievement of a minimum standard score of 450 on each of the five tests, and an average of 450 on the five tests in the battery.

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GED Computer-based Testing

The 2002 GED testing series is moving from a paper-based to computer-based format. A test taker will be able to answer the questions by using a computer. At present, the only GED® computer-based testing centre in Newfoundland and Labrador is located at the Western College in Stephenville

Information on how to register for the GED® test on computer can be found at Registering for the GED® test. PDF (627 KB)

Individuals taking the paper-based test will be mailed a transcript of test results approximately four to six weeks after writing. Those taking the computer-based test will receive results within 24-48 hours after the test is completed.

Additional computer-based testing centres will be added throughout the province over the next 12 months. Keep looking at this website for updates. By January 2015, all GED testing centers in the province should be computer-based and the paper-based test will not be available.

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Preparing for the Tests

Passing the GED tests may require some preparation on your part. Some individuals prepare intensively by taking classes or studying GED preparation books and other materials. Other candidates are comfortable with simply brushing up on a few of the subject areas where they feel they need practice. To determine how you should best prepare for the tests, you can start by contacting local adult education programs sponsored by school districts, colleges, and community organizations in your area. (Check your local telephone directory.) Teachers at these adult education programs can not only help you decide the extent to which you need to study for the five GED tests, but they can also help you develop a study plan that is best for you.

Resources for Prospective Test-Takers

  • Individual study allows you to prepare on your own, using materials such as commercial study guides and the Official GED Practice Tests. You can contact your local official GED testing centre (see below) to locate these preparation materials. Local libraries and bookstores also carry GED study materials.
  • Visit the official GED testing service Web site atwww.gedtest.org opens new window for more information.
  • Official GED practice tests are comparable in content, level of difficulty, and format to the GED tests. You can obtain the Official GED™ Prep+ for Canada text at Indigo and the online GED™ Prep+ for Canada can be found at http://www.pearsoncanada.ca/gedprep

Testing Locations

The GED tests are written in testing centres situated in various locations (generally high schools) around the province under the supervision of local examiners appointed by the Department of Education. Testing is conducted on a regular basis between September and June in St. John’s, and at least twice a year in Clarenville, Gander, Grand Falls-Windsor, Corner Brook, Port aux Basque, St. Anthony, Goose Bay, Marystown, Labrador City, Marystown, and Stephenville.

Applications must be received at least one month prior to writing.

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Available Accommodations for a Documented Disability

What is available:

If you have a documented disability that could keep you from taking the GED tests in the way they are usually given, you might be entitled to receive testing accommodations.

Accommodations are available for people with (but not limited to) the following:

  • Physical disabilities (such as blindness, low vision, deafness, impaired hearing, or mobility impairments);
  • Learning disabilities (such as dyslexia, dyscalculia, receptive aphasia, or written language disorder);
  • Attention-deficit / hyperactivity disorder;
  • Psychological disabilities (such as bipolar disorder or Tourette’s syndrome);
  • Chronic health issues.

Accommodations may include:

  • Audiocassette edition
  • Braille edition
  • Large-print edition (no documentation required)
  • Vision-enhancing technologies
  • Use of video equipment for candidates who are deaf or hard-of-hearing in composing the Language Arts, Writing essay
  • Use of a talking calculator or abacus
  • Certified sign-language interpreter; use of a scribe
  • Extended time; supervised extra breaks
  • Use of a private room
  • One-on-one testing at a health facility
  • Other reasonable accommodations as warranted, based on individual needs

How to get assistance

Please complete one of the following Request for Testing Accommodations forms:

  • Emotional/Mental Health
  • Learning and Other Cognitive Disabilities
  • Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder
  • Physical/Chronic Health Disability

Return the completed form with documentation of your disability to the exam centre. Each request is considered on an individual basis. If the accommodations are approved, your local GED examiner will arrange with you to conduct the testing with the approved accommodations. There will be no additional cost for accommodations.

For more information, contact:

High School Certification Office

Department of Education
P.O. Box 8700
3rd Floor, West Block
Confederation Building
St. John's, NL A1B 4J6
Telephone: 1-709-729-7919
Fax: 1-709-729-0611

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