All About the GED: Florida

If you want to pursue a college education or find a better job, but you didn't complete high school, you might consider taking the GED test. In Florida, preparation programs and official GED tests are available in both English and Spanish. Read on to learn how you might receive a State of Florida High School Diploma.

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Taking the GED Test in Florida

The GED, or General Educational Development, test is offered by the American Council on Education (ACE). It's divided into five subjects reflecting those areas commonly covered in traditional secondary school classrooms, including math, science, social studies, reading and writing. Once completed, each section of the test is scored on a scale of 200 to 800. In order to pass, you must earn at least 410 points on each section, with an overall average of 450 per section. If you don't pass, you may retake all or part of the exam up to two times per year.

Eligibility Requirements

To take the test in Florida, you must provide a government-issued ID card at your testing facility. Most Florida counties require you to be a resident of the area, but the state itself doesn't enforce any residency requirements for GED test takers. You can't be currently enrolled in high school or have previously earned your high school diploma. You typically must be 18 years old to take the test in Florida; however, you could test at the age of 16 if you receive permission from the board of your local school district.

Testing Locations

ACE provides a database of official testing locations through its testing center locator (www.acenet.edu). In addition, the Florida Department of Education offers a list of testing centers in the state (www.fldoe.org). These testing locations include local elementary schools, technical centers, state colleges and adult education centers.

Preparing for the Test

While the GED test cannot be taken online, you can prepare using a wide range of resources available through distance learning. ACE offers a number of sample GED questions. You could also purchase study and strategy workbooks at most bookstores or online. Your local PBS station might offer televised GED preparation programs through its LiteracyLink organization (litlink.ket.org). You could also prepare for the GED test in Florida by participating in an adult education program. The Florida Literacy Coalition offers a directory that can help you find GED test prep programs in both English and Spanish (www.floridaliteracy.org).

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