GED® programs provide preparation for those who wish to take the General Educational Development exam to establish that they have the academic knowledge expected of a high school graduate in Canada or the United States. While some individuals may be able to take and pass the GED® exam without any preparation, many people benefit from completing one of several different types of GED® programs that can increase their knowledge and skills while helping them to be able to pass the test. Some programs offer accelerated instruction in high school–level subject matter, while others focus more on preparing for the exam itself. There are classroom-based, online, and self-study GED® courses and preparation programs available.
Many high schools and community colleges offer GED® programs at a nominal charge to community members. These programs vary in length, but often concentrate on teaching high school–level academic knowledge and skills. These classes are often scheduled during evenings and weekends to make things easier for students who need to work or care for family members. Some individuals can receive GED® test preparation through the military. Other locations that may sponsor GED® programs include adult education programs, rehabilitation facilities, and social service organizations.
Some students may not feel the need to complete a full-length course in the topics the GED® covers. These students may decide instead to take a short course that offers them preparation for the exam itself. This type of program can help the student feel more comfortable about taking the GED® exam by providing an overview of the content of the test as well as test-taking strategies and even a practice exam. GED® exam preparation classes may be offered through various for-profit educational test preparation centers. It is also possible to complete a test prep course online or through the purchase of a book or software.
In addition to classroom training programs, there are online GED® programs as well. An online program may be better suited to students who have difficulty getting to a scheduled class or who have difficulty learning in a classroom setting. The cost of these programs varies, with some sponsors actually offering free GED® preparation programs online. GED® testing centers may also provide online materials that can assist students in preparing for the exam. These materials may include online practice quizzes or downloadable study guides that a student reviews as it is convenient.