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Changes on the horizon for GED-seekers
AUG. 19, 2013
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Test expected to be more rigorous and costly than before

By Kristen Miller
News Editor

Those who have yet to complete the requirements for their General Education Development Test (GED) are advised to do so soon as changes loom on the horizon for test-takers.

“It’s really concerning to me in that it’s an extreme change,” said Julie Mischke, the lead teacher for Hutchinson Adult Basic Education, of the new testing requirements that will take effect Jan. 1, 2014.

Though she said the benefits will be good, the changes are expected to be much more rigorous and more costly, which is why Mischke advises GED seekers to complete the tests by Dec. 15. Anyone who hasn’t completed all five of the tests by that date, will lose previous test history and the money paid for them.

“This is huge for families and individuals,” Mischke said, especially for those who are currently out of the workforce.

The changes come after Pearson Vue, a leading education and testing company, bought the program previously administered by the American Council on Education.

Mischke explained that the tests are meant to show competency of a high school diploma and also college readiness.

Once done with five tests, it will now be done in four and includes greater academic language, greater cost, and more critical thinking, Mischke warned. Therefore, the preparation will take longer as well, she noted.

Mischke advises people against procrastinating in order to complete the necessary tests by the deadline.

ABE works to meet the needs of students, starting where they are at to where they need to be in order to be successful on the test. “We want to make sure, with the new cost, people will be ready for the tests and be successful,” Mischke said.

GED preparation can be completed through Dassel-Cokato Adult Basic Education, which takes place in the Alternative Learning Center (Coldwell Banker building) on Highway 12, Cokato. Contact community education at (320) 286-4120, or stop in Mondays or Tuesdays from 5 to 8 p.m.

Additional educational opportunities

In a joint FASTTRAC project, Ridgewater College, Central Minnesota Jobs and Training Services, and Hutchinson ABE will be offering a Business Discoveries class.

This class will help students create a portfolio and resumé, and give them soft skills to get a job in the retail or food industry.

The commitment will be Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays beginning Sept. 10 from 8:30 a.m. to noon.

Students will prepare for the National Retail Federation and ServSAFE certifications for those who want to work in the food industry, and may have the opportunity to take an integrated Ridgewater class in January.

Those interested may go to Ridgewater College, Hutchinson campus, Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. in room 145, or call Hutchinson ABE at (320) 234-8507.

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