For people who were unable to obtain a traditional high school diploma, the General Education Development (GED) test may be extremely beneficial in helping these individuals to advance their college eligibility and their employment opportunities (considering many employers now require a high school diploma or GED). While there are many Web sites claiming you can earn your GED diploma by taking the test online, this is simply not true. These institutions are not affiliated with the American Council on Education. An individual is required to go to an approved testing center to take the proctored exams in order to earn a legitimate GED diploma. Therefore, these online versions of the GED test should simply be used as practice tests. Here are the steps to obtain your certified GED diploma.

Taking the GED Test

Practice for the GED test. This can be done online (see Resources below). There are several helpful Web sites that allow you to take a practice version of the GED test to prepare you for the actual test. Plus, completion of the practice test is mandatory in most states before a person is eligible to take the GED test.

Attend GED classes if necessary. Some people may find it necessary to attend classes to prepare them for the GED test. These classes are free or very low-cost in most states. Many states even offer these GED prep classes online.

Find a testing center in your area. The American Council on Education’s Web site has a handy tool that allows you to enter your zip code and be directed to the nearest testing center(s). ((See Resources below.)

Get plenty of rest before taking the GED test.

Relax and do your best. Don't get discouraged and give up if you do not pass the test on your first try. The GED test can be taken more than once.