GED: Format of the Test

The GED (General Educational Development) Tests are standardized to cover the range of knowledge and ability that graduating high school seniors are supposed to have in a variety of subjects.

The GED consists of the following sections (also, see the following table, "Format of the GED Test):

  • Language Arts-Writing. The scores from these two sections are combined to give the Writing Test Score. The sections are not reported separately.

    Part I: Multiple Choice (50 questions, 75 minutes)

    Part II: Essay (one essay, 45 minutes)

  • Social Studies (50 questions, 70 minutes)

  • Science (50 questions, 80 minutes)

  • Language Arts-Reading (40 questions, 65 minutes)

  • Mathematics

    Part I: with calculator (25 questions, 45 minutes)

    Part II: without calculator (25 questions, 45 minutes)

Each test is scored from 200 to 800 (standard score) and a percentile rank of 1 to 99 is also given. A standard score of 410 on each individual test and an average score of 450 for the complete test battery is the minimum passing standard set by the GED Testing Service. Each state or jurisdiction may establish its own standards for passing the tests, which are the same as or higher than the national standards. Be sure to check the current policies in your state.

A passing score varies from state to state. Generally, you must correctly answer 50% to 60% to pass. Remember, no one is expected to answer all the questions correctly.

Format of the GED Test

Section Number of Questions Minutes
Language Arts, Writing
Part I: Multiple Choice 50 Questions 75 Minutes
Part II: Essay 1 Essay 45 Minutes
Social Studies 50 Questions 70 Minutes
Science 50 Questions 80 Minutes
Language Arts, Reading 40 Questions 65 Minutes
Mathematics
Part I (with calculator) 25 Questions 45 Minutes
Part II (without calculator) 25 Questions 45 Minutes