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How to Get a GED in Maryland
What is a GED?
"GED" stands for "General Educational Development." The GED is a test developed by the American Council on Education (ACE). According to ACE, "more than 95 percent of U.S. employers consider GED graduates the same as traditional high school graduates in regard to hiring, salary, and opportunity for advancement."
If the GED is not a good choice for you and you live in Maryland, the External Diploma Program is another option you might wish to consider.
The GED consists of 5 tests:
- Language Arts, Writing, Part I (50 questions, 75 minutes) and
Language Arts, Writing, Part II (1 essay, 45 minutes)
- Social Studies (50 questions, 70 minutes)
- Science (50 questions, 80 minutes)
- Language Arts, Reading (40 questions, 65 minutes)
- Mathematics (50 questions, 90 minutes)
You take the GED tests over a two-day period. Most parts of the tests are multiple-choice. Both the Maryland Adult Literacy Resource Center and ACE provide detailed descriptions of the GED exams.
To earn your high school diploma, you must score at least 2250 points, with at least 410 points on each of the 5 tests. After you pass all the GED tests, your high school diploma will be awarded by the Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing, and Regulation in conjunction with the Maryland State Board of Education.
If you have more questions about the GED, contact the GED Office of the Maryland Adult Literacy Resource Center.
Can I take the GED? Am I eligible?
In Maryland, you can take the GED if you:
- are at least 16 years old,
- are NOT currently enrolled in high school,
- are NOT a high school graduate,
- are a resident of Maryland, and
- have been officially withdrawn from regular high school for at least three months.
How to Sign Up
The Maryland Adult Literacy Resource Center has an application (PDF format) that you can print out and mail in. Make sure you read the guidelines for completing the application. Depending on your age and other factors, you may need to include additional forms.
Studying for the GED
Contact the Business, Science and Technology Department for current materials. Not only do many of the books have full-length practices exams, but they often offer in-depth review and study tips as well.
Contact the Sights and Sounds Department for current materials.
Maryland Online GED Preparation Classes. The Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation and the U.S. Department of Education now offer a GED preparation class available on the Web. To enroll in the online GED preparation program, you must be:
- a Maryland resident,
- at least 16 years of age,
- officially out of school,
- able to demonstrate minimum 9th grade skills by pre-testing in math and reading at your local Adult Education program, and
- committed to submitting at least 6 assignments and studying 5-6 hours per week.
Taking these online classes allows you to work at your own pace and prepare for all five GED tests.
Where to take the GED test
There are testing centers throughout the state of Maryland. The Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation includes a list of testing centers on their online application (PDF file). If you are not from Maryland, ACE offers a helpful GED testing center locator. You can enter your zip code, and you will be provided with a list of centers near your location.
If You Need More Help
Contact us through our Ask A Librarian Service, call (410) 396-5430, or write:
Enoch Pratt Free Library
State Library Resource Center
400 Cathedral Street
Baltimore, MD 21201
Or, if you are outside of Maryland, contact your local library.