ALABAMA (WAFF) - If you need to take the GED, the time to do it is now. The test will see some big changes come January 1, 2014.
Right now, it cost $50 to take the test. On Jan. 1st, that price will jump to $120. The price was decided by the testing company, not the state. Alabama has decided not to tack on additional fees though, like some states have done.
The test will also move from a pencil and paper to computer based only. Chris Miller, the Director of Adult Education at Calhoun Community College, said the switch may benefit the younger generation taking their GED, but might be a struggle for people who aren't as computer savvy.
People who have started their GED, but only passed certain sections need to be aware that if they don't finish the whole test by Dec. 31st, they will lose all of their test scores and have to retake, and repay, for the whole test.
The content of the test is also changing. The GED hasn't been revised since 2002. As common core standards have swept the nation, the GED has been revamped to reflect current teachings.
"The GED has always been reflective of a high school equivalency exam. So if the common core standards are being brought into the classroom for K12 and the GED is a mirror of that, that's the reason for the change on the GED test," said Miller.
You may think you have plenty of time to take the old test before Jan. 1st, but Miller said some people aren't as ready as they think. She suggests taking a preparation class or taking a practice test to know where you are at. She also warns that there is a 42 day retest waiting period if you take the paper and pencil test and fail, putting you very close to the deadline.
Several colleges in North Alabama offer free adult education classes, including Calhoun Community College and Drake State Technical College. You can find like to both of those sites below.