The number of people who passed the new GED® test in 2014 was dramatically lower than it has been in the past, but Shmoop strives to help improve pass rates.
Americans have been taking the GED since 1942, and the test has undergone a whopping five makeovers since then. The most recent version was introduced in 2014 and said hello to the 21st century by making the test completely computer-based, but it also came with a nearly 90% drop in the number of people who passed the test. According to NPR, 540,535 test-takers passed the GED in 2013, while only 58,524 passed in 2014 (note: this number doesn’t account for incarcerated test-takers or people taking alternative tests).
Shmoop, an online test prep provider that aims to make learning fun, put its math elves to work and came up with the following conclusion about those numbers: not good.
Why the decline? First, although the exact cost depends on the state, the new test is more expensive to take. Second, the computer-based exam may be less accessible to some test-takers. (Sorry, No. 2 pencils. It was nice while it lasted.) Finally, the fact that the new test is aligned to the Common Core and includes technology-enhanced items means that it’s just flat-out harder.
Shmoop offers a comprehensive, engaging, and totally updated guide to the new GED that features in-depth topic review for Reasoning Through Language Arts, Mathematics, Social Studies, and Science. Shmoop’s product also includes diagnostic exams, two full-length practice exams, and practice questions galore that include video answer explanations for visual learners. To top it off, technology-enhanced items allow test-takers to become familiar with those newfangled drag-and-drop and drop-down questions. And, to be sure that the material is accessible to everyone, Shmoop offers review in Spanish as well.
It won’t be easy to bounce back from the dramatic drop in pass rates, but Shmoop is optimistic that its accessible and engaging materials can help lead the way.
Shmoop is a digital curriculum and test prep company that makes fun, rigorous learning and teaching resources. Shmoop content is written by experts and teachers, who collaborate to create high-quality and engaging materials for teachers and students. Shmoop Courses, Test Prep, Teaching Guides, and Learning Guides balance a teen-friendly, approachable style with academically rigorous concepts. Shmoop sees 10 million unique visitors a month on its site and offers more than 7,000 titles across the Web, iPhone, Android devices, iPad, Kindle, Nook, and Sony Reader. The company has been honored twice by the Webby Awards, named “Best in Tech” twice by Scholastic Administrator, and awarded Annual Education Software Review Awards (EDDIES) three years in a row. Launched in 2008, Shmoop is headquartered in a labradoodle-patrolled office in Mountain View, California.
GED® is a registered trademark of the American Council on Education (ACE) and administered exclusively by GED Testing Service LLC under license. This material is not endorsed or approved by ACE or GED Testing Service.