High School Equivalency Diploma

Alternative 2 – GED Tests

General Educational Development (GED) Tests

The second method of obtaining a High School Equivalency Diploma requires that a registered individual complete and pass five subject tests. The five General Educational Development (GED) Tests are

Test 1: Language Arts—Writing Test (Part I and Part II)
Test 2: Social Studies
Test 3: Science
Test 4: Language Arts—Reading Test:
Test 5: Mathematics (Part I and Part II)


A person, 18 years or older, who has been out of school for at least 10 consecutive months, who passes all five tests in the General Educational Development (GED) test battery with a minimum standard score of 450 or better in each test, and meets the eligibility requirements, will be granted a High School Equivalency Diploma.


Provincial writing centres are listed in Appendix B, page 46. For information regarding registration deadlines, fees, test dates, and to obtain a registration form, contact the writing centre of your choice.

Note: Some of these writing centres also offer GED preparation classes.


Inquire about the cost of writing the GED tests at your selected writing centre.

How to Prepare for GED Tests

The GED tests measure your ability to understand and reason rather than how well you recall facts. The emphasis in the GED Tests is on comprehension, application, analysis, and evaluation of reading material and data. Through an accumulation of education, work, travel, reading, and other life experiences, some people may have sufficient knowledge to pass the GED tests without special preparation.

However, to optimize your opportunity to successfully pass the GED tests, it is advisable to specifically study the five subject areas. There are numerous GED preparation books and learning resources that are useful as self-study guides. Many GED preparation centres in Alberta have selected their preferred resource. Please check with them

Note: In 2002, the General Educational Development (GED) Tests underwent reformatting. There are a wide variety of published GED preparation resources. It is important that you are working from the updated practice tests and guide books that reflect the 2002 changes.

Currently, most available 2002 GED preparation material is American. There is a Canadian edition by Thomson Nelson — Complete Canadian GED Preparation — check with local and online bookstores. 

The Complete Canadian GED Preparation Book has the same structure and number of units, lessons, questions, comprehensive answers, and practice tests as the popular American Steck-Vaughn edition. – 2002 (New Canadian data or information has been substituted in several places in the text so that it relates better to the Canadian student. Wherever this has been done, the structure has been maintained, including the balance of questions, drawing on the same skills in the proportions students will need to use them on the Canadian GED tests.)