GEDTSGeneral Educational Development Testing Service
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These recently announced changes--a more rigorous GED test, a new delivery model, and essentially a new vendor (PearsonVue, the GEDTS service provider)--have understandably led to frequent and widespread discussion among correctional education practitioners, who will need to adapt their GED programs accordingly.
Acknowledging the huge task of designing appropriate professional development for all those providing instruction in Adult Basic Education programs across the country, GEDTS partnered with the Correctional Education Association (CEA), the National Institute of Corrections (NIC), and the National Center for Family Literacy (NCFL) to ascertain professional development needs and design a standard training package for educators.
Additionally, GEDTS published the Assessment Guide for Educators to guide individuals through the new assessment.
The tension occurs as jurisdictions become operational and current while correctional units are expected to establish a legal relationship with Pearson to access the software and a contractual relationship with GEDTS, LLC to for the purpose of establishing the fee structure and payment method.
The primary question for many correctional units is whether they have to go through their State's GED Jurisdiction to sign contracts or work directly with GEDTS, LLC and PearsonVUE to sign contracts and establish the legal relationship needed to conduct business.
In addition, the agency needs to have a contract with GEDTS, LLC for the purposes of establishing a fee structure and paying invoices for the test administrations.
To date, GEDTS has not announced the cost of future products or services, including practice tests or scoring and credentialing.
In a 2011 discussion with Adult Basic Education practitioners from around the country, GEDTS made the following comment:
As we implement computer-based testing, each jurisdiction's unique policies are being considered individually to ensure appropriate and affordable pricing to the candidates (GEDTS, 2011).
Also, recognizing the need for those individuals with disabilities who qualify for specific testing accommodations, GEDTS stated the following:
Issues addressed included views on the adequacy of counselor training on the GED, knowledge about the content of the GED and the GEDTS accommodations allowed, perceived importance of the GED to the future vocational success of clients with SLD, and perceived equitability of the GED with the high school diploma.
GEDTS staff describes the GED as becoming a test that successful adult students will take more than once.