Published Dec. 11, 2013
By Don Granese, KNDU TV
Major changes are coming to the GED program that will affect local test takers.
We could be seeing some of the major changes as early as the start of the New Year. Some modifications have already been made in the courses offered locally to prepare for the shift.
"We provide computers in every classroom. We have computers on wheels that we take so there's laptops available so the instructors can allow students to have more time with typing," said Daphne Larios from Columbia Basin College where changes are already being made.
From pen and paper to mouse and computer screen, the GED program has a new look. It is a nationwide initiative that the testing service hopes will help prepare their students for what lies ahead.
"We live in a technological world so we would be doing a disservice to our test takers by not incorporating technology into our testing program," said Armando Diaz who works for the testing service out of Washington D.C.
CBC has wiped the white boards clean and moved to smart board technology. Students can solve equations and problems right on the big computer screen. While the younger participants may think nothing of it, many of the students are actually older adults transitioning to careers with employers who want to see newer skills.
"They need to know how to use the computer and do memos and type letters and things that are different skills that they may not have had to do in the past," said Larios.
The web site offers practice tests. Say goodbye to that old calculator that needs batteries, now there's a real life digital calculator that pops up in the math section. By incorporating all of these changes, CBC and the national testing service hope to prepare their graduates with more than just problem solving skills.
"Employers and colleges told us that, these are what our test takers need to succeed at that next level," explained Diaz.
This semester has just about wrapped up, but if you have been thinking of getting a GED, courses start back up in the spring at CBC where all of the testing will now be done electronically.
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