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IN chooses new high school equivalency exam

A new high school equivalency exam will soon replace the GED in Indiana. The decision was made because beginning next year, GED Testing Service will drop its paper-and-pencil test in favor of an online-only exam. The cost of the test also will rise from the current $70 fee to $120.

Indiana Department of Workforce Development spokesman Joe Frank says cost is just one reason the state is moving away from the GED. He says the new Test Assessing Secondary Completion (TASC) is a better measure of college- and career-readiness.

“We really want to make this a robust, rigorous credential so that employers see this as a true high school equivalency.”

CTB/McGraw-Hill will administer the new test. The same company oversees ISTEP exams for the state’s K-12 students. But Frank says he’s not worried about computer glitches like the ones that slowed test takers this spring.

“We’re not going to have hundreds of thousands of people taking the test on the same few days. A good amount of the folks who take the test are pencil-and-paper based test takers.”

Frank says very few of the adult learning centers that administer the tests and none of the state’s prisons were prepared to make the switch to online-only, another reason the Department of Workforce Development went with TASC.

Robert Moore is the director of adult education for the Monroe County Community School Corporation. He says Indiana isn’t the only state moving away from the GED.

“The hardest transition really is getting over that name recognition because employers and the military and colleges and everybody in the public generally kind of defaults to GED like they would for example Kleenex referring to facial tissue.”

Students who’ve started the GED have until December to finish. Otherwise, they’ll have to start over with a new test.

Elle Moxley reports for StateImpact Indiana.

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