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Understanding GED Scores

November 8, 2021

Your test day is almost here. Your GED scores must be at least 145 in each subject area to pass the exam. Are you seeking a GED needed for a certain job? Or do you just want to learn more and feel proud about passing? 

Whatever your motivation, let’s think about the last few questions you might have before you take the test. 

How Is the GED Scored?

When you get your GED scores back, there are two different levels you could earn:

  • Below passing: You scored lower than 145 on one of the subject area tests.
  • Pass: You earned at least a 145 on every subject.

What Are the Subject Areas?

The GED test is divided into four subject areas

  • Mathematical Reasoning
  • Reasoning Through Language Arts
  • Social Studies
  • Science 

The number of points you earn in each section is scored, not the number of questions answered correctly. As previously mentioned, you need a minimum score of 145 in every subject to pass the entire GED test.

What Do My Practice Scores Mean?

Taking a GED Ready practice test will give you a sense of whether you’re ready or not. When you finish, you’ll receive an indicator of how likely you are to pass the real thing.

It’s recommended that you focus on the specific skills in your Study Plan and then take the GED Ready practice test again and see if you can earn a “green” score. A “green” score means you’re ready to take the GED test within the next two weeks. A “yellow” score means that you did a fair job.

Are GED Scores Averaged?

You receive a score report for each subject area. Passing scores must be 145 or higher in each one. For example, you can’t score 125 in one subject and 165 in another to average 145 in each test. 

Keep in mind that you can take each subject test on different days. This can help to focus your mind on the goal of scoring 145 in each area and then repeating that until you pass all the subjects.

What Scores Are Important to Colleges?

A passing score of 145 will help you get into college, but higher GED scores can result in additional benefits: 

  • GED College Ready: You’ll need a score of 165–175 on every subject to show you’re ready for college and probably don’t need remedial classes or placement tests.
  • GED College Ready + Credit: A score of at least 175 in every subject shows you’ve mastered some college-level knowledge, which could earn you college credits.

What If I Don’t Pass?

If you don’t earn a passing score, you can retake the subject tests you didn’t pass. Practice the sample questions for that subject until you can answer about 65% or more of them.  

Retake policies vary based on your state and whether you’re taking a test online or in-person at a test center. In general, you’re allowed to take unlimited repeats of each subject, although you may be asked to wait 60 days after multiple attempts. It’s best to check the testing and retake policies for your state. 

You can also retake subjects for a higher score. You can do this if you haven’t earned your credential and you want to get a better score on subjects you’ve already completed. 

Prepare for Your GED Test with Expert Tools offers several options to help you study and pass the GED. From interactive practice questions to the official practice test, and even an all-inclusive program that includes a bilingual advisor, there are lots of ways to prepare.


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