GED scores are intended to represent a student's academic capabilities compared to recent high school graduates. Although the purpose of you GED score is to evaluate you compared to recent high school graduates, it is not intended to be a complete assessment of your entire academic capabilities. Your GED Scores are comprised of two items: your GED standard score and your percentile rank. Each of the five main GED tests (writing, social studies, science, reading, mathematics) is scored on a scale of 200-800. The percentile rank ranges from 1 to 99.
The percentile rank measures how you did relative to graduating seniors who took the test. For example, if your percentile rank were 74, it would imply that 74% of the graduating seniors who took the test score at or below your score.
Your GED test score is determined by first calculating your raw score, and then determining a scaled score. Your raw GED Score is determined by giving you 1 point for each correct answer and 0 points for each incorrect answer. Your raw score is then “equated” to derive a scaled score. A scaled score reduces the impact of different test versions and the students who take specific versions.
Interpreting your GED Scores - GED Passing Scores
To pass the five part GED Test, you must score higher than approximately 60 percent of graduating seniors. For the current series GED tests a minimum passing standard has been set at 450 across the five content area (implying that you score at least a 2250). Additionally, you must score at least 410 on each individual GED test.
Since the GED credential is granted by the jurisdiction where you reside, they may set a different requirement for passing (as long as it is at least meets the minimum 2250/410 requirement).
The best way to understand your GED Scores is by comparing them to other students. The table below lists your score and an estimated national class rank. For example, if you scored a 550 on your GED Test, this implies that your national class rank would be “Top 25%” (i.e., you would be ranked in the top 25% of graduating high school seniors). For the most recent graduating class, the average (mean) SAT Scores were 502 for Critical Reading, 515 for Math and 494 for Writing.
GED Scores and Estimated National Class Rank
|GED Score (Standard)||Estimated National Class Rank|
GED Scores For Colleges
Required GED scores for college admissions vary widely depending on the institution. Some colleges do not have formal minimum GED scores for admissions. Other colleges review your GED scores along with other factors, and may require you to take standard admissions tests such as the SAT or ACT. Other colleges, however, have minimum required scores for admission. Some sample requirements are listed below:
- Oregon Tech requires a minimum composite score of 580
- Ball State requires a standard average score of at least 520
- University of Oregon requires a minimum of 580 for your average standard score
- Wayne State University only requires the passing score of 450
Converting GED Scores to a GPA
Many students wonder if a GED score can be converted to a GPA. The short answer is no. The main reason you can not reliably convert a GED score to a GPA is because of the wide differences in GPAs among different high schools. A GPA of 3.2 in one high school may be "equivalent" to a GPA at another high school. Interpreting your scores as a percentile is considered the best comparison to other high school graduates. The following video explains this in more detail.
Video: Can You Make a GED Test Score into a GPA?
If You Don't Pass The GED
If you don't pass one or more of the GED tests you are allowed to take them again. Each state and jurisdiction may have its own rules governing when and how you can retake the tests. For example, states/jurisdictions may have requirements regarding time between retakes. Some states may also require you to attend a GED preparation course before you are allowed to take the test again. Additionally, most states will require additional fees for you to retake the GED exam. You should check with your local state/jurisdiction GED administrator to verify the specific process for retaking a GED in your region.