GED Algebra Exam: Training and Preparation Information

Algebra, the method of performing mathematical computations using variables, is a part of the General Educational Development (GED) exam. Find out more about how to prepare for the algebra component of the GED exam.

GED Algebra Exam Preparation

Community colleges often have preparation classes for the GED exam. Typically, these classes prepare prospective test-takers for the entire GED exam. If an examinee is only interested in preparing for the algebra portion of the exam, community colleges that offer continuing education classes often have preparation courses for the entire math module of the GED exam. Many of these preparation courses are offered in an online format, making it easy for students preparing for the GED exam to work and still have time to study. Prep courses are also available through private organizations.

GED Algebra Exam

The 2-part mathematical reasoning section of the GED exam is 90 minutes, consisting of 45 minutes of multiple-choice questions and 45 minutes of open-response questions. Algebraic problem-solving questions make up 20-30% of the math exam. A portion of the exam allows individuals to use a calculator, which is provided by the testing site. For the remainder of the test, test-takers must determine the answers using their own math skills.

GED Requirements

Each state has guidelines for people wishing to take the GED exam. Generally, an applicant must be 18 years old. School districts that administer the GED exam may make exceptions to the age requirement under certain conditions.

Usually, an applicant must be a resident of the county in which he or she takes the exam. A Social Security Number (SSN) is not generally required; states that ask for an SSN will issue an identification number in lieu of the document. Non-residents and illegal aliens are allowed to take the GED exam if they meet the requirements of the state.


Algebra may be used for solving time, distance, money and cooking length problems; it is often incorporated into day-to-day tasks. Any equation that contains an unknown is an algebraic equation. For example, a person who needs to meet his or her friend for lunch at 1 p.m. at a destination 25 miles away may use algebra to determine the amount of time he or she needs to arrive at that destination. He or she might also explore how much money is needed for lunch and whether calculations are needed to factor in road conditions.

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