GED Question Types: Multiple Choice Questions

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  • 0:02 Questions on the GED
  • 1:18 Passage &…
  • 2:27 Multiple-Select Items
  • 3:08 Strategies for Success
  • 4:31 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Clio Stearns

Clio has taught education courses at the college level and has a Ph.D. in curriculum and instruction.

If you're preparing for the GED, you'll want to know what kinds of questions to expect and what strategies will help you succeed. This lesson gives an overview of the multiple-choice questions on the GED exam and some success tips.

Questions on the GED

There are five sections of the GED test: reading language arts, writing language arts, social studies, science, and mathematics. The exact breakdown of question type varies from one section to another; however, more than half of the questions on the GED are multiple-choice questions.

There are multiple-choice questions in each section of the GED, though they do not comprise as significant a percentage of the test as they used to. The multiple-choice questions will give you four different answer choices. In most cases, you are seeking the one appropriate answer choice. Multiple-choice items are considered a reliable standardized measure and are used on most standardized tests, so the format should not come as a surprise to you.

When you are taking the GED, you will want to spend about 90 seconds for each question on average. This means that you should be strategic about answering and be prepared to work with the test format. The remainder of this lesson will offer you some examples of multiple-choice questions you might find on the GED and will offer you some strategies that are useful for multiple-choice questions.

Passage and Multiple-Choice Question

On the reading, social studies, and science sections of the test, most of your multiple-choice questions will be based on a passage, chart, or other type of primary source document. The test will present you with a split screen, with the passage or document on your left side and the related question (or questions) on the right side. For instance, on the left side, you might see a fictional passage about a character undergoing an obstacle. On the right, you might see a multiple-choice question like:

  • What characteristic best describes the main character in the passage you just read?

Then, you will see four answer choices. The answer choices might include:

  • Courageous
  • Foolish
  • Heartless
  • Nefarious

You should select the answer choice that best describes the character at hand.

When answering passage or document-based questions, remember that the answer will be embedded in the passage or document. You will be relying on your reading skills but not on your prior knowledge about the topic. These questions will only have one correct answer.

Multiple-Select Items

A different type of multiple-choice question on the GED will have more than one correct answer. In these cases, the instructions will tell you how many answers you should choose. You may be asked to choose up to three correct answers, so read the instructions carefully.

An example of a multiple-select item might say:

  • Who was a past U.S. president? Choose two answers.

The answers might read:

  • Benjamin Franklin
  • Sonia Sotomayor
  • George Washington
  • George Washington Carver
  • Abraham Lincoln

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