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Strategies for GED Social Studies Test

Instructor: Clio Stearns

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

The GED social studies test should not be too daunting! If you are getting ready to take it, this lesson will give you some good test taking strategies that will prepare you for success.

Social Studies GED Overview

Are you getting ready to take your GED tests? The social studies test is an important aspect of the process. The test lasts for 70 minutes and is comprised of different types of multiple choice questions. The questions will assess your understanding of different social studies strands. The strands it focuses on are history, geography, economics, and civics/government. If you are taking the test in Canada, the history and government questions will focus largely on Canadian history and governmental structure; in the US, you will cover the United States specifically. The history section also deals with world history.

Of course, the best way to prepare for the social studies test is to make sure you have a solid understanding of the underlying concepts and ideas in the different areas of social studies. Yet, there are also some particular test-taking strategies that will help you succeed. This lesson provides you with an overview of strategies that should make the social studies test easier for you, and put you on the path toward your GED.

Basic Test-Taking Strategies

Some of the strategies that will help you with the GED social studies test are the same ones that help with most standardized multiple choice tests!

  • Answer Every Question

On the GED test, you are better off answering a question with a guess than skipping it altogether. There is no penalty for guessing, but if you skip a question, you will automatically get it wrong. Therefore, make sure you answer every question on the exam.

  • Process of Elimination

If you do not know an answer at all, but want to make your best guess, read all of the answer choices and get rid of the ones that seem completely impossible. This will narrow down the choices you have left and give you a better chance of guessing the right answer.

  • Pace Yourself

The social studies test lasts for 70 minutes, and you want to make sure to complete the entire thing. Every ten minutes or so, check to see where you are in the test. By 35 minutes in, you should be approximately halfway through.

  • Read Carefully, Not Slowly

This may seem obvious, but on the test, be sure to read your questions and answer choices carefully. Sometimes, one or two words can make a big difference in the meaning of a question or an answer choice. At the same time, be mindful that careful reading is not the same as slow reading. Practice reading carefully without spending too much time on any one item.

  • Questions Before Documents

When you are answering questions about a particular document, like a map or a political speech, it helps to read the questions and at least skim the answer choices before perusing the document itself. Doing this will enable you to read strategically to find just what you are looking for.

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