If you’re preparing to take your GED, you’ve probably heard the phrase “GED Testing Service.” But what is it?
The GED Testing Service is, in a nutshell, the organization that makes the GED test. But there’s a lot more to the GED testing service than just writing test questions and programming exam software. Today, the GED Testing Service does a lot of things to help GED students, GED instructors, and educational policy makers. Moreover, the organization has a really interesting history dating back to a century ago.
A Brief History of the GED Testing Service
The GED Testing Service is overseen by two different organizations: PearsonVue and the American Council on Education (ACE). PearsonVue got involved with the GED relatively recently. But the American Council on Education actually created the GED in the 1940s, and the ACE itself has existed since 1918.
The American Council on Education was originally formed to help the United States Armed Forces (USAF); their initial goal was to make sure that students could receive the technical education they needed for machinery and operations work in the American military. The ACE consisted of (and continues to consist of) a collective of community colleges, universities, and higher education administrators.
The ACE continued to assist the United States Armed Forces in various ways after World War I. In 1942, the USAF asked ACE to develop a test for soldiers who had enlisted without finishing high school. This test would help soldiers demonstrate that they had the same knowledge as a high school graduate. And the test was called… (wait for it)… the GED. The GED would soon be adopted by many state governments, employers, colleges, and universities. Quickly, this exam became a form of high school completion for soldiers and civilians alike.
Until very recently, however, there was no organization officially called the GED Testing Service. Instead, GED exams were simply designed and administered by ACE. This changed in 2014, when the American Council on Education decided to modernize the GED and ensure that it could easily be administered by computer. To update the GED and make it more accessible to students, ACE partnered with PearsonVue. ACE and PearsonVue worked together to design and administer the new 2014 GED exam. They did this through a new joint organization they created, called—you guessed it—the GED Testing Service.
What is the GED Testing Service Involved in Today?
As I mentioned before, there’s more to the GED Testing Service than just test design. This GED Testing service also provides test prep and other assistance to GED students through its My GED website and through its free online GED practice tests. In addition, they provide resources for teachers, schools, and state governments that want to use the GED to test student knowledge. For an even more in-depth answer to the question, “What is the GED Testing Service?” explore the official GED website.