Failing the GED test can be a demoralizing experience, but it doesn't mean you have to retake all six sections. In most cases, you can just retake the portions on which you performed poorly as long as you haven't exceeded your state's annual limit on test retaking. Taking extra time to prepare before you retake the test can help ensure a higher score.
When you get your GED test scores, you'll get a composite score calculated based upon your scores on each individual test section. To pass, your composite score has to be higher than 2,250, which equates to an average score on each section of 450. You'll also have to get a minimum score on each test section of 410 to pass and will need to retake any sections on which you scored lower than this minimum score.
Retaking Test Subjects
You're allowed to retake the GED test subjects up to three times per year, but your state may have additional rules -- such as waiting periods before you can retake the test. You'll also have to pay a retesting fee, which varies from state to state. To get credit for your new test scores, you'll have to retake the test before Jan. 2, 2014, when the new GED test launches.
Retaking the Test
If your scores in each subject are low -- below 450 -- it may be better to retake the entire test because a higher score in one or two sections can significantly raise your composite score, allowing you to score lower in areas in which you struggle. For example, if you get a 500 on two sections, a 450 on one section and a 410 in two sections, you'll still be able to pass the test because of your higher 500 scores.
Boosting Your Scores
Although you might be in a rush to retake the test, it's often better to wait unless you failed because you were ill, late or missed part of the test. Try signing up for a GED test study course, reviewing old tests and brushing up on basic skills. For example, if you failed the math section, spend time reviewing math books and learning how to correctly use math formulas.
Van Thompson is an attorney and writer. A former martial arts instructor, he holds bachelor's degrees in music and computer science from Westchester University, and a juris doctor from Georgia State University. He is the recipient of numerous writing awards, including a 2009 CALI Legal Writing Award.