GED Test Changes Result in Scams in Wisconsin

UPDATED Monday, May 6, 2013--6:15p.m.
The GED test is getting re-vamped at the end of this year: it's switching to a computer-based exam. One expert tells us the changing format can make it more common for fake GED scams to pop-up.

We're told it's not a widespread problem, but there have been instances of students being scammed into thinking they were getting their GED, when in fact they were throwing their money away on a fake credential. We're told those fees have ranged anywhere from $250 to more than $1,000. Bottom line, there are a few ways to distinguish between legitimate GED testing and scams. The easiest is that the GED is never offered online, you have to actually go to a proctored site. "It needs to be at the local community college and on our website are the sites to go to where you can officially register for it," said Jim Merritt, the director of testing and assessment at Madison College. "And part of that requirement will be providing a government-issued ID because we want to assure that you are who you say you are. And the tests are only given at a proctored situation, they're not given online or at any place off site."

The GED consists of five tests and at Madison College the cost in $90. If you run into an advertisement for someplace charging much more than that, it's likely a fake.

And for those who may be looking to shirk the work and intentionally purchase a fake GED, you should know that it's very easy--and very common--for employers and colleges to check the veracity of your credential and know that it's a fake.
Posted Monday, May 6, 2013 --- 10:44 a.m.

JANESVILLE, Wis. (AP) -- Changes in the GED, or the General Educational Development, program are leading to some scams in Wisconsin.

The GED is an equivalent to a high school diploma. Those seeking one must successfully finish their tests by January or they will have to start over.

Test administrators say the deadline is resulting in scams where fake diplomas are offered for a fee.

Blackhawk Technical College's testing coordinator told the Janesville Gazette for a Monday story that people running the scams trick people into paying $250 to $1,300. They change their phone numbers often and often are located in other countries so they can't be caught.

GED tests will be computer-based starting next year. Also, an essay question will be added to bring the test in line with high school standards.

Copyright 2013: Associated Press

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