“It is a new world in high school equivalency,” reports Molly Dodge, River Valley Resources, Madison, adult basic education director.
“This is the first time more than one high school equivalency test has been available to states ... (It) has always been based on state requirements, but most people have referred to GED® (General Equivalency Diploma) as the generic title .... Indiana chose McGraw Hill as its new vendor. The assessment is called the Test Assessing Secondary Completion.” However, the test, which became effective Jan. 1, will be referred to as the Indiana High School Equivalency Diploma.
The new exam “will be a better indicator of a student’s readiness for entering postsecondary programs or a career. The rigor of the test will gradually align to the College and Career Readiness Standards for Adult Education over the next three years, which will help students and educators stay focused on fundamentals, while also gradually deepening the level of knowledge required,” she says.
The Indiana Department of Workforce Development chose the new assessment because it ensures the state “can offer a high school equivalency test that matches employer demand and is both affordable and accessible. An expert panel of representatives from the Indiana Department of Correction, Indiana Department of Education and IDWD were all involved in evaluating all proposals offered for the test .... (and) Ivy Tech and the Indiana Association of Adult and Continuing Education (representatives) provided expert analysis of the available testing options.
“In order to maintain accessibility, the new exam will continue to be offered in both paper and computer-based formats, ensuring Indiana’s current network of providers, including correctional facilities, will not be disrupted. It will also be available in English, Spanish, Braille and audio versions for the visually impaired,” Dodge points out.
The test assesses five subjects: reading/language arts, writing, mathematics, science and social studies. In order to earn the diploma, a student must demonstrate that he or she is more proficient than 40 percent of seniors who graduate from high school.