What to Expect From the Science Section of the GED

The best advice for the Science section of the GED is to read as much as you can, and read science material. Whenever you don't understand a word or concept, look it up in a dictionary or online. The items in the Science section assume a high-school level of science vocabulary.

You don't have to be a nuclear physicist to answer the items, but you should be familiar with the vocabulary normally understood by someone completing high school. Then read appropriate material that would be covered in high-school science texts. If you work at improving your scientific vocabulary, you should have little trouble with the Science section.

That same advice applies to all the GED test's sections. Improve your vocabulary in each subject, and you'll perform better.

The Science section on the GED test concentrates on two main themes:

  • Human health and living systems

  • Energy and related systems

In addition, the content of the problems will focus on one of the following areas:

  • Physical science: About 40 percent of this section focuses on physics and chemistry, including topics such as conservation, transformation, and flow of energy; work, motion, and forces; and chemical properties and reactions related to living systems.

  • Life science: Another 40 percent of the Science section deals with life science, including biology and, more specifically, human body and health, relationship between life functions and energy intake, ecosystems, structure and function of life, and molecular basis for heredity and evolution.

  • Earth and space science: This area makes up the remaining 20 percent of this section and includes astronomy — interaction between Earth's systems and living things, Earth and its system components and interactions, and structure and organization of the cosmos.

Go ahead and type in one of the three areas of content into your favorite search engine to find material to read. The search engine will give you links to articles and material from all different levels.

Filter your choices by the level you want and need — for example, use keywords such as “scientific theories,” “scientific discoveries,” “scientific method,” “human health,” “living systems,” “energy,” “the universe,” “organisms,” and “geochemical systems” — and don't get discouraged if you can't understand technical material that one scientist wrote that only about three other scientists in the world can understand.

Items in the Science section are in multiple-choice, fill-in-the-blank, short-answer, hot-spot, and drop-down format.

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