Tips for Answering Questions about Text Passages on the GED Social Studies Test

By Murray Shukyn, Dale E. Shuttleworth, Achim K. Krull

About half of the question-answer portion of the Social Studies GED test includes textual passages with a series of questions following based on that passage. Your job is to read the passage and then answer questions about it.

When you’re reading these passages on the test (or in any practice questions or tests), read between the lines and look at the implications and assumptions in the passages. An implication is something you can understand from what’s written, even though it isn’t directly stated. An assumption is something you can accept as the truth, even though proof isn’t directly presented in the text.

Be sure to read each item carefully so you know exactly what it’s asking. Read the answer choices and go through the text again, carefully.

If the question asks for certain facts, you’ll be able to find those right in the passage. If it asks for opinions, you may find those opinions stated directly in the passage or they may simply be implied (and they may not match your own opinions, but you still have to answer with the best choice based on the material presented).

If a question doesn’t specifically tell you to use additional information that isn’t presented in the passage, use only the information given. An answer may be incorrect in your opinion, but according to the passage, it’s correct (or vice versa). Go with the information presented unless you’re told to do otherwise and select the most correct answer choice.