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A. GED Test Preparation

The objective of the GED courses is to help you prepare to pass the GED Tests, which measure your knowledge in five- (5) different areas: language arts, writing, social studies, science, language arts, reading and mathematics.  An important feature of the GED Tests is an essay that documents your ability to write and communicate effectively. These tests usually require some preparation on your part. The battery of five GED Tests takes 7 hours and 5 minutes to complete.


Test Area

Number of Questions

Time Limit

Language Arts, Writing, Part I


75 minutes

Language Arts, Writing, Part II

1 essay

45 minutes

Social Studies


70 minutes



80 minutes

Language Arts, Reading


65 minutes



90 minutes

Under the new GED guidelines for the 2003 English GED test, the candidate must earn a minimum score of 410 points on each of the five parts of the GED test and all five parts must add up to a minimum total of 2250 to receive a "passing score" and earn a New York State High School Equivalency diploma.

The more prepared you are the better you will do on any test You probably have gained some knowledge and skills thorough life experience, reading, and informal training, but remember that the GED Tests are a rigorous battery of five tests that take more than seven and a half hours to complete in two days. You have to get accustomed again to taking timed tests. Regardless of your ability, you’ll be more certain to perform your best on the tests if you know what to expect before the testing day arrives and if you study and attend classes every day, participate and take notes in class. Furthermore, if organize your time to allow you to study regularly at home , library or some other comfortable space where you will read and practice the skills for the GED Tests, this will improve your readiness.  Try to avoid any distractions and try to get support from your family and friends to help you concentrate on your work. 

Each CEC class will prepare you for all areas of the GED Tests using a combination of GED books, handouts, and the computer. Once every six weeks or so, the teacher will administer Official GED Practice Tests, which are designed to evaluate your readiness to take the full-length GED Tests. These Practice Tests include half of the number of questions found on the GED Tests and they include sample questions that cover the knowledge and skills. The teachers will use the results of the Official GED Practice Tests to determine if you are ready to be scheduled for the official GED Tests. In order to be recommended for the GED Tests, you must score an average of 500 – with a total score of 2,500.  This requirement takes into consideration that the Official Practice tests contain fewer questions than the full-length GED Tests.  What is also important is that the results of the Practice Tests will help you and the teachers get a sense of your weaker subject areas for further practice and study.

B. College Enrollment

1. Applying to College

CUNY Catch students who would like to attend LaGuardia or another CUNY school should speak with a counselor in the office (C238).  To be eligible to attend college you must have your GED and your transcript and you must apply. We also recommend that eligible students complete financial aid forms to cover the tuition and other costs. There is a $40 application fee, which must be submitted with your completed college application. Your work on the CUNY Catch career and college planning activities will help you decide on a career of interest and an appropriate college major.

2. Entrance Testing Policies

Once you are accepted by the College, you will be scheduled for Freshman Skills Assessment Program (FSAP) Tests. The FSAP is a series of tests in reading comprehension, mathematics and language and writing skills. These tests will be used to assess how ready you are for college level academic work. Based on the results of these tests, you may be required to take remedial or developmental courses to strengthen these basic academic skills. Once you have completed coursework in these areas, you will be tested again on another version of the test. Successful retesting certifies your academic skills and this will be an important part of your academic record.

3. College-wide Grading Policy

At LaGuardia Community College, all students are encouraged to achieve their highest potential by acquiring knowledge and developing skills that lead to success both in the classroom and in the modern workplace. Academic progress is measured by the students’ mastery of the course as demonstrated by their ability to write clearly and accurately, discuss, compute, analyze and draw logical conclusions among concepts. All students are expected to prepare for and attend class regularly, to complete assignments thoroughly and on time, and to participate thoughtfully and constructively in class discussions. Further information on grading is contained in the college-wide attendance policy, plus and minus grading policy, departmental grading policies and course syllabi.

C. Employment Assistance

The program hopes to integrate career planning and computers in its academic courses with the use of the CareerZone website (www.nycareerzone.org).  CareerZone is a free, career exploration and planning system designed especially for New York State students. The CareerZone website brings together multiple sources of career and labor market information to make career exploration and planning for the future a little easier. The CareerZone system is a product of the New York State Department of Labor and is currently hosted by AT&T.

The CareerZone System provides you with information on 900 occupations from the new O*NET Database, the latest labor market information from the NYS Department of Labor and interactive career portfolios that connect to the NYS Education Department Career Plan initiative. Links to college exploration and planning resources will help you begin your journey and 300 career videos will provide you with a visual glimpse into the workplace. CareerZone will also provide you access to up-to-date job postings and basic job preparation tools such as a resume builder, reference list maker and cover letter application.

You will be able to explore occupations, use an assessment tool to link their interests to potential careers, view some of the 300 career videos available and register for a free career portfolio account.

If you are interested in finding a job, you can use the CareerZone skill checklist to explore jobs and view up-to-date job postings in America's Job Bank. In addition, you can prepare yourself for the labor market with quick and easy-to-use resume, cover letter and reference list builders in CareerZone.
Many colleges, public libraries, community organizations and juvenile detention facilities use CareerZone as a resource in their career development programs.

D. Supplementary Activities

1. Field Trips

Class trips are an integral part of our educational program, reflecting our efforts to fully utilize the resources of the greater New York area. Trips are a logical outgrowth of the curriculum and students are encouraged and expected to participate. Whenever students leave the building for a school sanctioned activity they should remember they represent CUNY Catch and that they should be on their best behavior.  For each trip you will be assigned a homework project. You will be notified of any scheduled field trips as early as possible.

2. Recreational Activities

The program plans to schedule activities in the winter and spring for all students depending on the availability of funds and with the approval of the NYC Department of Education.  Once these activities are considered, students will be asked to assist in the planning.

3. Student Newsletter

The program will ask student representatives from each class to form a Student Newsletter Committee with the responsibility for publishing a newsletter at least twice during the year. A CUNY Catch staff member will be assigned to this committee to serve as an advisor and the office will provide resources and any technical assistance needed.

E. Support Services

1. Counseling Staff

The CUNY Catch office staff includes a Guidance Counselor, a full and a part time Transitional Counselor who will be responsible for working with you on resolving issues, which will interfere with your attendance and progress in the program, preparing and scheduling job interviews, and enrolling in College or vocational training programs.

2. Metro Cards

If you are under the age of 21 and provide the documents listed below, the program will provide you with metro cards. Proof of new address must be submitted for students who have moved since the last school year. Any utility bill can be used to verify change of address. To be eligible for Metro Cards you must also meet the following other criteria:

  1. You live more than 1/2 mile but less then 1-1/2 miles from the school (for a half fare card).
  2. You live more than 1-1/2 miles from the school (for a full fare card).

If you live less than 1/2 mile from school, you are not entitled to a Metro Card.

Metro Cards should be kept in a safe place at all times. The NYC Board of Education makes all decisions on students' eligibility for Metro Cards. After the passes/cards have been issued, the student is responsible for the transportation pass/card. If you lose your Metro card, you must report the lost card immediately by calling the CUNY catch office at (718 482-5128.  The program will make every effort to get you a new card as soon as possible.

3. College Photo ID

The program will make arrangements for you to receive a photo College ID. You are required to display your ID. Therefore, it is important that you secure this document and wear it as long as you are on the College premises. A fee of $10 will be charged to you to replace Your ID must

F. Evaluations

You will receive a Progress Report twice during the school year: January and June. Otherwise, teachers will provide you with regular feedback on your progress after quizzes, GED Predictor and other tests.  Your attendance and your completion of homework will be important factors of how well you will perform on the academic tests.  Your participation in classes as well as your behavior will also affect your success in the program.

In December and in May, you will be asked to evaluate the overall CUNY Catch program anonymously. The purpose of this evaluation is to provide the program staff with feedback on what you like most and least and what recommendations you have to make the program better.

The program will make an effort to have students use the CareerZone Website to develop student ePortfolios where they will be able to include their test scores, resumes, career and college exploration results, special class projects and a self-assessment of their own progress in the CUNY Catch program.


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