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GED Research and Policy

Step 2: Reflect on this research and your practice

After reading the articles, reflect on the following questions:

  1. What were the key points of these articles?
  2. What evidence did they give to back up the findings?
  3. What were the strengths and weaknesses of this evidence?
  4. Which of the findings or practices did you find surprising or intriguing? Why?
  5. How might the findings or practices in these articles be applicable to your context?
  6. What questions might you like to ask the researcher, John Tyler, about his research?

Now read this letter by John Tyler to see whether or not your questions and/or concerns are addressed.

"Letter to the Editor." John Tyler, Focus on Basics, Volume 2, Issue C, September 1998.

In response to criticism and issues raised in response to his article, “The GED: Whom Does It Help? Results from a New Approach to Studying the Economic Benefits of the GED” (Focus on Basics, Volume 2, Issue B, June 1998), Tyler clarifies what his research explains about the impact of GED credentials on the earnings of young, white dropouts, ages 21-26, who passed the test with minimal requirements but not on the earnings of young, minority youth with similar scores. With the data collected, Tyler cannot establish employer discrimination as a factor, but states that this possibility warrants closer examination. Tyler notes that some research indicates that minority dropouts are employed and financially rewarded in jobs where skills matter. Due to the design of data collection for GED candidates, he explains that his data is limited to two categories, white and minority.

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Reflect on the following questions: