Adult basic education offered at Fox Valley
Sally Thiede is the Adult Basic Education instructor at the Chilton Center of Fox Valley Technical College.

For adults who have always wished they had gotten their high school diplomas, Fox Valley Technical College’s Chilton Center campus (FVTC-Chilton Center) can provide the path to success.

One-on-one instruction is offered for students in a wide range of ages and abilities. No matter why or when our students’ education was interrupted, they are welcome to continue learning at the Chilton Center.

In order to get a high school equivalency diploma (GED or HSED), adult students (18-1/2 and older) must go through the technical college system to register and receive an educational assessment, known as TABE (Tests of Adult Basic Education). This step is important for students because it indicates their proficiency, is used to measure their improvement and identifies areas where they need additional study. TABE also determines the program’s effectiveness and provides statistics that ensure funding to keep the adult education program tuition-free for students.

The TABE assessment is in two parts. Locator Tests cover Reading, Mathematics, and Language—all three areas can be completed in about 35 minutes. Locator Test results will determine the appropriate level of TABE test the student will take. The TABE test is the next step, and covers Reading, Math Computation, Math Applied, and Language—25 questions in each section.

From there, students can study with an instructor in a classroom setting at the Chilton Center, or at home with an instructor’s guidance, or completely online. Students who demonstrate an advanced level through the TABE can begin preparing to take their GED (General Education Diploma) tests. The instructor will help students identify their educational weaknesses and begin their test preparation in those areas.

When students are ready to test for their GED, the tests must be taken at the Chilton Center or at another technical college location. Four academic areas are tested—Reading/Language Arts, Science, Social Studies, and Math. Although there are no fees for the program, GED testing costs $33.75 per test. Unfortunately, there are many “completely online GED” scams advertised on the internet. Prospective students should be aware that these claims are false—the only true path to a GED is through the Technical College System. The Chilton Center offers GED testing every month.

Students in the HSED (High School Equivalency Diploma) program will work on reading, writing, communication, math, science, and social studies, either in a classroom setting or independently in a lab setting. They will work through a book in each of these subjects matched to their level of ability. HSED students do not have to take tests. They also take Health, Civics, and Employability skills classes.

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