Social Studies

Studying social studies is not so different from reading the news. Social studies gives you context to understand the nation, the world, and society -- knowledge you’ll need in many jobs and in life.

About the test

The GED® Social Studies test measures your knowledge of history, geography, government, and economics. It is 70 minutes long and features 50 multiple choice questions. The content on the test breaks down like this.

  • History (Canada, 25%; World, 15%)
  • Geography (15%)
  • Civics and government (25%)
  • Economics (20%)

Try a sample question

Choose the best possible answer.

The history of the world is filled with stories of people migrating. Migration is the movement of people from one place to another as they seek a new home. Famine, overpopulation, limited resources, war, and religious and political persecution "push" immigrants to move to another country. Hopes for employment and a better life "pull" immigrants to new places.

Millions have migrated to North America since the 1600s. Spanish, French, English, and Dutch immigrants were the first European settlers to establish permanent colonies. They settled in lands originally populated by people from Asia. Many people from Africa were driven from their homes at this time to be enslaved to work in colonies in the Americas.

Throughout the 1800s, immigrants looking for employment came to North America from Japan, China, and southeastern Europe. In the 1970s and 1980s, Southeast Asians, Latin Americans, and Caribbeans migrated to North America. Many of these immigrants fled from war-torn countries, political persecution, and economic difficulties.

The government of a country may restrict the number of immigrants allowed to enter that country. These restrictions on immigration are most likely based on what belief?

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This application question requires you to focus on a universal immigration issue that is related to the information but newly introduced by the question. It is a general case of a concrete situation that faces all countries -- that is, the regulation of immigration to a country. The concept of scarcity (4) is the only logical reason for restrictions among the alternatives offered.

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