• 11.18.13

What the GED Can Teach CEOs

Do computers help people think better? Based on data from the GED, the high school equivalency degree, it sure seems that way: On paper, 72% of students passed. On computers, 88% did. (Starting in January, the test goes all-digital.)

What the GED Can Teach CEOs
[Illustration by Alan Lewis]

Lesson for education:

Students think better when they pace themselves.


“They were able to focus better because the computer delivers one question at a time, and they weren’t overwhelmed by all of the questions and the bubble sheets,” says CT Turner, director of public affairs for GED Testing Service.

Lesson for business:

Employees train better when they pace themselves.

“The use of technology in the workplace is moving to 24/7 availability, allowing people to spend less time away from working, to essentially a model in which they are learning all of the time,” says David Metnick, managing director at Accenture.

About the author

Erika, an editorial intern at Fast Company, is a Brooklyn-based writer/Midwest transplant who's forever on the hunt for the perfect pair of headphones. She also manages her own music website, Band Bombshell, featuring local acts in New York City and Des Moines and has previously written for DIY magazine,,, Kitchen and Bath Ideas, and wrote a feature on compact tractors for Living the Country Life.