Expanding Opportunities. Changing Lives. The HiSET® Exam.

If you didn't finish high school, you know that your choices are limited. Even with talent and drive, the lack of a high school diploma can limit your opportunities.

By taking the HiSET® exam, you can earn a state-issued high school equivalency credential which you can use to advance your career, join the military, begin a training program or continue your education. Affordable, accessible and flexible, the HiSET exam is the fastest-growing high school equivalency test.

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What is a High School Equivalency (HSE) Credential?


Take charge of your future

In the United States and its territories, adults who left high school before graduation have another way to secure a high school equivalency credential.

What does that mean? It means that, through testing, you can demonstrate you have the same skills and knowledge as a high school graduate. And doing so can help you create a whole new future.

Once you pass the test, your state or jurisdiction will issue you a high school equivalency certificate or high school equivalency diploma.

How can the HiSET® exam help you get your HSE credential?

The HiSET® exam is one of three tests U.S. states and territories use to measure high school equivalency skills. The General Educational Development (GED®) and the Test Assessing Secondary Completion® (TASC™) are the other options. Some states offer only one of these tests. Other states offer all three tests and let you decide which one you wish to take.

What's important to know is this: All three tests allow you to earn your high school equivalency credential from your state.

ETS works closely with states to make sure the HiSET exam closely reflects the skills of a high school graduate and to provide a fair, rigorous exam. Why? We want you to have confidence in, and a sense of achievement with, your new credential.

Who Can Take a High School Equivalency Exam?


High school equivalency (HSE) exams are designed for out-of-school youth and adults without a high school diploma.

HSE exams have eligibility requirements. Like taking a driving test, you must meet these eligibility requirements before you can test. Requirements are determined by each state and usually involve:

  • Age: Most states have a minimum age for the test, but many also have exceptions.
  • School Enrollment Status: Most states require that you be officially withdrawn from school or involved in an Options, Youth Challenge, Job Corps® or other similar program to take a high school equivalency exam.
  • Residency: Some states require that you live in the state to take the exam there.
  • Practice Test or Instruction: Many states require adult education instruction before you take the exam.
  • Identification: A photo ID is needed to verify your identity and age on test day before testing can begin.

See your state's eligibility requirements >

Is the HiSET® exam recognized by federal programs?

Yes. The HiSET® program has worked with government agencies to make sure HiSET test takers can use the credentials they earn to meet federal education requirements, such as qualifying for federal student aid in the form of grants, loans and work-study funds or demonstrating HSE for government programs or groups. This includes:

  • Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA®)
  • U.S. Military
  • U.S. Department of Labor Job Corps Program