High School Equivalency

What is a High School Equivalency?

According to the United States Department of Education, high school equivalency tests help individuals 16 years of age or older who are not currently enrolled in school “to obtain the equivalent of a high school diploma and, subsequently, to gain employment or begin postsecondary education or training.” Such individuals may include:
  • Those who found that traditional high school settings do not accommodate their needs
  • Those who decided to drop out of high school
  • Migratory workers (or children of such workers)
For many years, the GED® test was the only state-approved high school equivalency. As of 2014, states can offer as many as three options for earning a high school equivalency. The TASC Test Assessing Secondary Completion™ was created through a partnership between Data Recognition Corporation and each state. This high school equivalency test offers students the flexibility to test at any location, online or on paper.

The Diploma Myth

According to Barbara Nordberg, the Associate Dean of a Technical College in Wisconsin, some students mistakenly assume they can complete a high school diploma from their last high school by passing their high school equivalency test. However, that is not true. Regardless of which high school equivalency test you choose, you cannot earn a high school completion diploma this way. If you did not graduate from high school, you can earn your high school equivalency rather than your diploma.

Earning a High School Diploma

Students interested in earning their high school diploma, rather than a high school equivalency, should contact their state’s Department of Education for more information. Requirements vary across states, but students are often required to complete at least two years of college level work for their high school to honor transcripts and award a diploma.

Advance your life and step into a better future with the TASC test. Earn your high school equivalency.