What is GED ®? Guide to the General Educational Development Test

Many people ask us, “What is GED?” The GED® diploma shows that you have the same knowledge as someone who completed high school in the USA. Getting your GED® diploma can help you be more successful. It can get you a better job and allows you to go to college. This page will help you answer the question, “What is GED?”

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Photo: iStock/Andres R

What is GED®?

The GED® test is a test of your knowledge. Passing the GED® test shows you have the same knowledge and skills as a person who graduated from high school in the USA. Learn everything you need to know to answer the question, “What is GED?”

Why is it important?

Many Americans and some refugees and immigrants were not able to finish high school. Without a high school diploma, it can be hard to get a good job and succeed in the USA. But if you pass the GED® test, you get a diploma (certificate) from your state. It is called a high school equivalency (HSE) diploma, so you may sometimes see or hear your test referred to as an HSE test.

The GED® diploma says you have the same skills as someone who completed high school. This is a big accomplishment! Not only will you gain an education, but you will have better job choices.

What is the GED® test like?

The test take several hours. It is divided into four parts that you can take on separate days. You will take the test on a computer. You can take the test in English, Spanish, or French.

What’s on the test?

There are four subjects on the test: social studies, science, math, and language arts (reading and writing). You will answer many questions and write an essay.

What shall I do now?

You can study for the test. You can also find out how to take the test.

How should I study for the GED® test?

USAHello’s free online GED® classes cover each subject on the test. You can start a class whenever you are ready. Most students finish one subject within two weeks to two months. You can start and stop anytime. You can retake lessons. You can choose which subject you want to start with.

smiling male graduate with yellow tassel
کلاسهای مجانی ®GED یا دیپلم تحصیلی عمومی

برای گرفتن مدرک GED®, TASC, or HiSET آنلاین درس بخوانید تا بتوانید به دانشگاه بروید یا کار بهتر پیدا کنید.

به کلاس بروید

Does my state offer the GED® credential?

You cannot take the GED® test in every state. Look at this table to find out which test is offered in your state.

If your state does not offer GED® test, it’s okay! You can still get a diploma that is just as good. You can take the TASC test or the HiSET test in your state. Look at the table again to see which one.

What is HiSET™?

The HiSET test is like the GED® test. The HiSET™ diploma says you have the same knowledge and skills as someone who completed high school in the USA.

What is TASC?

The TASC test is like the GED test. Passing the TASC test shows you have the same knowledge and skills as a person who graduated from high school in the USA.

How do I take the GED® test?

To take the tests, you have to go to a testing center. The tests will be on a computer.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: Many GED® testing centers have cancelled tests because of COVID-19. In June 2020, the GED® Testing Service announced it would use online testing for some students. If you are eligible for online testing, you will receive an email from the GED® Testing Service. See the GED® website for more details. Only the official GED® Testing Service can test you. If another website says they can give you a GED diploma, it is not true!

Free GED® practice test

Take a practice test to see if you are ready to pass the tests now, or if you want to study more before you sign up.

GED® preparation classes

Study all four topics to prepare for the GED® test.

How to take the GED® test

Find the information you need to register for and take the GED® test. When you have passed all four subjects, you will receive a diploma.

I have a diploma from another country. Should I still get a HiSET, TASC or GED® credential?

If you have a high school diploma, you may or may not need a HiSET, TASC or GED® credential. But you may need proof you finished school to go to college or get a job. If you do not have proof, getting a diploma in the USA will help you.

Do you have scholarships for the GED® test?

No, we do not have any scholarships for GED® tests.