What Your High School Equivalency (HSE) Credential Means

You did it!

The HiSET® exam is rigorous and requires a lot of preparation and study. Though you didn't graduate as a teenager from a traditional high school, you showed that you are dedicated and focused enough to put in the work and earn your HSE credential. It's worth just as much as a diploma or a recognized equivalent. Don't let anyone tell you any differently.

Know your strengths.

If you learn how to interpret your HiSET scores, you'll have a better sense of what you should do after the test.

Your scores allow you to compare your performance to actual student performance. If your total score is 45 or higher, you would be in approximately the top 40 percent of graduating high school seniors! How well you do on the exam can help you to decide if you want to continue your education or focus more on building a career first.

If you scored at least a 15 out of 20 on any of the subtests, you've shown that you're college and career ready. This means that your performance is similar to the minimum level required to succeed in college-level, credit-bearing courses. If you plan to attend college, this can help you figure out what kinds of classes you might do best in.

Know how to talk about your credential.

When meeting with employers or college admission staff, they may ask you if you have a GED®. Many people — even employers — aren't aware there are other options available to earn your high school equivalency credential, and, like the HiSET exam, the GED® is another way test takers can earn their state-issued high school equivalency credential.

If you get asked that question, the best response is:

"No, I have a state-issued high school equivalency credential. Currently, the GED® is one of three possible tests that lead to a high school equivalency credential. Depending on the state you live in, there can be multiple pathways to earning a state-issued high equivalency credential. I took the HiSET exam to earn my credential."

For more information, see Recognized Equivalent of a High School Diploma.