Options and Choices for Underserved Adults

High school completion: the big picture

The good news is high school dropout rates have been in decline in the United States for more than 40 years. In 1972, the dropout rate was 14.6 percent. By 2014, the status dropout rate was down to 7.1 percent. Despite these gains, 3 million students leave high school each year before earning their diplomas.

  • 8,300 students drop out of U.S. high schools every day.
  • Cumulatively, about 39 million adults in the United States do not have a high school credential.

The personal and societal effects of high school non-completion are powerful and can be overwhelming. Compared to high school diploma holders, those who drop out of high school face:

  • higher rates of unemployment, poverty and incarceration
  • lower wages, lower lifetime earnings and lower tax base contribution
  • higher reliance on social welfare programs

Developed by the only nonprofit testing organization in the high school equivalency testing market, the HiSET® exam was created as a mission-based program — an accessible, reasonably-priced and well-supported program that provides true options for underserved adults and out-of-school youth striving to earn this credential and improve their lives.

Affordability: just the beginning

Affordable test fees keep the HiSET exam within easy reach for test takers, states and educational programs. The HiSET exam is more than just affordable — it also provides test takers with clear options to keep them in control of their test taking process, such as:

  • Bilingual customer service support, including a secure, mobile-friendly test management system
  • Flexible scheduling options, such as the option to schedule subtests over time and a generous test retake policy
  • Payment policies that respect low-income money management methods, including PayPal® options and a voucher program
  • A choice of computer- or paper-delivered formats
  • A Spanish-language version to address the needs of candidates who are more comfortable testing in Spanish
  • Accommodations for test takers with disabilities or health-related needs, handicap accessible test centers and test site support
  • Free and low-cost test prep materials, including online practice tests and other instructional supports
  • Immediate unofficial score results on computer-delivered, multiple-choice tests, except for Language Arts – Writing
  • Official score reporting within three days of receipt for multiple-choice tests or within five days of receipt for essay tests
  • Post-test College and Career Opportunities Report for local career suggestions and postsecondary education opportunities for test takers

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