The HiSET ® test is a five-subject high school equivalency exam that measures the academic knowledge relative to that of a high school graduate. The exam covers five content areas: Language Arts — Reading, Language Arts — Writing, Mathematics, Social Studies, and Science. Learn more about the HiSET® test here.

*Many people need to take classes before they are ready to take the GED, HiSET, or TASC tests. To find classes near you, search the National Literacy Directory. Practice tests, such as this one, are available online to help too.

Why Take the HiSET® Test

When asking why you should finish your diploma, the answer might simply be that without it you could have a difficult time finding a job. Depending on where you live, your state may offer the HiSET® test as the main high school equivalency test. Millions of adults in the U.S. did not graduate from high school and are eligible to take the HiSET® test.

The HiSET® test first became available in 2014, and is now offered in a number of states across the U.S. The test measures academic knowledge in the subjects of Language Arts — Reading, Language Arts — Writing, Mathematics, Social Studies, and Science.

Individuals preparing to take the HiSET® test range in age from late teens to senior citizens, and they span a wide variety of backgrounds. Many participants learn English as a second language.

The HiSET® test may be relatively new, but many forms of testing assistance are available, from local adult education centers to printed resources that should be available at your library. In some cases, financial assistance can be made available if you're taking the test.

Your local adult education center can help you with the process and is the best place to get started with the HiSET® test. To get started, use the ZIP code finder above to find a center near you.

How to Study for the HiSET® Test

Studying for the High School Equivalency Test (HiSET®) is an important step in completing what could be a lifelong goal. In order to receive a passing grade on the HiSET® test, studying is very important.

Many adults can feel overwhelmed at the prospect of studying for a test. Perhaps it's been some time since being in school, or maybe studying has not been easy in the past. Here are five general tips for studying for the HiSET® test:

  1. Dedicate a specific amount of time each day to studying. This can be in the evenings after work or early in the morning — whatever works best for you.
  1. Divide your study time into 15-minute sections: some for reading the practice material, some for reviewing the material once you've read it, and another period for taking practice tests.
  1. Don't try to cram the studying into one extended session. Studies show that a person's ability to focus lessens after 45 minutes, so it's important to break up study periods into manageable sections.
  1. Try to visualize real-world examples of the lessons in your studies. For example: If you are trying to remember a math equation and you have worked in retail or as a cashier in the past, think of a time when that equation would have applied to your position.
  1. Establish a support network of family and friends who are positive and support your success. Surrounding yourself with positive energy and cheerleaders is key to reaching your goal.

To get started, use the Directory to find a local adult education center — they'll help you every step of the way!

Interpreting the Test Results

Congrats on taking the HiSET® test! Now that you have your score, let's talk about what it means.

The HiSET® test contains five subtests: Mathematics, Science, Social Studies, Language Arts — Reading, and Language Arts — Writing. In addition to the subtests, you must complete an essay.

The goal of the test is to compare the subject knowledge of test-takers with that of high school graduates. Each subtest contains a score ranging from 0 to 20, meaning a total score of 100 is possible. To pass the HiSET® test, you must score at least 8 out of 20 on each subtest and a minimum of 2 out of 6 on the essay.

Takers of the HiSET® test will receive both a Comprehensive Score Report as well as an Individual Test Report. The former will contain the cumulative record of the highest scaled score for each subtest.

The Individual Test Report will break down each subtest in terms of items correct and incorrect, as well as an individual performance summary by individual competency.

In case you don't pass the HiSET® test the first time, you can take two free retests within a 12-month period.