FAQs

FAQs

What's the difference between the GED and HiSET Exams?  Which one should I take?

 

 

Completion of either the GED or the HiSET will earn a Massachusetts High School Credential.  No matter which test you select,  a high school credential will open up doors for college,  and career paths.

 

Students should compare the tests to determine which is the better choice for them.  

 

 

 

GED and HiSET Comparison Chart

 

 

 

 

GED

 

HiSET

  Total Cost:

 

$125

 

$100

  Number of 

  Modules:

 

4

 

(Language Arts,  Math, Science, Social Studies)

 

5

 

(LA Writing, LA Reading, Math, Science, Social Studies)

  Total Test Time:

 

7 hours, 5 minutes

 

7 hours, 5 minutes

  Format:

 

Computer

 

(Paper as a Special Accommodation  only)

 

Paper and Computer 

 

Testers have the option to select either format for each test.

  

  Calculator:

 

Used for 3 Tests:

 

 

Math, Social Studies and Science

 

Used for Math Test only

 

  Writing

  Requirements:

 

 

 Language Arts Test:

 

The Extended Response is one of three timed sections. Testers will have up to 45 minutes to complete their response.   

 

 

Score for the Extended Response is calculated into the LA score.   

 

 

 

Science Test:

  

Contains 2 "Short  Response" Questions 

  

 

LA/Writing Test.

 

The Essay is one part of the Writing test.  You are allowed to go back and forth between the Essay and the multiple choice section throughout the test.  

 

 

 

 

 

You must pass the Essay with a least 2 points.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

No other test has a writing requirement.  

 

 

 

For specific questions about each test, please go directly to the vendor's website:

 

These sites cover information on: test content, preparation, registration, test appointments, applying for Special Accomodations and more.

 

 

When will scores expire?

 

The Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) has announced that all HiSET and GED scores will remain valid until at least December 31, 2020.  This includes HiSET scores that were earned between 2014 - 2016.

 

 

 

Are there special requirements if I am under 18 years old?

 

Yes.   If you are 16 or 17 years old, the Letter of Withdrawal from the last school you attended must be approved by DESE,  before you can schedule a testing appointment.  Go to  the  Massachusetts DESE website and follow the steps listed there.   

 

Do I have to take classes in order to take the HiSET or GED test?

 

No. Classes are not required, but our Learning Center offers them for Greater Lowell residents.  Our experienced staff can help students prepare and decide when they are ready to test.

 

 

What formats are available for the tests? 

 

  • For HiSET, we offer both paper and computer based testing.  You have the option to choose computer or paper for each subject test.  
  • The GED test is computer based only.

 

 

What languages are available for the tests?

 

Tests are only available in English for both HiSET and GED at this Test Center.  

 

 

 

Are Special Accommodations available?

 

 Yes.  Testers with documented disabilities or health related needs should apply directly to the test vendor to request special accommodations.  

  

When are the testing dates?

 

See our Testing Schedule for specific dates.

 

 

What identification can be used for the tests?

 

 

Only current, government issued photo ID will be accepted, including:   

 

 

  • Passport
  • Driver’s license from any state
  • State-issued ID card
  • National ID card
  • Military ID card

 


  *We can not accept photocopies, ID that has expired,  or ID that does not match the Account name.   You must bring your ID to each test session.*

 

 

What else do I need know before testing?

 

  

  • HiSET Candidates will need to complete a Massachusetts Eligibility form.   *If you are under 18, this form must also be signed by your parent or guardian.  (For GED candidates, the Massachusetts Eligibility Form is completed on-line during registration.)

 

  • It is helpful to bring your Test Appointment Confirmation.

 

 

  • The Test Center will supply all necessary testing items, including a handheld calculator.

 

 

 

  • Since there is  limited storage space available, we recommend you bring as few personal items as possible. Electronic items are not allowed in the testing area.  They will be collected and returned to you when you are finished.