GED Alternatives: HiSET and TASC

The GED (General Educational Development) is a high school equivalency diploma. It is awarded to students who finish high school the traditional way. But Thomas Jefferson Adult and Career Education is working to offer 2 GED alternatives – HiSET and TASC:


HiSET stands for High School Equivalency Test. It is an alternative to the US HS certification and the GED and TASC test. The test was developed based on the OCTAE College and Career Readiness Standards for Adult Education. It is regulated by the ETS and provided in collaboration with the appropriate state or territory authorities.

High school dropouts and adults in the United States and its territories who do not graduate from high school can obtain a high school equivalency (HSE) certification using the HiSET test. Applicants must demonstrate that they have the same skills and knowledge as high school graduates. After passing the test, candidates are issued a high school equivalency certificate or high school equivalency certificate by the appropriate state or jurisdiction in which they took the test.

The HiSET exam measures proficiency in 5 core subject areas: Language Arts – Writing, Language Arts – Reading, Mathematics, Social Studies, Science.

Each state or jurisdiction has its own testing requirements and policies. Retesting fees and rules sometimes change. In addition, some states have minimum age restrictions or state residency requirements. Some states require candidates to complete a preparatory course before taking the exam.

States that accept the HiSET: California, Colorado, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Wyoming.

The passing score is 45 out of 100. The cost of the HiSET test is around $90 but prices vary by state or jurisdiction.


The TASC (Test Assessing Secondary Completion) is a national high school equivalency (HSE) assessment that measures readiness for college or workforce. The TASC test measures high school equivalence and college and career readiness in five subject areas: Language Arts – Reading, Linguistics – Writing, Mathematics (Numbers and quantity, Algebra, Functions, Geometry, Statistics and probability), Social Studies (History of the United States, World History, Civil and Public Administration, Geography, Economy), and Science (Physics, Life Sciences, Earth and Space Science). The entire test lasts about seven hours, each section has its own time limits.

The test is administered by Data Recognition Corp. and was created by McGraw-Hill Education.

Cost varies by testing center, but the minimum price is around $50.

States that accept the TASC: California, Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Mississippi, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Texas, West Virginia, Wyoming.

The passing score is at least 500 in each subject area.