High School Diploma Versus GED

What are the differences between traditional high school diplomas and GEDs? Is one of these better or more useful than the other? Learn the answers to these questions and more about both high school diplomas and GED certificates.

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What exactly are the differences between a high school diploma and a GED? Students may wonder why they should finish years of high school in pursuit of a diploma when a few tests can earn them a GED. Is one better than the other? Can a GED benefit a student?

A high school diploma usually requires a student to complete their curriculum at a traditional public school within three years after turning 18. In order to receive a diploma, students must complete coursework determined by the school district and state government. Curricula can vary between school districts and states, but students generally take four years to complete all diploma course requirements.

Most students who have a high school diploma qualify for entry-level jobs and typically earn more than those who lack a diploma. Students hoping to advance within a company may need additional college training. Many employers, colleges, universities, military branches, and law enforcement agencies prefer applicants with traditional high school diplomas rather than GEDs. However, there are some benefits to earning a GED.

GED are given to students who pass a series of tests given in five different academic subjects. In order to pass these tests, students must score higher than 60% of the sample set of graduating seniors. Typically, students must prepare thoroughly to pass all tests. Students who wish to take the GED must not have graduated from or still be enrolled in high school and must be over the age of 16. The exams take about seven hours to complete. Some students take preparation courses before taking the GED.

Many community colleges do accept applicants possessing a GED. Students who have difficulties completing high school, who don't have time, or who failed to complete high school may greatly benefit from the GED. It is the closest, most well-recognized equivalent to the high school diploma. However, it has limitations, and not all institutions and academic organizations consider it sufficient for admission or employment.

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