The state of Massachusetts uses two options for high school equivalency testing: the GED® (General Education Development) exam and the HiSET (short for High School Equivalency Test), developed by Educational Testing Service (ETS).
Massachusetts High School Equivalency Testing Requirements
- In Massachusetts, the minimum age for HSE testing is 18, but 16 or 17-year-olds may also qualify if they have permission from their school district and a parent or guardian.
- Applicants must be Massachusetts residents.
- Applicants cannot be high school graduates or follow some other educational program.
In Massachusetts, the fee for HiSET testing (on paper or on a computer) is $100 for the entire set of five tests. GED testing is slightly more expensive. The GED modules can be taken separately but need to be completed within two years.
GED scoring takes place on a 100 to 200 scale. The minimally required score on each GED subtest is 145. High school equivalency score: 145-164; college-ready score: 165-174; college-ready plus college credit score: 175-200.
The HiSET tests are measured on a scale that goes to 20 and the passing score on each of the five tests is 8. You must attain at least a 2 for your essay and the total result must be at least 45.
You need to go to the website GED.com and set up your account with the portal MyGED where you can schedule your tests and make payments. the contents of the GED and HiSET exams are pretty similar so you may very well take a GED prep course to get ready for the HiST as well!
Both tests measure the knowledge of adults at a level that compares to that of high school students at the time of graduation.
The GED is completely computer-formatted whereas the HiSET is still available both on a computer and on paper. The new GED exam contains four modules, or individual subtests, that cover the academic subject fields of Science, Social Studies, Mathematical Reasoning, and Language Arts (writing and reading combined). The HiSET exam has five subtests as the Language section comes with separate reading and writing tests.
The new GED exam is modular. This means the four subtests can be taken one at a time but all tests must be dealt with in a time frame of no more than two years. Both the HiSET and the GED are challenging examinations.
In Massachusetts, you can find many locations where (often free) classes are offered that will help you to get ready for the HiSET or GED exam and nowadays, online courses also offer decent prep options.
Holders of the Massachusetts HSE (high school equivalency) degree will surely qualify for better work options and they can make some $10.000 more annually than workers who don’t have the degree. The credential also qualifies students for further education at college or university.
Please bear in mind that there is NO online GED or HiSET testing option. To earn your HSE diploma, you must come in person to one of Massachusetts’state-designated HSE testing sites and please don’t forget to bring a valid ID. Outdated or non-photo IDs will never be accepted! As the tests are difficult, proper preparation is paramount and regardless whether you go to a prep class in a traditional setting or follow a good online prep course, you just need to get properly prepared if you want to be successful at the tests.