HiSET: Frequently Asked Questions

  • GED Graduates in robes and caps, moving tassles You got questions, we've got answers.

    Below are the most frequently asked questions regarding the new GED/HiSET coming in 2014 from both students and teachers.

    Regarding the $60 registration fee, I understand that the $60 plus $35 covers the entire test, but if a student has to retake one test, do they pay another $60 plus $7? No, the $60 is good for 12 months.  A student only has to pay $7/section to retest.

    Will students still mail in an application for authorization?  Or will everything be done online with a debit/credit card? No mailed in applications will be accepted, everything will be online for most people.

    When will we know the locations of test sites?  A top priority in the coming months will be to identify the testing sites, but that will be ongoing.

    How much will practice tests cost? They will be free on paper and we think a “computer” version will be available for $7.50.

    What will the practice tests look like? We don’t know at this time.

    Will 2013 scores carry over to 2014? No.

    Will the process for accommodations change? Yes, but we don’t know how at this time.

    For scheduling the computer-based test, will students have the flexibility on dates and times as they do now?  Yes. Or will they move to a group test? Don’t have to.

    How long will it take for me to get my scores? If you took the computer-delivered test, you'll receive your unofficial score for multiple-choice subtests at the test center after you finish the test (except for the Language Arts — Writing essay). ETS will review and certify your scores and provide official scores within:

    • three business days for multiple-choice tests
    • five business days the Language Arts – Writing subtest

    If you take a paper-delivered test, scoring will happen as soon as ETS receives your answer sheets. It will take about the same amount of time to score, but if answer sheets are not sent promptly by the test center, your scores may take more time than what is stated above.

    Are the CBT results immediate, even the essay? Yes, for all but the essay.

    Is there a site that an instructor or student can visit to see a sample of what the new CBT looks like?  I'm wondering about the on-line calculator that a student should practice on. It can be found at http://hiset.ets.org/

    How will the 2014 HiSET differ from the current version of the GED? You can see samples at the Test-At-a-Glance at http://hiset.ets.org/

    How many times can you take the test? For both paper-based (PBT) and computer-based (CBT), three times in a calendar year – three forms each calendar year.  The CBT and the PBT use the same three forms per year, so together the test can only be taken three times in a calendar year.  For example, an examinee may take the test on paper two times and on the computer one time.  The scores would come together and that would be the maximum that examinee could test in that year.

    Will we use the HiSET name? We will be using HSE (High School Equivalency) and would prefer local programs do the same.

    How long will the scores be good?  We don’t know yet. We are still working with ETS to finalize some answers.

    Will an examinee who takes the GED Test in 2014 get a MO HSE certificate? No.

    Will ETS Scores look different than GED scores? The scores will look different than they do now.  They will be two digits, but similar in there being a “floor” score and a total required score to pass.

    How will this get out? We will have constant and varied communication with diverse constituents.  This will include press releases, webinars, emails, social media, conference presentations, etc.

    What will be the official calculator for the PBT? We don’t know.

    Will the certificate continue to have the state seal? Yes.

    Where can we find the price breakdown of the Missouri cost of the test? It is available in press release, which can be found at https://dese.mo.gov/adult-learning-rehabilitation-services/high-school-equivalency.

    Will the test be revised each year? Yes, for the next three years.

    Does Post-Secondary know what’s happening with the test? We will keep communicating with schools but they mostly look for the certificate, which we provide.

    How do I know if an individual has passed the HiSET battery of five subtests? Each of the five subtests in the HiSET battery is scored on a scale of 1–20. In order to pass one must do all three of the following:

    • Achieve a score of at least 8 on each of the five individual subtests
    • Score at least 2 out of 6 on the essay portion of the writing test
    • Have a total combined score on all five subtests of at least 45

    Some states may set passing scores that are higher, but under no circumstances can you pass with a total score lower than 45 on the battery.

    What does my individual test scoring report tell you? For each individual test scoring report, it indicates:

    • their score, the total possible score and whether they passed
    • the minimum score required to pass
    • the number you answered correctly & the maximum number of questions in each content category
    • If the candidate is college and career readiness score

    What does passing mean? Individuals who have received a passing score on the HiSET battery have demonstrated a level of performance that exceeds the minimum level of performance typically required to graduate from high school.

    How should I interpret my score? If the HiSET battery were to be administered to a random sample of high school seniors, it is estimated that approximately 60 percent would pass on the first attempt. If you receive a score of 45 or higher we estimate that you would be in approximately the top 40 percent of graduating high school seniors nationally.

    How are passing rates determined? A core equivalency table was established between the HiSET exam and a nationally administered high school equivalency examination. Passing rates (60 percent) were chosen so as to be roughly equivalent to those on the nationally administered examination.

    Did you demonstrate college and career readiness? Your individual test score report also indicates whether or not you have achieved the score required to demonstrate college and career readiness — with at least 15 out of 20 on any of the subtests.

    What does college and career readiness mean? Students who have scored at the college- and career-readiness level have shown a level of performance similar to the minimum level required to succeed in college-level credit-bearing courses. The HiSET exam has also been aligned to the Office of Vocational and Adult Education (OVAE) College and Career Readiness (CCR) Standards for Adult Education that were released in April 2013.And since the HiSET exam measures essential components of the CCR Standards for Adult Education and the Common Core State Standards (CCSS), it helps identify the areas where you are career and college ready. A score of 15 on each subtest demonstrates college and career readiness.