Maybe you are looking for a new job. Maybe you want to attend college. Whatever your reason for returning to education, obtaining your GED is a perfect opportunity to demonstrate your academic abilities. Even though a high school diploma and a GED both signify to future employers and college admissions that you have achieved a certain level of scholarly knowledge, there are major differences between the two. Decide what best fits your future educational needs and start moving forward to the next phase of your academic career!
High School Diploma vs. GED: Time is a Factor
One of the major differences between a high school diploma and a GED is the time each takes to complete. While a high school diploma takes up to four years to achieve, a GED may be obtained in as little as seven hours (not including study time). Many adult learners find that GED prep fits much more easily into their daily schedule than regular high school courses.
Diploma vs. GED: Age Requirements
Age requirements differ between high school and GED diplomas. You can earn a high school diploma if you are younger than 18, but most students have to be 18 or older to take the GED. However, each state has special circumstances that allow a student to test if they are underage. A few other things to consider: high school graduates and students currently enrolled in high school are not permitted to take the GED exam.
Diploma vs. GED: Future Plans
A GED and a high school diploma are mostly seen as equivalent, but not quite. Depending on the type of job, many employers do not care if applicants have a high school diploma or a GED certificate. But there are some that do. Certain employers will not hire GED graduates, so you may want to research company policy before sending in a resume.
Most community colleges welcome GED holders. However, if you wish to attend a prestigious 4-year university or college, you may want to consider earning your high school diploma. If that is not possible, think about spending a year or two enrolled at a community college. Demonstrate your academic skill and capability, then apply to the 4-year college of your choice!
Whether you return to school for a high school diploma or decide to earn a GED, congratulations on completing a significant step in your education. Every class taken or hour you spent studying will be well worth it when you successfully pass your last exam!