High School Equivalency (GED®)

The path to opportunity starts here

ACC provides free classes to help students earn a High School Equivalency (HSE) certificate — commonly known as a GED®. Classes are offered at various times and locations and are taught by instructors focused on your individual needs. Practice tests and study aids are available to boost your test-taking confidence.

 

Apply online

If you are 19 years old or older and you have a Social Security number, you can apply for HSE classes online.

Apply Now

If you receive an error when entering your Social Security number, refer to the frequently asked questions below. If you don't have a Social Security number or you would like help completing the application, you can apply in person at an Adult Education Office at ACC’s Highland or Eastview campus.

Apply in person

If you are 16 to 18 years old, or if you would like help completing the application, you can sign up for HSE classes in person. All applicants must have a government-issued photo ID that includes their date of birth. School IDs or copies of IDs are not accepted. Bring your ID and any required documents to an Adult Education Office.

If you are 17 or 18 years old, you must provide a copy of a withdrawal letter from the last school you attended (if in Texas) or a letter from a parent if you were home-schooled, along with one of the following:

  • Parent/Guardian Consent Form
  • Court order
  • Proof that you live separate from parent/guardian (utility bill in your name, marriage license, or rental agreement)
  • Attestation of Homelessness

If you are 16 years old, you must provide a copy of an official court order and photo ID. A withdrawal letter and parental consent documents are not required with a court order.

Individuals with F1 (student) and B1/B2 (business/tourism) visas are not eligible for this program. If you have a question about your visa, contact the Adult Education office at 512-223-5123.

Choose your classes

After you apply, you will take a free TABE® placement test to help us place you in HSE classes that fit your abilities. An Adult Education specialist will help you choose and register for HSE classes that work with your schedule.

Accommodations for students with disabilities

Students who are eligible for special accommodations must provide applicable documentation of their disability in advance. View Disability Documentation Guidelines. For questions or assistance, contact an Adult Education office.

Resources to help you succeed

Take advantage of an array of services and resources to help you reach your goal. View Adult Education Student Support to learn about tutoring, free Capital Metro passes, and more. View HSE Resources for study aids and other helpful tools.

Frequently asked questions

How do I know if I am eligible for the High School Equivalency program?
Students who are at least 16 years old and have not earned a high school diploma from a school in the U.S. or another country may take HSE courses. Students under age 19 must submit additional approvals.

Do I have to enroll in HSE classes to take the exam and earn an HSE certificate?
No, you don’t have to take HSE classes to take one of the three state-approved tests to earn a high school equivalency certificate. Contact ACC’s Highland Campus Testing Center or Round Rock Campus Testing Center to schedule your test. Even if you think you are prepared for your HSE test, you should consider taking HSE classes for access to study aids, scholarships, dedicated advisors, and more.

Why do I get an error when entering my Social Security number on my application?
If you have applied to an ACC program before, you previously have been issued a student ACCeID number. To locate your ACCeID, go to the ACCeID Manager and enter your information. Use your ACCeID to continue your application.

If I have already passed some of the GED® test, can I just focus on the subjects I haven’t passed?
If you passed parts of the GED® test before January 2014, your scores are no longer valid and you will need to take the revised test. Also, if you passed portions of the GED®, your scores may not be high enough to achieve the required total passing score. Taking classes for all test subjects can help you raise your overall test score.

If I am having a hard time in high school, should I leave and take the HSE test or HSE classes instead?
This should be addressed on a case-by-case basis. HSE exams are not easy and students who have not passed the Texas STAAR exam may find them difficult to pass. Also, 16- to 18-year-olds must have required approvals.

How do 16-year-old students obtain a court order to attend?
A county judge may issue a 16-year-old an order to attend HSE classes or take the HSE test. It typically is only ordered if the judge believes it is no longer viable for the student to regularly attend their district high school. This could be a result of attendance issues, criminal conduct, or other reasons.

What are HSE classes like?
HSE classes cover all subject areas and are matched to students’ reading level. Teaching methods include lectures, small group discussions, and self-directed study.

Where can I find when HSE classes are offered?
View a class schedule on the HSE Class Schedule page. Be aware that the schedule is subject to change.

How long will I need to take classes?
You may attend HSE classes for as long as you need to prepare for and pass your HSE exam. Students stay in HSE classes from three months to six years, with the average being around one to two years.

What if I have passed the GED® exam, but I lost my certificate? 
If your HSE certificate was issued in Texas, contact the Texas Education Agency to obtain a duplicate.

If English is not my first language, but my goal is to earn my HSE certificate, should I go to ESL or HSE classes first?
The Adult Education office can help you find the class that is best for you. If you are a lower-level English speaker, beginning in ESL classes might be best. ACC offers a Spanish HSE class, as well as a transition class for higher-level ESL students who want to get their HSE credential.