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High School Equivalency Test (HiSET®)

The specific purpose of the HiSET® exam is the measurement of the educational development of adults who have not completed their formal high school education. Adults may earn the State of Illinois High School Diploma and thus qualify for admission to colleges or other educational institutions, meet educational requirements for employment or promotion, satisfy educational qualifications for induction into the armed services, fulfill requirements of local or state licensing boards, or gain personal satisfaction.


An individual is eligible to take the HiSET® exam given they meet all of the following conditions:

  • 18 years of age or older*
  • does not have a high school diploma or high school equivalency credential and is not currently enrolled in a secondary school
  • is a resident of the State of Illinois

Note: *If an individual is 17 years old and has been enrolled in a public, private, or a home school setting in the last 12 months, they must present a withdrawal letter from the last school enrolled in before taking the HiSET® exam. If homeschooled, they must also provide a letter from the person responsible for the homeschooling [e.g., instructor, tutor, parent, guardian, etc.] stating the program has been completed, the individual is no longer required to be homeschooled, and the individual has been cleared to take the HiSET® exam.  Proof of withdrawal can be emailed to HSE@Illinois.gov or faxed to 217-558-6700.



You can register online to take the HiSET® exam at hiset.ets.org. Although registration is done online, the tests will actually be administered in paper/pencil format or on a computer at an official HiSET® testing site that you select during registration.  Testing fees must be paid at the time of scheduling.

For more information regarding registration, review the Illinois HiSET® Requirements or contact Educational Testing Service at 1-855-694-4738 (1-855-MyHiSET).



The cost to take the HiSET® exam varies based upon the format in which the test is taken (paper/pencil or computer).

The computer-based HiSET® exam is $18.75 per test module. A total of 5 test modules comprise the HiSET® exam, meaning the full HiSET® battery, if taken entirely on computer, costs $93.75. Testing fees must be paid online at the time of registration.

The paper-based HiSET®  exam is $23 per test module. A total of 5 test modules comprise the HiSET®  exam, meaning the full HiSET®  battery, if taken entirely on paper, costs $115.

Candidates may mix and match the paper-based and computer-based formats.

Testing fees must be paid online at the time of registration. Testing sites are unable to take payment for exams directly from test takers on test day.



The HiSET® exam consists of five content areas:

Language Arts – Reading (65 minutes)

Format: 40 multiple choice questions

Language Arts – Writing (120 minutes)

Part 1 – 50 questions, multiple choice

Part 2 – 1 essay prompt

Mathematics (90 minutes)

Format: 40 multiple choice questions

Science (80 minutes)

Format: 40 multiple choice questions

Social Studies (70 minutes)

Format: 40 multiple choice questions

Tests are administered in English and Spanish

You can test three times on each subject without waiting. After the third attempt, you must wait until the next calendar year.



Not all individuals can be fairly tested under standard conditions. If you have a documented learning, physical or emotional disability, you may qualify for accommodations for a HiSET® test administration. If approved, accommodations are provided at no additional charge.

For information on how to request accommodations for the HiSET® exam, visit http://hiset.ets.org/take/disabilities or email disability.reg@ets.org.

Accommodation forms and supporting documentation can be sent to ETS by:

Mail: ETS Disability Services
P.O. Box 6054
Princeton, NJ 08541-6054

Email: disability.reg@ets.org



HiSET® preparation classes are offered free of charge at local adult education programs. For more information call 1-800-321-9511 or you can visit the Program Locator. HiSET® study materials are also available at hiset.ets.org/prepare/overview.



Illinois Constitution Requirement

As of July 1, 2022, the Constitution requirement for awarding the State of Illinois High School Diploma returns.

Please contact your local Regional Office of Education* for more information about the Constitution module.

*Cook County residents should contact the Cook County HSE Records Office at 312-814-4488 or by email at HSE@Illinois.gov