Can you go to college without a high school diploma or GED?

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John Apalla

Dropping out of high schoolhouse may feel similar the terminate of your educational journey, but there are some colleges that don’t require a high school diploma or GED.

If you’re ready to give academics a endeavor once again, yous can start looking effectually for programs that don’t take high school requirements for admissions.

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Getting started in college can be more complicated with no GED or HS diploma, but information technology is possible. With the right approach to starting your college career, you lot can motility step by stride toward earning a caste.

Colleges That Don’t Crave a Loftier School Diploma or GED

Colleges without High School Diploma

Can you get into higher with a GED? Yes, you lot can go to higher even if you never graduated from loftier school! There are
colleges that take a GED, but yous may not even need to get a GED diploma first. Some colleges will let yous get started right away.

Community colleges can be a skillful place to begin your search for programs that don’t crave loftier schoolhouse diploma. They oftentimes accept more than flexible archway requirements than iv twelvemonth universities.

A community college may offset you lot off with placement exams so that y’all tin be put in classes that friction match your academic level. Some customs colleges even allow you lot work on a GED and college studies at the same time.

After completing your community college classes, you might find it easier than before to get into a four yr school. Plus, your customs college credits can oftentimes count toward a bachelors degree programme.

Trade schools tin be another option for college hopefuls without high school diplomas. Yep, there are
trade schools that don’t require a diploma or GED.
Like community colleges, trade schools often accept less-stringent admission requirements than universities.

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At a trade school, you can receive specific training for a hands-on field, such as welding or healthcare. At the end of your program, yous’ll probable receive a document. Vocational coursework doesn’t always transfer to another college, but information technology may authorize y’all for a license or a skilled chore.

In some cases, you may accept other higher options available to you as well. For instance, some universities are more than flexible with not-traditional students—people who take been out of high school for at to the lowest degree vi years. Assembling a work portfolio that demonstrates your potential tin help you with this approach.

Other schools permit students without degrees to enroll in individual classes. This usually means taking one form per semester and non counting the credits toward a degree. Test scores can be another fashion to prove what you know. If you lot have high Human action or Saturday scores, some colleges will let you lot in even though you lot don’t have a diploma.

Passing tests from the College Level Examination Program (CLEP) can even help you earn college credits before always stepping foot in a university classroom.

How to Go to College with No High School Diploma or GED

getting into College with No High School Diploma

Getting into higher without a diploma or GED starts with finding the right programme. Here’s how y’all tin go about finding the program that’s right for you lot.

  1. Call up about your goals. What do you want to written report? Once y’all’ve identified a career goal, it may be easier to narrow down your search for schools.
  2. Wait for schools with flexible admissions requirements. Community colleges and vocational schools in your local surface area tin can be a great place to showtime. Online classes from community colleges elsewhere in the land may be another option. You can also check with iv-twelvemonth schools. Go on your optics open for the word “non-traditional” in the admissions requirements. That’s sometimes a positive sign.
  3. Take placement tests. Colleges that admit no-GED students desire you lot to succeed. Starting yous off in the right classes is ane footstep in that procedure. Placement tests are a tool that some colleges use to decide whether y’all’d benefit from take hold of-up courses.
  4. Remember most getting high school credentials. Some trade or community colleges offer programs that allow you lot to get loftier school and college credits at the aforementioned fourth dimension.
  5. Consider further education. Going to community higher may be only your first step. Later on graduation, y’all might be able to transfer to a 4-year school for a bachelors degree.

One time you’ve identified a potential higher, y’all can reach out to the admissions office. You’re not the outset person to be in this situation, and an admissions counselor has the experience to guide you through the procedure from beginning to end.

Admissions Requirements

college Admissions Requirements

If yous don’t have a GED or a high school diploma, what documentation tin can assistance you become into college? Y’all may exist asked to turn in materials like the following:

  • Placement tests. These help colleges know what your first classes should be.
  • Proof of birthdate. You may need to be at least eighteen years old to become into higher without a diploma.
  • Standardized tests. SAT or ACT scores may provide clues to your potential.
  • Work portfolio. Essays, reading lists, or projection examples can showcase your cognition or abilities.

These requirements tin vary from one school to another. For case, not all colleges ask for Sabbatum or Act scores.


college accreditation

If yous don’t have a diploma or a GED, you might be tempted to sign up for a college that has no admissions requirements whatsoever. Those types of programs, though, may not produce workforce-ready graduates.

Fifty-fifty though you lot didn’t graduate from high schoolhouse, you shouldn’t settle for a program that’s below quality standards. How can you lot tell if a school is doing things right? You can look for institutions with regional accreditation.

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Holding regional accreditation gives a school a good reputation. Reputable higher credits may transfer to other colleges, and a degree from an accredited college is respected more by potential employers.

Financial Aid and Scholarships

college financial aid

Without a high school diploma or a GED, your financial assist options may be more express. That doesn’t necessarily mean that y’all’ll have to pay all of your tuition out of pocket, though!

Y’all may qualify for the federal government’s Ability to Benefit (ATB) plan. If so, you might be eligible for grants. An ATB program may apply to you if yous enroll in a Championship IV programme that’s designed to go you set up for a career. Other requirements can involve passing an ATB examination or earning at least 6 college credits.

To learn more most your eligibility for federal assistance, y’all can fill out the Free Application for Federal Educatee Aid (FAFSA). You can look at non-government student aid sources too. Some employers will assist their team members pay for college. Y’all can also try applying for scholarships.

Professional Organizations for Loftier School Dropouts

Professional Organizations for High School Dropouts

One time you lot’ve decided to go dorsum to school, information technology’southward benign to have plenty of support to assistance you through the process. There are organizations whose mission is to provide the assistance that you’ll demand.

  • Gateway to College
  • Job Corps
  • National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC)

An skilful from ane of these groups may provide guidance nearly the next steps yous can have. These organizations might also connect you with programs for completing your loftier school studies, getting job training, or earning higher credits.

What Is a GED?

General Educational Development

General Educational Development (GED) is a credential that shows you know what high schoolers should know.

If yous didn’t graduate from high school, passing the GED exams can be another mode to earn a diploma. Finishing your GED might help you enroll in college or pursue a job. Earning your GED requires taking four unlike tests. The exams will cover math, linguistic communication, science, and social studies. After passing all 4, y’all tin get your GED.

Is a GED the Same as a Diploma?

A GED credential is known as a high school equivalency diploma. It’s not issued by a high school, just it shows that your knowledge is comparable to that of a 12th-form graduate.

Yous tin often use your GED credential just similar you would a high schoolhouse diploma. Many colleges accept the GED in place of a HS diploma, especially if you lot have skilful Sat or ACT scores. Also, employers usually make no distinction between GED credentials and high school diplomas.

Do Colleges Accept High School Dropouts?

GED credentials

Just because you dropped out of school doesn’t hateful that yous have to give up on higher. A large majority of colleges accept students who have GED credentials. Glowing references or strong Human action or SAT scores tin can also bolster your awarding packet.

If you don’t have a GED either, at that place may notwithstanding be higher opportunities for you. Some trade schools or colleges with GED programs let you lot to earn a GED and college credits at the same fourth dimension. By the time you consummate this type of program, you’ll have both a high schoolhouse diploma and workforce training.

Tin You Go to College Without a High School Diploma?

Yeah, you can go to college without a high school diploma. Though about universities require high schoolhouse equivalency, this is not e’er the case, especially at community colleges and trade schools.

Can You Get Financial Help Without a Loftier Schoolhouse Diploma or GED?

There are financial aid opportunities that tin can help people who haven’t finished high school.

Through the Ability to Benefit (ATB) program, you might exist able to get Pell Grants from the federal government. To take reward of ATB, yous’ll offset enroll at an eligible school and fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

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You can look elsewhere for aid too. For example, you lot may find scholarship programs that are designed especially for people who didn’t cease high school. Your employer might fleck in equally well if your piece of work has a tuition reimbursement program.

What Is Ability to Do good?

GED vs. Diploma in High School

Power to Benefit (ATB) is a federal program that helps students who don’t take high school diplomas or GED credentials. Through ATB, qualifying students may qualify for authorities financial aid.

To participate, it’s necessary to enroll in an eligible program. Eligible programs generally have to be designed to go y’all ready for a career. Additional requirements include passing an ATB test or demonstrating your college abilities by earning at least 6 credits.

If you think ATB might be right for you, you can talk to your school’s financial help section for more data.

What’south the Divergence Between a GED vs. Diploma in High School?

High schoolhouse diplomas and GED credentials are the two main means to show that you have 12th-grade noesis.

High School Diploma GED
  • Earned by passing high schoolhouse classes
  • Issued past local loftier schools
  • Thought of every bit standard for admission to virtually colleges
  • Earned by passing 4 competency tests
  • Issued past the GED Testing Service
  • Used as an culling credential for admission to many colleges

Many workplaces have both high school diplomas and GED credentials.

Tin I Do Online College Without a GED?

GED requirements

Yep, you may be able to become into online colleges without high school diploma or GED requirements.

In general, good online and on-campus colleges have similar admissions requirements. To get into a reputable higher without a GED, yous might demand to take the Act or Saturday, provide references, or gear up a portfolio that showcases your work.

A community higher is generally a strategic place to outset your no-GED college experience. Some customs colleges also offering online classes.

Is College Worth It?

Earning college credits

Aye, a college degree is worth it for many students. Earning college credits can typically help you earn college pay or secure greater job stability. According to the Agency of Labor Statistics, unemployment is highest amidst people without high school diplomas. The unemployment rate for that grouping is 5.4%.

The rate of unemployment drops to 3.3% for those who have taken a few college classes. Graduates with an acquaintance degree accept only a 2.7% unemployment rate, and for those with a bachelor’s degree, the charge per unit is merely ii.two%.

Universities That Don’t Require High School or GED

Methodology: The following school list is in alphabetical guild. To be included, a college or university must be regionally accredited and the universities do non require a high school diploma or GED equally part of the admission requirements.

Key Community College

Central Community College

Central Customs College offers access to students without high school diplomas or GEDs. Applicants who are 16 years old or older may utilise for the GED program to earn a loftier school diploma or apply for one of the programs.
The developed teaching classes offer free tutoring for math, reading, and writing but do not offer financial aid.

Cardinal Community College is accredited past the Higher Learning Committee.

College of Cardinal Florida

College of Central Florida

The Higher of Key Florida offers special admission to students without a high schoolhouse diploma or the equivalent.

Students must pass the Examination of Adult Basic Education along with other program requirements to graduate. There are remediation options bachelor for students who receive unsatisfactory scores on the test.

The College of Primal Florida is accredited past the Southern Clan of Colleges and Schools Committee on Colleges.

Colorado Higher

Colorado College

Colorado College does not require a high school diploma or GED to be admitted to the school.

Applicants must supply information about what they have studied and the competency levels they have in those fields. An application essay about intellectual and extracurricular achievements, 3 letters of recommendation from non-family members, and Saturday or ACT scores must as well exist submitted.

Colorado College is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission.

Colorado State University

Colorado State University

Colorado State University offers access to applicants without high school diplomas.
Applicants must have completed a test-out equivalent, such as the GED, HiSet, or TASC. The examination-out scores, Human activity or Sabbatum scores, a personal statement, an academic explanation, recommendations, and loftier school transcripts must exist submitted when applying.

Colorado Land is accredited past The Higher Learning Commission.

Columbia Greene Community College

Columbia Greene Community College

Columbia Greene Community College offers admission to applicants who don’t have high school diplomas or the equivalent.

Applicants must be 17 years old or older and provide proof of withdrawal from high school. They likewise need to complete a placement exam. Before applying, applicants should connect with an admissions counselor to review the awarding procedure.

Columbia-Greene Community College is accredited by the Heart States Commission on College Education.

Community College of Baltimore County

Community College of Baltimore County

The Community College of Baltimore County offers an External Diploma Program for mature students interested in receiving a high school diploma.

The program does not require students to take courses in classes but instead is self-paced.Applicants must exist 18 or older and are required to complete pre-resting to demonstrate class nine level math and reading skills.

The Customs College of Baltimore County is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Teaching.

El Camino College

El Camino College

El Camino Higher offers free GED and High Schoolhouse Equivalency programs to assistance those who did non complete loftier school gear up to receive a diploma.
The schoolhouse offers rolling admission and accepts applications year round. Those interested in the programs must submit their official transcripts from the concluding high schoolhouse they attended.

El Camino College is accredited by the Accrediting Committee for Community and Junior Colleges.

Gateway Community and Technical College

Gateway Community and Technical College

Gateway Community and Technical Higher offers access to applicants without loftier school diplomas. These applicants must take plans to receive a GED.
Act or COMPASS scores must be submitted before applicants can be enrolled. Students who do non have high school diplomas are not eligible for financial aid or an associate’s degree.

Gateway Community & Technical College is accredited past the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Hinds Community College

Hinds Community College

Hinds Community College offers admission to students who do non have high school diplomas through the MIBEST program or Vocational Admissions.

The MIBEST program allows students to receive foundational skills for careers. Vocational Admissions allows applicants to be admitted into a program subsequently an interview with an advisor. They cannot apply for fiscal aid.

Hinds Community Higher is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Houston Customs College

Houston Community College

Houston Community College offers the Ability to Benefit program, which admits students without loftier school diplomas or GEDs.

Applicants demand to either laissez passer an approved Power to Do good examination or enroll in an approved career pathway plan. Those interested in the program may consummate an online awarding and the ACCUPLACER to determine eligibility for the program.

Houston Community Higher is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

Lamar Plant of Technology

Lamar Institute of Technology

The Lamar Institute of Technology offers access to applicants who don’t have high school diplomas or GEDs. Applicants are accustomed on an individual basis.
Applicants interested in either Associate of Arts or Acquaintance of Scientific discipline degrees must submit TSI Cess scores when applying.

Lamar Establish of Technology is accredited past the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Lawson State Community College

Lawson State Community College

Lawson State Community College offers admission to applicants who did not graduate high schoolhouse. Under the Power to Benefit program, students can enroll in courses but cannot receive an acquaintance’southward degree.
Applicants must apply for admission and so attend the Ability to Benefit assessment held by the school.

Lawson State Community College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Niagara Canton Customs College

Niagara County Community College

Niagara County Community College offers a High School Equivalency program which allows students the opportunity to complete 24 credits for an equivalency diploma. Students in the program are not able to receive fiscal aid.

To be eligible for the program, applicants must meet the minimum placement assessment score.

Niagara Canton Customs College is accredited past the Middle States Committee on Higher Teaching.

Oklahoma City Customs Higher

Oklahoma City Community College

Oklahoma City Community Higher offers access to students who have not caused loftier schoolhouse diplomas or GEDs. Applicants who are 21 years or older are not required to submit transcripts.
Students without a loftier school diploma, GED, or transcripts may not be able to receive financial assist.

Oklahoma City Community College is accredited past the College Learning Committee.

St. Charles Customs College

St Charles Community College

St. Charles Community College offers admission to students who have non received high school diplomas or GEDs.
Applicants must apply online and consummate an bookish skill assessment to determine eligibility. A coming together with an bookish counselor is required to decide if students should enroll in the adult basic education program.

St. Charles Customs Higher is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

Tidewater Customs College

Tidewater Community College

Tidewater Community College accepts applicants who have not received high school diplomas or GEDs. When applying, applicants must complete a placement test in reading, writing, and mathematics to determine if they are eligible for admission.
Students without high school diplomas are not eligible for financial aid.

Tidewater Community College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Committee on Colleges.

Union County College

Union County College

Union County College offers admission to students in the Power to Benefit programme. These students are not eligible for financial help. Additionally, students without high schoolhouse diplomas or GEDs are ineligible to complete an associate’s degree.
Students must consummate a placement examination after applying.

Union County College is accredited by the Centre States Committee on Higher Education.

Academy of California

University of California - Irvine

The University of California offers admission to students who have not received a high school diploma as long as they have a Certificate of Proficiency or a GED.
Though applicants don’t need to have a high school diploma, they must still accomplish the loftier school course and GPA requirements.

The Academy of California is accredited past the WASC Senior College and University Commission.

University of Hawaii Community College

University of Hawaii Community College

The University of Hawaii Community College accepts applicants who don’t have loftier schoolhouse diplomas or an equivalent every bit long as they are 18 years quondam or older.
Students who are between the ages of 18 and 21 may yet work towards obtaining their high school diploma, while those who are older may piece of work towards a GED.

Academy of Hawaii Community Colleges is accredited by the Accrediting Commission for Customs and Junior Colleges, Western Association of Schools and Colleges.

Wayne Canton Community College District

Wayne County Community College District

Wayne Canton Community College offers admission to applicants who don’t have high school diplomas or GEDs if they are 18 years old or older.
The school offers assistance with access, orientation, and registration. Applicants without loftier school diplomas or GEDs are not eligible for fiscal help.

Wayne Canton Community College Commune is accredited by the College Learning Committee.

Getting Your Higher Degree Online Without A HS Diploma or GED

College Degree Online Without A HS Diploma or GED

Information technology’s non also late to go a college degree. You can make plans to enroll in college classes fifty-fifty if you never graduated from loftier school or completed your GED. Yous can outset by checking out community colleges, vocational schools, or universities with flexible admissions policies. You may even earn high school credentials at the aforementioned time.

Even if your total-time job keeps you decorated, that doesn’t mean that you can’t get back to schoolhouse. Online courses can let to you to do your higher work at times that fit your schedule. With an accredited online program, a higher degree may be inside attain.

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