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State of Illinois High School Diploma (GED®/HISET®) FAQ


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What classes are offered to prepare students for the GED or HiSET exams and how much do the classes cost?

ECC offers free GED and HiSET exam preparation classes in English and Spanish. Classes in reading/writing and math are available. Higher-level reading/writing classes include science and social studies.

 
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When are classes offered? When do I start?

You can take English classes in the morning or evening on weekdays. They are available for Spanish classes in the evenings and on weekends. There are three semesters each year: August (early start)/September (late start), January, and April. You can start enrolling at any time. It's a good idea to begin enrollment at least four weeks before the semester you want to start.

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Where do classes meet?

Most classes meet in Building K on ECC’s Spartan Drive campus in Elgin. Off-site class locations may be offered. You can view the map here and there are also classes available online.

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How do I enroll in GED/HiSET preparatory classes?

Sign-up for classes using our online form 

Visit the front desk in Building K at 410 Renner Drive in Elgin. The front desk is open Monday through Friday. Note that the college closes on Fridays during the summer. Bring a photo ID (driver’s license, state ID, or government-issued ID). If you are 16 or 17, bring a letter of separation from the high school in your district. Bring your DHS medical card or LINK card if you receive public assistance. The next step is a free placement test. After completing testing, you will sign up for an upcoming orientation. Orientation is where you will learn important information about our program and how to register for classes; it is a requirement for all students.

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Why should I take GED/HiSET preparatory classes at ECC?

These classes are a great way to study for the GED/HiSET exams and to help you prepare for college. After completing one or more preparatory classes at ECC and meeting the requirements for State of Illinois High School Diploma, bring your official transcript to Building K, room K100. By doing so,

  • You will be invited to our State of Illinois High School Diploma graduation ceremony in May. 
  • You will be eligible for a tuition waiver for a 3-credit-hour class to continue your studies at ECC. (You must live in district or work full-time within the district.)
  • You may be may be eligible for a scholarship.
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If I pass the GED or HiSET exam, does this mean I am ready for college classes?

Check out GED and HiSET college-ready scores here if you are considering taking college classes. If you do not meet this requirement, you may need to take pre-college level courses and pay tuition for those courses. It is strongly recommended that you aim for college-ready scores.

 
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Is there a graduation ceremony?

Yes! ECC holds a graduation ceremony every May for students who complete one or more GED/HiSET preparatory classes at ECC and submit an official State of Illinois High School Diploma transcript to the front desk in Building K. Learn more about graduation

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How do I know if I am ready for the GED or HiSET exams?

You can take the exams anytime, but there is no guarantee that you will pass. Most people need extra help to get ready for the exams. If you take classes at ECC, your teachers will guide you in taking the exams. If you are in level 5, they will give you a free practice test indicating your readiness.

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How do I register for the GED or HiSET exams?

Information on registration, pricing, testing locations, and exam content can be found at ged.com or hiset.org.

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What is the State of Illinois High School Diploma?

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The State of Illinois High School Diploma is for people who did not finish high school the traditional way. Suppose you did not finish high school with your graduating class for any reason. In that case, you can still earn the credential another way by passing the GED or HiSET exams and completing an online module on the Illinois and US Constitutions.

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Where can I search for the appropriate Regional Office of Education for my county?

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State of Illinois High School Diploma candidates may find the appropriate Regional Office of Education to contact by searching the ROE locator.

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Am I eligible to take the GED or HiSET exam?

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To take the GED or HiSET exam, you must be at least 17 years old and have been a resident of Illinois for at least 30 days. Additionally, you cannot be currently attending high school, be a high school graduate, or have previously passed a GED/HiSET/TASC exam. If you are 17, you must submit a letter of separation from high school to test. Find more information here.
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How do I obtain my GED or HiSET certificate and transcript?

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The Regional Office of Education issues these documents in your county. A fee is required along with documentation that you have completed the Constitution module.
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What subjects are covered on the GED and HiSET exams? Are there additional requirements in Illinois?

The subjects covered are language arts, mathematics, science, and social studies. If you did not pass the Constitution test in high school, you will also need to complete the Constitution module offered through the state of Illinois. You must provide documentation if you passed the Constitution test in high school.

 
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How long are classes?

Depending on the semester and start date, classes range from 10 to 16 weeks long.
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Who is eligible for the GED/HiSET preparatory classes?

You must be at least 16 and not enrolled in high school. If you are 16 or 17 years old, you must provide a letter of separation from the high school in your district. You can view more information here.
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How do I get more information about GED/HiSET preparatory classes at ECC?

Please contact Rachel Taylor at 847-214-6948 or rtaylor@elgin.edu.

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How long will it take to prepare for the GED or HiSET exams?

Many factors affect the time it takes to prepare, including the students’ reading, writing, and math skills, motivation, and time available for classes and studying.

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Can I co-enroll in college classes while I’m pursuing my State of Illinois High School diploma?

This depends on the college class considered. Some classes have specific requirements that students must meet first. Please contact the adult education transitions coordinator for further information at 847-214-6904 or email at ABECregistration@elgin.edu.

 

 

 

 

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Contact

Adult Basic Education Center

Building K, Room K100
847-214-6904
Fax: 847-931-3919