FAQs About HSE

What Is A High School Equivalency (HSE) Certificate?
Adults who did not earn a high school diploma have another way to demonstrate high school equivalency by passing a series of tests in either Spanish or English to earn a California-issued certificate.


Who Can Take The HSE Exam?
High school equivalency (HSE) exams are designed for out-of-school youth and adults of any age without a high school diploma.


Which Test Do I Take?
The HiSET®, GED® and TASC™ exams are three tests that measure high school equivalency skills. California offers all three tests and you decide which test you wish to take. They are very similar but each test has its own guidelines, regulations and scoring procedures. All three exams are approved and accepted in all 50 states for educational and employment purposes. For details, visit: www.cde.ca.gov/ta/tg/gd/hsecertltr.asp


Where Can I Take The Test?
Saddleback College has a HiSET® Testing Center that offers exams on the first Friday and Saturday of every month. The cost for each subtest is $24. You must pass all five HiSET® subtests (Reading, Writing, Math, Science, Social Studies) to earn your high school equivalency certificate. Make your HiSET® test appointment at www.hiset.ets.org.


Do I Need To Take Classes To Take The Test?
You are not required to take HSE classes, but we highly recommend that you visit Saddleback Adult Education to get a proper assessment on how close you are to passing the HSE exams. Our FREE preparation classes are designed to ensure students pass all sections of the HiSET, GED, or TASC exam. 


How Long Will It Take to Get My HSE Certificate?
You can study at your own pace! How long it will take for you to pass the entire set of subtests depends on you. For some people it takes a month; for others it can take up to a year. Factors that affect how long it takes, include:

  • your level of education;
  • how much time you have to study;
  • how quickly you want to take the test: you can take one subtest at a time or all five on the same weekend of the month at Saddleback College;
  • whether or not you pass each subtest on the first attempt.