How the HiSET® Exam is Scored

Scores for the HiSET® exam are provided on a rolling basis. Results are transmitted to the state or jurisdiction as they become available. Computer-delivered tests require roughly three business days for multiple-choice tests and five business days for essay tests. Scoring for paper-delivered tests is dependent on receipt of properly submitted documents from the test center.

Understanding scores

HiSET scores are reported on a 1–20 score scale in 1-point increments. There is a set passing score of 8 for each of the five subtests and a combined score of 45 to pass the HiSET exam, however some states set different passing scores. Test takers must also achieve a minimum score of 2 on the Language Arts – Writing essay to pass.

Research has shown that 60 percent of graduating high school juniors and seniors would pass the HiSET exam with these set minimum scores. This is based on a national probability sample of high school juniors and seniors. The HiSET minimum scaled scores are empirically based.

The HiSET exam also reports a College and Career-Readiness (CCR) score. A CCR score of 15 on each multiple-choice subtest and a 4 on the Language Arts – Writing essay demonstrates college and career readiness.

Multiple-choice test scoring

Multiple-choice answer sheets are scored by machine, which gives virtually 100 percent scoring accuracy. Each correct answer is worth one raw point. The total raw score is the number of questions answered correctly on the full test. The scaled score is then computed from the total number of raw points in a way that adjusts for the difficulty of the questions on a given test.

Essay test scoring

Each essay response is scored by trained, supervised scorers who follow strict scoring procedures. Written responses to each question are read and scored by two or more qualified scorers specifically trained to score the responses to that question.

Viewing and printing scores

Scores are available online in the form of printable reports. To view their scores, test takers should sign in to their accounts and go to the View Scores page. You can also help test takers access their scores, either by walking them through the process, or by signing in to your HiSET account for administrators. Through your account, you can view scores or print official Comprehensive Score Reports for any test taker who has taken at least one subtest at your center.

How are scores sent?

Each year, we deliver millions of score reports to institutions, test takers and other recipients in many different formats by a variety of means. Test takers, test centers, and adult educators can access HiSET scores through their online HiSET accounts. HiSET scores will be transmitted to state officials automatically, and sent to authorized Designated Institutions at test takers’ request.

Each test taker will be given access to two score reports.

Comprehensive Score Report

One of the score reports that test takers will get after taking their HiSET exam is the Comprehensive Score Report. This will include the cumulative record that lists the highest score for each subtest and will indicate if the test taker passed the HiSET exam.

It is updated each time they take another subtest if the score improves, and tells if the test taker met the three HiSET passing criteria of scoring at least 8 out of 20 on each subtest, scoring at least 2 out of 6 on the essay secton, and scoring at least 45 out of 100 on all five HiSET subtests.

Individual Test Report

The other report that test takers will get are Individual Test Report. They will get one for each subtest that they complete, and it will show their subtest scaled score result, and if the test taker passed with a CCR score that indicates they are ready for college or a career.

After the HiSET exam

After successful completion of the HiSET exam, passing test takers will receive their state-issued high school equivalency credential from their state or the diploma vendor selected by the state.

This high school equivalency credential is portable, meaning it is valid and accepted in all states regardless of where it was issued. This credential is also accepted by the military and employers across the nation.