GED Cost: What You Need to Know About Exam Fees

Pursuing your GED (General Educational Development) certificate is an important step towards achieving your educational and career goals. However, many people might be concerned about the GED cost and whether they can afford it. In …

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Pursuing your GED (General Educational Development) certificate is an important step towards achieving your educational and career goals. However, many people might be concerned about the GED cost and whether they can afford it. In this article, we’ll address the costs associated with earning your high school equivalency through the GED test, as well as options for reducing these expenses.

The cost of taking the GED test can vary depending on your location and whether it’s administered through an official testing center or an online proctored platform. On average, the total cost for all four subject area tests (math, social studies, science, and language arts) ranges from $120 to $160. Keep in mind that these costs are subject to change and might not include fees for study materials, practice exams, or online classes.

It’s important to remember that you may be eligible for discounts, fee waivers, or financial assistance that can lower the costs of obtaining your GED. Some states and testing centers offer discounted retakes and free or low-cost prep materials, while non-profit organizations and community programs provide financial aid to eligible test takers. So, before worrying too much about your GED test’s cost, take the time to explore all available resources and options to make the process more affordable.

Understanding GED Costs

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When considering the GED test as an alternative to a traditional high school diploma, it’s essential to understand the costs involved. The GED cost varies depending on the state and the testing center, but we’ll help you navigate these expenses.

The GED test (or General Educational Development test), developed by the American Council on Education, is composed of four subject area tests: Language Arts, Math, Social Studies, and Science. Each test is taken separately, and passing all four tests awards the high school equivalency credential.

To take the GED, you’ll need to register at an official testing center or choose the online proctored testing option. The cost for each subject area test ranges from $30 to $40. For all four tests combined, the total cost can range from $120 to $160. Some states and testing centers may also charge additional administrative fees.

Here’s a quick summary of GED cost components:

  • Language Arts: $30-$40
  • Math: $30-$40
  • Social Studies: $30-$40
  • Science: $30-$40
  • Additional administrative fees (vary by location)

To help offset the cost, some states and GED testing centers offer discounted retakes for students who don’t pass on their first or second attempt. Don’t forget to contact your chosen testing center beforehand to inquire about discounted rates or any fee waivers available.

For online proctored GED testing, you may have to pay slightly more than the paper-based test, as proctoring fees are typically added to the usual cost.

In some cases, test accommodations can be provided for students with disabilities. If you require accommodations, you’ll need to submit documentation and request approval through the GED Testing Service.

If you’re still enrolled in an accredited high school or have been out of school for a while and need extra support, there are online classes and test prep materials available. Some students may qualify for free or low-cost classes depending on their financial situation or the program they’re enrolled in.

Keep in mind that the total cost of obtaining your GED also includes any additional expenses for study materials, transportation to testing centers, and other potential fees. Proper budgeting for these expenses will help you ensure a smooth testing experience and successful completion of your high school equivalency credential.

The GED credential is widely recognized by employers, colleges, and the military as a valid alternative to a high school diploma. Investing in your GED test can open doors to higher education, better job prospects, and increased earning potential over time. With this knowledge of GED costs and potential fees, you’ll be better prepared to take the next steps towards your goal of becoming a high school graduate.

Factors Affecting GED Pricing

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When looking into GED cost, it’s crucial to consider the various factors that affect pricing. Understanding these elements will help you make an informed decision about pursuing a high school equivalency diploma.

First, the GED test itself is designed and administered by the GED Testing Service, an affiliate of the American Council on Education. The test consists of four subject area tests: Language Arts, Mathematics, Science, and Social Studies. Now, let’s delve into the factors that can impact the cost.

  • Location: The fees for the GED test vary depending on the state in which you’re planning to take the test. Some states offer lower prices, while others may charge more. For example, in California, the cost for all four tests is $140, while in some other states, the price might be different.
  • Test Format: The GED test can be taken either in a computer-based format at an official testing center or as an online proctored exam. The cost might differ between these formats. Generally, the computer-based test fees are higher than those for a paper-based test.
  • Retakes: Most students may need to retake one or more subject tests to pass the GED successfully. GED Testing Service offers discounted retakes for up to two attempts per subject. The third attempt and any further retakes will be at the full price.
  • Test Accommodations: Students with disabilities may require test accommodations, and in some cases, these accommodations might come with additional costs. It’s important to understand what is covered and what you might need to pay extra for when requesting accommodations.
  • Preparation: While some students may choose to prepare for the GED test on their own, others may opt for online classes or enroll in a traditional classroom-based program. These preparation methods might vary in cost.
  • Alternative exams: In certain states, the HiSET exam is available as an alternative to the GED test for earning a high school equivalency diploma. The HiSET exam fees might differ from the GED cost, so it’s essential to compare them if both options are accessible in your state.
  • Age Waivers: Some states provide waivers or discounts on the GED or HiSET test fees for students who meet specific age requirements.

In conclusion, it’s crucial to research the GED cost, available testing centers, alternative exams, and possible discounts before registering for the high school equivalency test. Doing so will ensure you have a clear understanding of the expenses involved and help you make an informed decision about pursuing this diploma.


Understanding GED cost is crucial when you’re planning to take the GED test, which is designed to provide a high school equivalency diploma, recognized and accepted by colleges and employers. With various options and accommodations available, the total cost will depend on your location and specific testing situation.

As a test taker, it’s essential to consider the following:

  • The GED Testing Service sets a standard test fee, but these fees may vary by state or testing center. Be sure to research your local test center’s pricing.
  • The test consists of four subject area tests: Math, Science, Language Arts, and Social Studies. Subject tests might be paid for individually or as a package deal.
  • Online proctored tests and paper-based tests are available, with the former being more prevalent. Visit an official testing center for in-person testing or consider the online test option, but remember that not all testing centers offer paper-based tests.

Keep in mind that online classes and test preparation resources may come with additional costs. However, there are free resources available to supplement your knowledge and help you study for the test. Some testing centers may also offer discounted retakes after a third attempt, which may provide relief to test takers in need of multiple attempts to pass all four tests.

Financial accommodations might be available for eligible test takers, as well as test accommodations for students requiring extra support due to specific needs. Military personnel and their spouses may access free GED testing in some states, like California.

So, by considering these factors and understanding the costs associated with your individual needs, you’ll be better prepared to invest in your education and achieve your goal of earning a high school equivalency diploma. Research and compare the costs at various accredited high schools, as well as the possible testing accommodations to make the most informed decision before registering for the GED test.