GED (HiSET) in Iowa

Iowa has dropped the GED® exam for its HSE (High School Equivalency) testing program. The GED exam was becoming too expensive and available only totally computer-based.

The state now offers the HiSET exam developed by nonprofit organization ETS. There are many locations where HiSET prep classes are available that will get you all geared up to take the HiSET test confidently.

The state now offers the HiSET exam developed by nonprofit organization ETS. There are many locations where HiSET prep classes are available that will get you all geared up to take the HiSET test confidently.

Online testing is NO option

The HiSET diploma will certainly improve job options and open up doors to colleges and universities. The HiSET exam, like the GED, is not available online, you will have to show up in person at an Iowa HiSET (GED) testing site. Upon passing the HiSET exam you are awarded the High School Equivalency certificate or diploma. The HiSET contains five subtests in the fields of Science, Social Studies, Language Reading, Language Writing, and Math.


The Iowa High School Equivalency diploma is all over America accepted as equivalent to a high school diploma by businesses, employers, and government agencies. Getting the diploma is absolutely important for persons who never completed high school.

HiSET preparation classes are offered at these locations in main Iowa areas.

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GED (HiSET) prep classes in and around (click on your nearest city):

GED (HiSET) eligibility requirements

Age: you need to be 19 years old (for those 16, 17 or 18, there are strict regulations, contact your nearest testing site).
Fee: $50 for the computer-based format.
There is NO Iowa residency requirement.
Iowa requires you to pass the official practice test first.
You don’t hold a high school degree and are not in another school program.

Free GED Online Classes

GED (HiSET) testing centers in Iowa

Des Moines Area Comm. College, 2006 S Ankeny Blvd, Ankeny, IA 50023, 515-287-8700
Cass Co. Center at Iowa Western – 705 Walnut St, Atlantic, IA 50022, 712-325-3441
Des Moines Area Comm. College – 1125 Hancock Dr, Boone, IA 50036, 515-287-8700
Northeast Iowa Comm. College – 1625 Hwy 150, Calmar, IA 52132, 563-562-3263
Des Moines Area Comm. College – 906 N Grant Rd, Carroll, IA 51401, 515-287-8700
Cedar Rapids
Kirkwood Comm.  College – 1030 5th Ave SE, Suite 100, Cedar Rapids, IA 52403, 319-784-1510
WITCC/Cherokee Campus – 200 Victory Dr, Cherokee, IA 51012, 712-274-6400
Clinton Comm. College – 944 Lincoln Blvd, Clinton, IA 52732, 563-244-7001
Southwestern Comm. College – 1501 Townline St, Creston, IA 50801, 641-782-7081
Eastern Iowa Comm. College District – 627 Wt Second St, Davenport, IA 52801, 319-326-5319
WITCC/Denison – 11 N 35th St, Denison, IA 51442, 712-274-6400
Des Moines
DMACC Urban Campus – 1100 7th St, Des Moines, IA 50314, 515-287-8700
Des Moines Area Comm. College – 800 Porter Ave, Des Moines, IA 50315, 515-287-8701
Iowa Lakes Comm. Coll./Emmetsburg  – 3200 College Dr, Emmetsburg, IA 50536, 712-852-3554
Ft. Dodge
Iowa Central Comm. College – 1 Triton Cr, Ft. Dodge, IA 50501, 515-574-1959
Shelby Co. Ctr – 2712 12th St, Harlan, IA 51537, 712-325-3441
Iowa City
Learning Ctr Iowa City | 1810 Lower Muscatine Rd | Iowa City | IA 52240| 319 . 887 . 3656
Iowa Valley Comm. College District – 3702 S Center, Marshalltown, IA 50158, 515-752-4645
Mason City
North Iowa Area Comm. College – 500 College Dr, Mason City, IA 50401, 888-466-4222
Mt. Pleasant
SCC – Mt. Pleasant Ctr – 200 N. Main St, Mt. Pleasant, IA 52641, 319-752-2731
Muscatine Comm. College – 152 Colorado St, Muscatine, IA 52761, 563-288-6161
Southwestern Osceola Ctr – 2520 College Dr, Osceola, IA 50213,641-342-3531
Indian Hills Comm. College – Grandview & N. Elm, Ottumwa, IA 52501, 641-683-5111
Peosta Campus NICC – 10250 Sundown Rd, Peosta, IA 52068, 563-562-3263
Red Oak
Southwestern Red Oak Ctr – 2300 N 4th St, Red Oak, IA 51566, 712-623-2541
Northwest Iowa Comm. College – 603 Wt Park, Sheldon, IA 51201, 712-324-5061
Page/Fremont Co. Center – 1001 W Sheridan, Shenandoah, IA 51601, 712-325-3441
Sioux City
W Iowa Tech Comm. College – 4647 Stone Ave, Sioux City, IA 51102-5199, 800-352-4649
Storm Lake
Iowa Central/Storm Lake  – 916 N Russell St, Storm Lake, IA 50588, 712-749-5179
Washington Learning Ctr – 111 Westview Dr, Washington, IA 52353, 319-653-4655
Hawkeye Comm. College | 844 West 4th St | Waterloo | IA 50702 | 319 . 234 . 5745
Webster City
Iowa Central/Webster City – 1725 Beach St, Webster City, IA 50595, 515-832-1632
West Burlington
SE Comm. College | 1500 West Agency Rd | West Burlington | IA 52655 | 319 . 752 . 2731

Department of Education, Grimes State Office Building, Des Moines, IA 50319-0146

Are adjustments required? This is the link to our contact page.

Questions? Call Iowa’s state office at 515-281-7308

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GED (HiSET) – How to start

If you want to go for the HiSET you cannot have a high school diploma or be registered for a school program. Contact your nearest testing center or a prep facility to find out if you qualify and check out some of our other posts for additional information. If you have the idea that you are ready to take on the HiSET test, make sure to become well prepared.

Read the following guidelines to get ahead: first, contact the prep site close to you and discover all relevant information on testing dates and fees as they may differ. Become well informed. Find out as many details as possible from your local testing center. Local bookstores and libraries will also have materials available, and you can find HiSET preparation classes close to you that offer free preparation, and online courses can also be a great alternative. Appear at the exam well prepared, take the exam, and get your diploma.

GED (HiSET) – what is new

The Iowa Department of Education has (in January 2014) introduced another testing system to replace the GED test for the state’s high school equivalency assessment program. The new test, HiSET (developed by nonprofit ETS) is more affordable and aligned with statewide standards for what students must learn at what grade level. The new testing system prepares students for college and career and is in line with University requirements and industry demands.

The HiSET exam will help guarantee that students are ready to function well in the 21st-century workforce. The HiSET (High School Equivalency Test) assesses skills and knowledge at the level of graduating high school students. The HiSET exam is a series of five tests in the fields of writing, science, math, literature and the arts, and social studies.

If students pass the exam they are awarded the High School Equivalency Diploma (HSED). Preparation is absolutely important. Check out your region for prep classes that will make you ready to take the HiSET test with success or check out our free online help.

Until 2014, Iowa used the GED (General Education Development) test program for high school equivalency assessment, a program that was introduced in the 1940’s. During the entire period, Iowa issued almost 200.000 GED diplomas to its citizens that had not finished high school. Now Iowa has chosen to use the HiSET assessment system, and all across America, there are currently three recognized systems that lead to an alternative to a traditional high school diploma, the GED test, the TASC and the HiSET.

Free GED Online Classes

Jobs with GED (HiSET) diploma

High School Equivalency programs offer people all over the nation another possibility to complete their secondary education. Regardless whether you want to get a college education, or want to get a better job or a promotion at your current workplace, the HiSET program will get you there. The majority of entry-level jobs call for some sort of advanced study and the HiSET and GED programs offer a perfect path to get there.

Over the past few years, the Iowa economy added some 4.600 new Health Care jobs, over 2.100 new Financial Services jobs, and almost 1.100 new jobs in Business Services every year to be filled by its residents, and all these new positions are great chances for entry-level workers. Yet you need a secondary education credential to be able to enter these employment fields.

HiSET prep classes will let you pass the examination smoothly, so you have the chance to tap into these great employment sectors and work towards a better life and a higher income. To qualify for taking the HiSET in Iowa you need to be 19 years old, not possess a secondary credential, and not be active in any school program. For 16, 17, 18-year-olds there are specific regulations, so contact a test center near you.

Before you can sit for the exam in Iowa, you must take and pass the state HiSET pre-test. If you want to obtain your HiSET diploma, you need to pass the five individual tests of the HiSET exam. Testing centers are state-approved and you need to take your tests in person.