What a High School Degree Mean ?
A High School Degree Graduated is a person who has completed all of his or her high school studies. High school offers a variety of valuable educational and life experiences outside the classroom, from hands-on study experiences to clubs and extracurricular activities.
In addition, high school offers social development opportunities that will help people through college and the workforce.
Earning a high school diploma will likely prepare students for the academic challenges of college. Generally, one can earn a high school diploma in four years. A person who does not follow the traditional path to a diploma can still seek an equivalent credential at almost any age.
Proof of a high school diploma or its equivalent is usually the minimum requirement for most postsecondary jobs and academic programs.
What Are the Steps to a High School Diploma ?
Traditionally, students complete four years of high school (grades 9-12) to earn their diplomas. The typical high school graduate is 18 years old. Some schools require students to pass a final exam before granting high school diplomas.
However, obtaining a high school diploma from a public school traditionally involves completing courses in mathematics, science, social studies, English and physical education, as well as a foreign language and electives.
To obtain a high school diploma from a private school, additional courses in foreign language and fine arts may be required.
There are several ways to earn a high school diploma:
High School Diploma Program in a Classroom
Students work with instructors independently or in small groups. Computerized units of instruction may also be used in a classroom computer. Classes have regular meeting times and are usually offered during the day and evening.
Printed materials and textbooks are used, and tests are taken in a classroom. This option may be best for students who learn through a hands-on approach or who require individualized attention.
High School Diploma Correspondence Programs
Correspondence high school diploma programs are designed for students who have not completed a traditional high school program and wish to earn their diploma by mail.
These programs generally require the student to take the same courses and equivalent workload as traditional high school students; usually nine months of correspondence study equals one year of traditional high school.
Program entrance requirements generally include a math and reading skills assessment test, and students must provide a sealed copy of their high school transcript prior to enrollment.
High school credit may be awarded for transfer credit, basic military training, military education, and work experience.
Correspondence courses by mail are self-directed, and diplomas are earned when the student has earned enough credits as required by the school and has passed a state proficiency test or standardized evaluation.
Home Education Diploma Programs
Home schooling allows families to educate their children at home instead of sending them to a public or private school. Homeschoolers, who must generally meet the curriculum requirements of their home state’s Department of Education, have little opportunity to earn a diploma from an accredited public education system or institution.
Some homeschooling parents create their own diploma to present to the student, but it is not considered an accredited diploma. Other homeschooling students take the high school GED or general education equivalency test simply to have a recognized credential to attach to college or employment applications.
High School Diploma Programs for Adults
Adult high school diploma programs can serve both people who have only a few diploma credits and those who need to complete their entire high school education.
Students in these programs are required to take the same courses and workload as traditional high school students. Each state regulates its own curriculum, but typical required subjects include math, science, English, history, and electives.
Generally, students must take a skills assessment test and provide a sealed copy of their high school transcript prior to enrollment.
High school credit may be awarded for transfer credit, basic military training, military education, and work experience. Some programs require a minimum of a ninth grade reading level or the student may take reading improvement courses.
Online High School Diploma Programs
Alternatively, high school diploma candidates may choose to complete courses through an accredited online school. Similar core credits must be completed, but online programs generally offer accelerated courses so that candidates can earn their high school diplomas in a shorter period of time.
These programs are especially designed for working adults who wish to return to school to earn their diploma. High school online courses use web-based course management systems to offer courses over the Internet.
Communication with instructors is through email and dedicated chat rooms. Students generally need a high-speed Internet connection, a current web browser, and word processing software. Course work is usually self-paced and competency-based as well. The student can continue to evaluate a topic until a minimum acceptable score is achieved.
Hybrid programs combine online courses with on-campus requirements. Online and print materials are used; often on-campus computer lab time and instructor meetings are required. Most hybrid programs require the student to take final exams in the on-campus classroom.
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