HiSET is one of the exams accepted by the state of Illinois for high school equivalency. The State of Illinois also requires a passing score on a Constitution test. The HiSET English paper version is now being offered at Kishwaukee College Testing Services. 

Click on each titled headings to obtain more information for each topic.

Prepare for the HiSET

Free High School Equivalency Prep Classes: Kishwaukee College offers free HSE classes both on campus and in the community. Find course schedules for HSE classes.

HiSET Preparation

HiSET Study Companion

Candidate Qualifications to take the HiSET test

An individual is eligible to take the HiSET test if they meet the guidelines listed below:

  • 18 years of age or older
  • is not a high school graduate or a GED/HiSET graduate
  • has maintained residence in the State of Illinois for thirty days*

Note: If an individual is of 17 years old or younger, a withdrawal (separation) letter from the last school enrolled must be emailed to leann.arsenault@illinois.gov or faxed to 217-558-6700.

*Illinois Residency is proven by an Illinois address on a government-issued photo ID (e.g. IL Drivers License or IL State ID). If the government-issued photo ID does not include an address, the examinee must provide one of the following in the examinee's name and dated at least 30 days prior to the test date:

  • Wage and Tax statements (IRS Form W2)
  • Illinois auto registration card
  • Bank statement
  • Canceled check
  • Deed/title, mortgage, rental/lease agreement
  • Insurance policy (homeowners or renter's)
  • Pay Stub or electronic deposit receipt
  • Pension or retirement statement
  • Utility Bill (electric, water, refuse, telephone land/cell, cable or gas)
  • Statement of benefits from the Illinois Department of Employment Security or the Social Security Administration
  • Illinois property tax bill
  • Illinois Temporary Visitor Driver's License (NOT VALID FOR IDENTIFICATION. For residency verification ONLY.)
  • Official mail received from a state, county, city, or federal government agency:
    • Homestead exemption receipt
    • Jury Duty notice
    • Selective Service Card
    • Social Security annual statement
    • Social Security disability insurance statement
    • Voter registration card
HiSET Testing Areas

HiSET Subtests

Subject Area
Test Duration
Minimum Required Score
Language Arts-Reading
65 minutes
40 multiple-choice questions
8 out of 20 with a total scaled score on all HiSET subtests of at least 45
Language Arts-Writing
120 minutes
Part 1: 50 multiple-choice questions
Part 2: Essay Prompt
2 out of 6 with a total scaled score on all HiSET subtests of at least 45
90 minutes
50 multiple-choice questions
8 out of 20 with a total scaled score on all HiSET subtests of at least 45
80 minutes
50 multiple-choice questions
8 out of 20 with a total scaled score on all HiSET subtests of at least 45
Social Studies
70 minutes
50 multiple-choice questions
8 out of 20 with a total scaled score on all HiSET subtests of at least 45
Total $90
  • Language Arts Reading – Areas covered include comprehension, inference, interpretation, analysis, synthesis, and generalization.
  • Language Arts Writing – Areas covered include organization of ideas, language facility, writing conventions, and development of position or claim.
  • Mathematics – Areas covered include numbers, operations, measurement/geometry, data analysis, probability, statistics, algebraic concepts, mathematical concepts and procedures, analyzing and interpreting information, synthesizing data, and problem solving. Calculator provided.
  • Science – Areas covered include life science, physical science, earth science, interpretation, application, analysis, evaluation, and generalization.                
  • Social Studies – Areas covered include U.S. and World history, politics, government, economics, geography, interpretation, application, analysis, evaluation, and generalization.

Constitution Test Requirement

The State of Illinois requires all persons who receive an Illinois High School Equivalency to pass the IL/US Constitution Test.  Those who did not meet this requirement while in high school must take a Constitution test administered by the GED Testing Center.

Disability and Testing Accommodations

If you have a documented disability or health issue, you may qualify for accommodations for HiSET testing.

Note: All test takers requesting any accommodations must register by mail  or email through ETS Disability Services and have their accommodations approved before their test can be scheduled.

A test taker’s request for accommodations should be submitted as early as possible, especially if he or she is requesting an alternate test format. Documentation review takes approximately six weeks once the test taker’s request and complete paperwork have been received. If additional documentation must be submitted, it can be another six weeks from the time the new documentation is received until the review is complete. ETS is committed to producing alternate test formats as quickly as possible; however, production times may vary.

Commonly approved accommodations for paper-delivered tests:

  • Extended time
  • Separate room
  • Audiocassette or other form of recorded audio
  • Large print
  • Braille
  • Calculator/talking calculator
  • Scribe or keyboard entry aide
  • Additional supervised break time
  • Sign language-interpreted instructions for deaf or hard-of-hearing examinees

For more assistance with submitting documentation, contact the Director of Adult Education at 815-825-9408.

HiSET Items Not Requiring Approval

The items in these lists do not require prior approval. You can bring them or have access to them on test day without making arrangements with ETS.

Items Provided by ETS or Test Center

On the day of your test, your test center will have the following items available to you:

  • Large print test book (14-point) and answer sheet
  • Scratch paper (to be collected by test center personnel at end of testing session)
  • Wheelchair access

Your test center may also be able to provide preferential seating so you can better hear instructions or cut down on distractions.

Items Provided by Test Taker

If you need one of the following items, you must bring it to your test session. Your test center is not required to have it available for you.

  • Colored transparent overlays (for paper-delivered testing only).
  • Colored scratch paper (to be collected by test center personnel at end of testing session).
  • Earplugs (not attached to any electronic device).
  • Plain, unmarked straightedge to assist with keeping place while reading. You may use a piece of scrap paper for this purpose, but it must be returned at the end of the testing session.
  • Handheld magnifying device (without memory).
  • Seat cushion/back pillow, or footstool. Item will be inspected by test center personnel before and after testing.
  • Prescription medication. Must be in the prescription bottle with a label indicating your name, dosage and directions.
  • Service animals.
  • Medical devices (e.g., asthma inhaler, hearing aid, pacemaker, insulin pump on vibrate or silent, oxygen tank, TENS stimulator).
  • Highlighter or black felt pen for essays and scratch work only.

Any other form of accommodation or modification not listed above, including a separate room, requires approval. You must make your request before scheduling your appointment.

For more information visit the HiSET website 

Create an account and schedule a HiSET Exam
  • Create your account at www.hiset.ets.org/test_takers. You will need your user name and password in the future to schedule tests and check your unofficial score report.
  • Follow the directions to complete registration and scheduling.  When scheduling, choose Kishwaukee College Testing Services as your testing site.
  • Any testing accommodations must be requested during registration.  Depending on the requested accommodation, medical documentation may be necessary.
  • You are encouraged to break up the 5 parts into separate testing sessions.
On the Day of Testing
  • Arrive 15 minutes before your scheduled test time to Testing & Tutoring Services (A1300) for check-in.
  • Bring a photo ID.  The ID must be government issued and non-expired. It must also include: name, address, date of birth, signature, and photograph. Acceptable forms of ID include: Passport, Driver's license, Learner's permit, National/state/country identification card, any other form of government-issued ID (national or foreign), including Matricula Consular. Note: Temporary visitor issued driver’s licenses are not acceptable for identification. They can only be used as a secondary ID for residency.
  • Proof of Illinois Residency: If your primary ID does not show Illinois residency, you must provide proof that you have lived in Illinois for at least 30 days. Please see the list of acceptable documentation in the Candidate Qualifications section above.
  • You will have to leave all your personal belongings in a locked and secure area before entering the testing room


Scores and Retesting (if needed)

On average, official scores are available within fourteen business days for the paper-based HiSET test. You may access your unofficial score report through your HiSET account at www.hiset.ets.org/test_taker.

If you did not pass a section, you have the option to take each section three times within a 12-month period (one initial test and 2 retests).

HiSET Testing Information

Directions to Testing & Tutoring Services A1300