How to Get a GED and Associate Degree at the Same Time

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Many colleges no longer require a high school diploma or GED for admission. Through a program known as "ability to benefit," you can enroll in a college or university even without a high school diploma and still qualify for federal and, in some cases, state financial aid. These colleges will provide GED training while you are also earning credits for an associate degree. The eligibility and requirements vary by college. In most cases, students still need to take a GED test but will receive GED training while in college.

  • Make a list of colleges you are interested in attending. Many universities offer a program for students who did not graduate from high school.

  • Contact colleges and inquire about degree programs. Many colleges offer dual GED and associate degrees, but may not advertise this.

  • Schedule an "ability to benefit" test and any other assessment tests required by the college you choose. In order to qualify for federal financial aid, you will need to take an "ability to benefit" test. Some colleges also use this test as an admission test for students who did not graduate from high school or obtain a GED. Study guides on the Internet can help you pass these exams.

  • Learn about student loans and financial aid. Under the "ability to benefit" program, you may qualify for federal aid, but some state aid programs may not be available to you because you do not have a high school diploma.

  • Speak to your adviser upon admission so that you register for GED training classes. Determine whether you still need to take a GED test and, if so, when you will need to schedule the test.

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