For job-seekers who graduated high school, the resume-creation process is typically pretty straightforward when it comes to education. However, students who earned a General Educational Development (GED) certificate may struggle with that part of their resume. Some wonder whether they should even include their GED in a resume. Others are unsure about how to include that certification. In this post, we’ll examine both questions and help you ensure that your educational achievements get the attention they deserve.
The GED may not be an actual high school diploma, but it is an important substitute for that document. To earn this certification, students must complete tests covering all the main subjects in a high school curriculum. Those subjects include math, reading, science, and social studies, and other primary courses of study. By passing these tests, students demonstrate that they have knowledge equivalent to that gained in a high school setting. That’s why the General Educational Development is commonly referred to as a high school equivalency diploma.
To pass, a student must score at least 145 points out of a possible 200 total points for each exam component. Those who achieve a score in the range of 165-175 are considered to be ready for college. Any score above that may provide the student with some college credits as well.
Today’s employers have come to understand the importance of the GED. Moreover, most accept it as a high school diploma alternative. That’s true of colleges and universities too. So, while there was once a stigma associated with the GED, that view has largely evolved in recent decades. With that in mind, you should have no hesitation about including your GED in a resume. More importantly, you should include your GED in a resume if you have no college experience.
However, you won’t need to include your GED in a resume if you have college experience that can replace it. In addition, you can likely skip the educational section altogether if you have a strong work history.
When you list your GED in a resume, it goes in the education section, in the same place you would put your high school diploma. If you live in a state like California that has its own high school equivalency exam, you can list that instead. Note that you can also include these certifications even if you’re not yet done with them – but you’ll need to mention that they’re still in progress.
To list your GED in a resume, be sure to spell out the entire name of the certificate. For example:
General Educational Development Certificate
If you’re still working on the tests, you should list that information like this:
General Educational Development Certificate (in progress)
As noted, you may need to modify that listing for state-specific equivalency tests. For example:
CHSPE Certificate (Certificate of Proficiency from the State of California)
Of course, the most important thing is that you have that education, especially if you left high school early for any reason. Employers almost always expect to see at least a high school diploma or equivalency certificate. So, if you haven’t done so already, be sure to focus on getting your GED. And once you have it, be proud to include that GED in your resume!