Can You Attend College Without a High School Diploma?

By Brenda on October 4th, 2011



The consensus reports that no one without a high school diploma can attend college.  Is this true or a myth?  We have debunked the myth and collected figures from the United States Education Department that reveals that just over 2% of all students attending college, do so without a high school diploma.

Below are several ways you too can attend college without possessing a high school diploma:

Get an online education

Online schools and some community colleges deal routinely with non-traditional students and are more inclined to assist the student who doesn’t have a high school diploma.  Many times the schools offer programs that prepare the student to either obtain their diploma or transition into the program without one.  Many online degree programs offered by accredited institutions

Get your GED

If you don’t have your high school diploma, you may be eligible to take a General Education Diploma test or GED which is the equivalent of a high school diploma.  Most vocational schools or job-preparedness classes require a GED or diploma.  There are classes that prepare students to take the GED test.  A study-guide is available and students may study on their own or take a class that prepares them for the exam.

Go non-traditional

Many online schools offer non-traditional students special programs and services that allow them to enroll without a high school diploma.  Non-traditional students are eligible for enrollment in special classes that prepare them for success without a diploma.

The class or special program fulfillment allows these non-traditional students to bypass taking the SAT and other requirements of the traditional student.  Non-traditional students must be able to demonstrate substantial life experience that shows they can handle life as a student and the demands of college.

Explain the situation you are in

Many colleges, especially online institutions are lenient with students’ personal situations.  They take into consideration the story you have or the experiences you have been through that stood in the way of you and the receipt of a high school diploma.  Learning disabilities, a death in the family, divorce among parents or other circumstances are always entertained by the admissions board and taken into consideration.

The most important thing to do is tell the truth.  Keep things simple but don’t be afraid to explain the truth as it is.  You are more likely to gain the respect of the admissions committee if you are upfront.

Take a placement exam

Most colleges and online institutions offer placement exams that non- traditional students may take in order qualify them for enrollment.  Once the student passes the examination the college may admit them without regard to their high school diploma status.

Admissions counselor’s offer a lot of advice in this area and are able to answer questions about the school’s ability to admit a student without a high school diploma.  Admissions counselors are also available to provide students with information on admissions, both for traditional and non-traditional students.  No matter what situation you are in, nothing should stand in your way of attending college.  Seek the counsel and advice you need to get the answers you want.


Category: Campus Degrees,Degrees,Online Degrees