You can get your GED--general equivalency diploma, which corresponds to a high school diploma--in a variety of ways. You can attend an alternative high school, or study on your own to take the state-mandated test. Or you might prepare for and take the exam independently through Cornerstones Career Learning Center, Inc. If you go the Cornerstones route, there are steps to follow to begin achieving this important goal.

Apply to and sign up for the Cornerstones Pride Alternative School if you feel you will need more intensive and individualized support. This school follows the Huron School District curriculum, and provides one-on-one intensive support for those who need it, along with an individualized plan of study. You can pursue the usual GED application process when finished.

Apply to and sign up for the Cornerstones Second Chance High School for a more traditional high school path and a more student-centered approach. Second Chance High is a program that recognizes different learning styles and the need for individualized attention within traditional classroom settings. Instructors will guide you through the GED application process when finished.

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Take the TABE--Test of Adult Basic Education--both pre- and post-test. The TABE helps prepare adult students for the GED test, increasing the possibilities of successful completion on the first try. This test can be taken on the Internet, or as a traditional paper-pencil test. The test’s major focus areas are reading, language use, and basic math.

Complete at least 12 hours of study through the Cornerstones test preparation program. This will involve individualized tutoring in writing, math, literature and social studies.

Keep taking GED practice tests until you receive a score of 480. This is a prerequisite to taking the real test through Cornerstones.

Fill out a GED demographics form. This form can be obtained from a high school guidance office, or your state Department of Education’s website.

Provide a signed parental permission form if you are under the age of 19.

Fill out the GED application paperwork and submit it by noon of the Friday prior to test day. If you are disabled and need accommodations, submit paperwork indicating your disability, along with a Request for Testing Accommodations form. This form can also be obtained from your state Department of Education's website or a local high school.

About the Author

Writing since 1984, Susan Deschel just published "Peer Coaching for Adolescent Writers" through Corwin Press, a handbook for teachers. Deschel has a bachelor's degree in creative writing, master's in education, and is currently working on her doctorate in curriculum and instruction. She writes in other genres, including fiction and poetry.