Skip to Main Content

Ways Adults Can Earn a Maryland High School Diploma - Adult Education and Literacy Services

In Maryland there are three ways an adult who has withdrawn from high school before graduating may earn a high school diploma.

1. GED®:

GED® candidates must be residents of Maryland. They must be at least 18 years of age at the time of testing. They may not have obtained a Maryland high school diploma, a high school certificate or diploma issued by another state by a non-US or correspondence school. They must be officially withdrawn from a regular full-time public or private school; or have obtained a Maryland High School Certificate of Program Completion in accordance with Code of Maryland Regulations (COMAR) 13A.03.02.09D.

In order to pass the test, a minimum score must be obtained in the content areas of Reasoning through Language Arts, Science, Social Studies and Mathematics.

Learn more by visiting Maryland GED® Testing.

2. National Adult External Diploma Program (NEDP)

This program is for individuals, ages 18 and older, who are not enrolled in regular high school and can demonstrate essential academic competencies and life skills. Academic skill areas include: reading, writing, mathematics, oral communication, and critical thinking. Life skills relate to occupational, self, social, aesthetic, consumer, and scientific awareness. This is not a class attendance-based program. Participants are expected to meet periodically with an assessor to develop a portfolio that proves they have acquired the skills required to be awarded a Maryland High School Diploma.

This is an online-format program designed for self-directed youth and adults with life and work experiences and familiarity with the computer. This program offers flexible scheduling and confidentiality.

For more information about the National External Diploma Program (NEDP®), contact an NEDP® program in or near your county directly or e-mail Donata Mooring.

National Adult External Diploma Program (NEDP) flyer

3. Adult High School Pilot Program

The Maryland Adult High School Pilot Program establishes an alternative method for adults, who did not graduate from high school, to earn a high school diploma and potentially earn post-secondary credit or an industry-recognized certification in an environment that meets the needs of the adult learner. Adult high school pilots will serve learners 21 years and older, who do not have a high school diploma or who did not complete the requirements for high school graduation through GED® testing or the National External Diploma Program. In addition to the academic course of study leading to a high school diploma, the adult high school pilots will offer wrap-around services, career pathways in high need and growth industry sectors, and transitions into postsecondary education and credentialing opportunities.

Applications to open Adult High Schools are currently under review. Please check back for school locations and openings

The Adult High School Pilot Program flyer

For more information about the Adult High School Pilot Program e-mail Lynnette Demby.

Maryland Adult Education High School Diploma Options brochure