One in 10 Hispanic high school dropouts earn GED?

Certification: Test Prep GED - General Education Development


Hispanics are the largest minority group in United States making up 15% of the nation’s populations. Out of the 47 million Hispanics in the country as of 2008, 29 million were of the age 20 and more and 41% of these adults did not have a high school diploma. The high school dropout ratio of the adult Hispanics of the age 20 and more in the country is much higher compared to the blacks and whites of the same age group.Moreover, the Hispanic high school dropouts are also observed to be largely lagging behind the blacks and whites in the United States in terms of having a General Educational Development (GED) credential. The data analysis of the American Community Survey, 2008 published by U.S. Census Bureau brings to light that in contrast to  3-in-10 white high school dropouts and 2-in-10 black high school dropouts only 1-in-10 Hispanics have a GED credential.

Reasons for Low GED Credentialed Hispanics

The study of the data released by U.S. Census Bureau also reveals that Hispanic immigrant adults are much lower in education standards compared to the Hispanics staying in the United States for decades. The rate of high school dropouts among Hispanic immigrants in also much higher than the Hispanics born in the United States, with the rates being 52% Hispanic immigrants compared to the 25% native Hispanics. Moreover, the level of these immigrants with a GED credential is also low with only 5% of the foreign born Hispanics having a GED credential compared to the 21% native born Hispanics having a GED. The reason for the low GED levels among immigrants may be due to the lack of knowledge or longer time needed by them to know about the GED program.

Another fact that could be a discouraging factor for Hispanics to pursue GED program is that the unemployment rate of Hispanics with GED credential is much higher than the ones holding a high school diploma.Moreover, the statistics also shows that the Hispanics with high school diploma are more likely to have jobs for full year than the GED earners with not much difference in the income levels. The GED earners have a mean income of $33,504 in comparison to the mean income of Hispanics with high school diploma at $32,972. However, the employees with college education or more had a much higher mean income level at $48,621. The advantage that GED holders can have over high school diploma is the opportunity it offers to be enlisted in the United States Military and the trend that shows that GED holders are more likely to become veterans in military than high school graduates.

Importance of GED

GED is a brand name for high school equivalency credential in the United States for decades. Recognized and accepted across all the states, the test has various advantages at national level including it being transferable from state to state. GED is most widely taken up exam by the high school dropouts for pursuing a postsecondary education or a career in future. The test, conducted by the American Council on Education (ACE), assesses the knowledge and skills of a candidate in five academic areas relating to high school education. The widespread reach of the GED program in the nation is evident from the fact that the major providers of the test are community colleges, military, local school districts and correctional facilities.

Research data establishes that the percentage of high school dropouts with a GED credential take up postsecondary education much more than the high school graduates. It is also observed that the universities and colleges offering degree programs also consider only high school dropouts with GED credential. Hence, the lack of a GED credential can limit the scope of Hispanics for postsecondary education and a career henceforth in the United States.

Hispanics with GED Credential

Among Hispanics there are various factors that may reflect the number of them havinga GED credential. Data research show that more males compared to the females of the community group have a GED. Despite the GED test being offered in two languages including English and Spanish, it is observed that more Hispanics with advanced English speaking skills own a GED credential than Hispanics with limited skill. Moreover, the Hispanics from Dominican origin, Mexico and Puerto Rico are more likely to have a GED compared to other regions. In United States, the percentage of Hispanics with GED as the highest educational certification is four, with states such as Wyoming having 10% of Hispanics with GED as their highest degree, followed by Hawai (7%), Colorado (6%), and states such as Connecticut, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, etc. with 5%.

GED Program Awareness among Hispanics

The awareness of GED as well as other educational programs among Hispanics, especially the immigrants, is a necessity today to bring them up in the society. The Hispanics must be educated about the importance of GED in raising their skills and living standards and the various opportunities it has in store to offer them. It is also equally important to provide them with resources for preparation for GED Test to help them make a way out of the low paying jobs and pursue higher education to look for better jobs.The need to understand how earning a GED would help them in getting better skilled jobs and better incomes and also open avenues to be more educated. Through development of technology and distance learning, the preparation or the GED test can made easily accessible and affordable for them. The course awareness among the Hispanics, especially the undereducated and immigrants is an essential requirement to develop and raise the education standards of the largest minority group of the nation.


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