Q: I can't determine whether it's a nationally standardized exam (you'd
it would be, but then why the discrepancy regarding what it stands for?).
Why should it? High Schools don't have nationally standardized exams do
A:When I went to high school in New York, there was the GED (something like "General Educational Development") diploma, the local high-school diploma, and the Regents Diploma. The GED test was roughly the minimum requirements for a local diploma, and a local diploma didn't necessarily mean anything more than a GED diploma. Either one was sufficient to get into a community or junior college, where you could complete the first two years of a four-year bachelor's degree, or to qualify for jobs or military service requiring a high-school diploma. Either one _might_ be enough to get into a four-year college directly. Because _some_ local programs covered more than the GED test required, the GED way is sometimes looked at as an easy way out (though it may well be a difficult way for those who actually end up earning one). At the other end was the Regents Diploma, which required a certain amount of diversity and a certain level of scores. The top end academic program at a decent high school would typically give the background to take the tests (say, four to six each year). It didn't leave much room for occupational programs, so it's not like _not_ having one is particularly significant; but those in an academic program would know they had a high-school diploma if they had both the local one and a Regents Diploma. The folks who brought you the GED high-school test also offered a GED college test (which I took just for the heck of it while I was in the Army and a friend of mine was taking the GED high-school test). It's supposed to be the equivalent of a year or two of college in the way that the GED test is sort of the equivalent of four years of high school (though it never did me any good (unless maybe it adds a little something to this posting)). I suspect that anyone with a Regents Diploma wouldn't have much trouble with the GED college test.
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