Can You Join the Navy With a GED?


Joining the Navy With a GED

The Navy accepts high school equivalency credentials, such as the General Educational Development diploma. Individuals who have a GED may be able to enlist as a sailor; however, additional education is required to be eligible to serve as a commissioned officer.


There is a high level of competition for military careers, including careers in the Navy. While a GED may technically qualify an applicant for consideration, he or she may be competing against individuals with college educations or other credentials. In some cases, individuals with a GED may need to complete additional training in order to be accepted to the Navy.

Navy Career Options

There are a large number of naval occupations available to sailors with a GED, and many of them provide any necessary training. Individuals with a GED are eligible to pursue career options such as these:

Nuclear Technician Explosive Ordnance Disposal Technician
Cryptologic Technician Submarine Electronics
Power Plant Operator Navy Hospital Corpsman
Aereographer's Mate Navy Aircrewman

Additional Eligibility Requirements

Although a GED qualifies individuals to apply for careers with the Navy, there are many other requirements candidates must fulfill.

Age Requirements

Recruits are typically 18 years of age or older. Those who are 17 and wish to enlist must receive permission from their parent or guardian. The Navy does not accept applicants over the age of 39.


Enlisted sailors must be U.S. citizens or have a Green Card or permanent residence visa.

Legal and Drug/Alcohol Considerations

The Navy seeks candidates who demonstrate strong moral character. If an applicant has a criminal history or fails drug tests he or she may not be eligible for a career in the Navy.

Medical Factors

Applicants will have their medical history reviewed and be given a physical exam.

Family and Financial Considerations

In some cases, single parents are not eligible to pursue a career in the Navy. This depends on the number of dependents they have and their ages.

There may also be financial factors that exclude individuals from qualifying for a Navy career.

Training Requirements

While a GED may be enough to qualify individuals for a career with the Navy, they must also complete the Navy's Recruit Training once they've enlisted. The Buddy Program and Warrior Challenge Program are also training options for those pursuing a career as an enlisted sailor.

Recruit Training

The standard training all individuals pursuing a career in the Navy must complete is rigorous. It combines physical and academic training components. Individuals must also be able to pass the Navy's swimming test.

Those who are planning to pursue a Navy career are advised to engage in physical activity daily in order to meet the physical fitness requirements. Activities such as strength training, swimming and jogging are all good ways to prepare for the physical components of the recruit training program.

Studying for GED Tests

Using study manuals and practice tests can help you prepare for your GED exams. There are study resources that are tailored to each GED subject area that can be accessed through the links listed here.

What Does GED Stand For?

GED stands for the General Educational Development tests. These exams are taken by individuals who did not earn a high school diploma and cover four main subject areas. The successful completion of these tests provides the same benefits as graduating high school. Read on to learn more.

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