Earning your New York High School Diploma or Regents Diploma!

How to Earn Your High School or Regents Diploma in New York

The state of New York awards its qualified high school students with a Regents diploma instead of a general high school diploma or local diploma. For adults who did not earn a high school or Regents diploma while they were in high school, the state of New York offers three alternatives: the Test Assessing Secondary Completion (TASC) credential, the National External Diploma Program (NEDP) and Operation Recognition, a high school diploma program for which some veterans are eligible.

Regents Diploma

The state of New York offers a Regents diploma to high school students who complete 22 credits during their 4 years of school, including 4 of English language arts, 4 of social studies, 3 of science, 3 of mathematics, 1 of the arts, 0.5 of health, 1-3 of foreign language and 2 of physical education. Elective courses can round out the 22. Additionally, students must receive a score of at least 65 on all five of the required exams: English language arts, global history, U.S. history, science and algebra.

Students who earn scores of 90 or better on their exams will receive an honors Regents diploma, and those who take additional tests in math, science and a foreign language can receive a Regents diploma with advanced designation. Students who complete a career and technical education program through their high school may receive a Regent diploma with a career and technical education endorsement.


New York adopted the TASC exam in 2014. The five-subject timed test is available in both English and Spanish, and can be taken in either a paper- or computer-based format. NY residents age 19 or older can sit for the exam. Individuals between 16 and 19 may also be eligible for the TASC exam if they meet certain criteria. The TASC consists of multiple-choice questions, reading tasks, constructed responses, and technology-enhanced items (computer-based). Each subtest is scored out of 800 points. Passing the TASC requires a minimum score of 500 on each of the five subject area tests and at least a 2 out of 8 on the writing section's essay.


The NEDP is a distance-learning, performance-based assessment program that allows adults to earn a high school diploma once they can demonstrate certain competencies. It is administered through Comprehensive Adult Student Assessment Systems (CASAS). Participants meet weekly with an assessor. Upon successful evaluation of their abilities in 65 areas of transferable skills, a high school diploma may be awarded.

Operation Recognition

Veterans who left school in order to enlist in the military and serve during the time periods that included World War II, the Korean War and the Vietnam War can receive a high school diploma for free through Operation Recognition if certain criteria are met. Requirements include qualified service between established start and end dates, honorable discharge from military service and New York State residency. Veterans with a high school diploma equivalent are still eligible to receive this diploma, which may be issued by any high school in the state that already confers diplomas.

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