May 13, 2010

Hispanics, High School Dropouts and the GED

V. The GED among Hispanics

Some Hispanic adults are more likely than others to have a GED (Table 3). More Hispanic males (4%) than females (3%) have a GED. Hispanic adults who speak only English at home or speak English “very well” are more likely to have a GED (5%) than Hispanics with limited English speaking skills (3%). The language differences are not because the GED is an English language-based battery of tests. The GED tests are also given in Spanish. Latino adults of Mexican, Puerto Rican and Dominican origin are more likely to have GEDs than Latinos of other origins. Hispanics residing in institutions (correctional facilities and nursing homes) are much more likely than those living in other residences to have a GED.

The prevalence of GED attainment among Hispanic adults varies across states (Table 4). Nationally, 4% of Latinos have a GED as their highest educational credential. In some states as little as 2% of Latinos have GEDs, while in Wyoming 10% of Hispanic adults report their highest degree is a GED. The state variation likely reflects the nativity differences of Hispanics across states as well as the nature of each state’s adult education systems.