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Joining the Military With a GED—Is it Possible?

January 13, 2020

The GED and the military have a closer relationship than you might think. In fact, the GED was originally created in 1942 for veterans and members of the military to find good jobs. So if you’re interested in knowing if, and how, you can get into a branch of the military with a GED, keep reading to find out more.

Can You Join the Military With a GED?

Yes! You can join the military with a GED. The military often requires a high school diploma, but it is still very possible for you to become a member of the armed services after you earn a GED

No matter which branch you are looking to serve in, you still must meet the age, citizenship, height and weight, and legal requirements in order to join the military. 

Each branch of the military has tiers for recruits and classifies all of their recruits into one of three categories. Tier 1 recruits have earned a high school diploma or have completed 15 credits (one semester) of college. Tier 2 recruits have a GED. Tier 3 recruits have neither a GED or high school diploma. 

Tier 3 Recruit

There are almost no Tier 3 recruits. It is rare for Tier 3 recruits to join the military. If you are looking to join the military and you do not have a GED, it is highly recommended that you study and pass your GED exam. 

You can get help with earning your GED with practice tests online. They can help you feel prepared for earning your degree so you can have a better chance of entering into the armed forces. 

Tier 2 Recruit

If you have a GED and are looking to get into the military, you have to know that each branch sets its own limits. For example, less than 1% of the annual recruits for the air-force are Tier 2, while roughly 5% of the USMC are Tier 2. One of the biggest ways to help you get into that small percentage of Tier 2 recruits, is to score well on your ASVAB. 


The Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) is key for a Tier 2 recruit to make it into the military. Tier 1 recruits only have to score 31% or higher on the ASVAB. Tier 2 recruits have to score 50% or higher. The ASVAB also provides grounds for what you are qualified to do in each branch. If you score well enough in certain areas and show knowledge or talent in those areas, you can be recruited to fill a specific job, which pretty much guarantees your recruitment. 

Tier 1 Recruit

It doesn’t matter if you have a GED or not if you have either a high school diploma or 15 college credits. You are considered to be a Tier 1 recruit, and Tier 1 recruits get first pick for any open positions.

If you have a GED and want to become a Tier 1 recruit, you need to earn 15 college credits. These credits do not have to be at a large university or state-run school, but can be earned from vocational, community, or business colleges. Before you apply to colleges to get 15 credits (which can be completed in one semester of school), double-check with your recruiter to make sure you are applying to a school that is recognized in programs that will count towards your 15 credits. 

If you’re looking to enlist in the military but need your GED, get GED Ready the official GED practice test. This practice test can help you know where your strengths and weaknesses are within the GED and let you know if you’re going to pass or not. Not only does it show your progress on GED topics, but it can help you create a custom study plan to work on areas that you need to improve, with exact chapters and pages to study that will directly improve your score



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