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How to Go Back to School as an Adult

Written by James Madison High School on Tuesday, 20 August 2019. Posted in Adult Learner

Students looking at desktop computer.

Back to school season isn’t just for young students attending traditional school. As an adult, having a high school diploma can make a difference to your earning potential as well as the range of jobs you’re qualified for. If you weren’t able to graduate in the past, you might worry that it’s too late. But, with James Madison’s online high school program, you can finish your diploma at any age - it’s never too late!

Finishing high school is more than just a milestone in your life. Whether or not you’ve graduated and earned your high school diploma can affect what kind of jobs you can apply to, the amount you can potentially make, and more. That’s why getting your diploma as an adult can be important. If you had to leave school because you needed to work to help your family, because health issues made it difficult to go to class, or for any other reason, you may feel like you’ve missed your chance.

As an adult, it might feel like it’s too late to do anything about it. But having a high school diploma or its equivalent, like a GED, on your resume can be necessary to be eligible for promotions or even entry-level positions at most companies. You know you need to get something done, but the thought of heading back to a classroom after so many years, at your age, feels awkward, embarrassing, and, to be honest, not flexible enough for your work schedule. That’s where an accredited online high school can help.

Why choose an online high school to finish your diploma?

As an adult learner, you want to complete the work and pass your classes as soon as possible so you can say that you graduated from high school on your next job application. You’ve looked into classes in your area, as well as doing research on online options and you’re not sure which will be the best fit for you. But online education comes with a few benefits for adult learners that aren’t as easy to find in a traditional setting.

  1. Enroll when you’re ready. Traditional adult education programs, from high school completion classes to GED courses, often have specific application deadlines and start dates. With James Madison High School, you can enroll online or over the phone the second you’re ready to get started.
  2. Study when and where you want. There are no scheduled classes or deadlines for James Madison’s online high school. That means you can study and take your exams before work, before bed, on your days off, when you have breaks, or any time that best fits your schedule, not ours. You can also take your classes on the go and get work done anywhere you have a reliable internet connection.
  3. Learn at your own speed. Every student is different and learns at a different pace. Maybe you’re great at English and writing but aren’t as confident in your math skills. You don’t have to feel like you’re being held back in the areas you excel in or rushed through what you’re not sure about. With a flexible, online high school program, you complete classes on your terms.
  4. Online high school doesn’t have an age limit. A drawback of local high school completion classes is that many have age cutoffs. While that number can vary depending on the school, there are adult learners who aren’t eligible to participate because of their age. Online school, on the other hand, has no limit. No matter your age or how long it’s been since you’ve left high school, you’re able to get back on track with James Madison.

The flexibility of online classes is perfect for your schedule, but before enrolling, you want to make sure the school you choose will help you prepare to reach your goals.

What to look for when you’re considering online school.

Finishing your high school diploma online sounds like the perfect solution, but it’s important to make sure the online school you choose is legitimate. While there are many different things you’ll want to consider to feel confident you’re making the right choice in your school, there are two big things that can show you your school is legitimate.

  1. Accreditation. Accreditation means that the school is recognized as meeting the standards set by state, regional, or national organizations. James Madison High School is nationally accredited by both Cognia and the Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC).
  2. Certified faculty. Whether they’re teaching in a traditional setting or are distance education experts, most teachers need to be certified to do the job. James Madison’s faculty members have passed state exams to prove they have the knowledge and experience to help others further their education.

Accreditation and confidence in your teachers are big concerns for many students, so before enrolling in any school, make sure you know what makes them legit!

Back to school belongs to everyone at JMHS.

Age is just a number and shouldn’t prevent you from making your dreams a reality, whether that’s finishing your high school diploma, walking the stage at graduation, or starting a new career. If you’re ready to take the next step and get started this back to school season, enroll online or reach out to our academic advisors at .

About the Author

James Madison High School

James Madison High School

Our blog comes to you live from our high school students and community. Dive in to hear more from current students, alumni, and experts as we celebrate our student's accomplishments, persistence, and passions.