Online High School Diploma - Illinois

Accredited Online High School Diploma in Illinois

Having trouble with regular high school, looking for online learning options for your teenager, or are you an adult wanting to return to high school? Penn Foster provides accredited online high school diploma programs¹ that you can finish in your own time. We're here to support you wherever you are in the world, helping you reach your educational dreams.

  • Penn Foster High School is regionally accredited by the Commission on Secondary Schools of the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools, and nationally accredited through the Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC) and Cognia, the world leader in providing improvement and accreditation services to education providers of all types in their pursuit of excellence in serving students.
  • Have you already completed some of your high school courses? Some or all your credits may transfer to Penn Foster, so you don’t have to retake the courses. 
  • Getting a high school diploma is very important, no matter what you want to do when you graduate.
  • In our high school classes, you'll take core classes like English and math. Plus, you get to pick five more subjects that you're interested in. You could choose American Literature or Algebra, or maybe you want to learn about fixing cars or helping animals.
  • The best part is that our classes are online, so you can do your work when it fits your schedule. You get to decide how fast or slow you want to go, based on how much time you have each week.

Save up to $450 Ends 5/29/2024

Cost of Program


$1,499 Save $450


$55/month, Start for as low as $20

1-888-427-6200 (9AM - 9PM ET)

What You Will Learn

  1. How to use critical thinking and reasoning skills to complete learning tasks in English Language Arts courses.
  2. How to use critical thinking and reasoning skills to complete learning tasks in science courses.
  3. How to use declarative knowledge and demonstrate understanding to complete learning tasks in math courses.
  4. How to utilize writing skills to complete writing assessments.
Full Program Goal & Outcomes

High School Diploma Career Outcomes in Illinois

Income data from World Population Review:

Average Salary in Illinois by Education Level

Less Than 9th Grade


High School Graduate




Penn Foster's online High School Program is designed to prepare you for the journey ahead - whether it's getting a job in Illinois, attending college, joining the military, or carving out a unique path of your own. You have the option to follow a traditional high school curriculum or opt for one of our career pathway diplomas if you've already set your sights on a particular career. Regardless of the path you choose, securing your high school diploma can boost your lifetime earnings. Indeed, high school graduates in IL typically pocket about $6,000 more annually in entry-level roles compared to those who didn't complete high school.**

State Licensing Requirements

If you are interested in pursuing post-secondary education within your state you should check with your state to understand the requirements. States may impose requirements for receiving state financial aid. For example, an online High School diploma may not be recognized by some colleges and universities within your state to receive financial aid. We recommend you check with the institution for any specific restrictions - this is particularly important for residents of New York.

What are the benefits of earning an online high school diploma in Illinois?

Earning your diploma from an online high school is different from attending class in person every day. A conventional school setting doesn't suit everyone, just as online learning isn't for all learners. However, if you feel like online high school is a good fit, you'll likely discover a program that aligns with your educational interests and future aspirations. Upon completion of your online high school or career program, you can go on to enroll in college, earn a job training certificate, enlist in the military, or enter the workforce equipped with confidence and newly acquired skills.


What are some of the benefits that an online high school program, like Penn Foster's, can offer to both teen students and adult learners?

  1. Flexible schedules: Online education enables you to study and complete assignments at your convenience, integrating your learning journey with your other commitments.
  2. Education from anywhere: With a stable internet connection, you can access your studies from virtually any corner of the globe.
  3. Wide variety of programs: Online high schools are not all identical, meaning you can find a program that suits your current needs and future ambitions.
  4. Increased income: Regardless of the way you earn your diploma, being a high school graduate in IL can elevate your earning potential compared to those who didn't complete high school.
  5. Career opportunities: For the majority of jobs across various sectors, a high school diploma is a baseline requirement.
  6. Local benefits: As a resident of Illinois who completes high school, you may be eligible for local resources, grants, and scholarships should you decide to pursue higher education.

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Cathy Breymeier

Manager, High School Course Department

“Penn Foster’s online high school program can really benefit students who struggle with a structured learning environment allowing them the opportunity to work at a flexible pace comfortable to them with hours that suit their various learning needs.  Additionally, students who are bullied, struggle with anxiety or feel a lack of acceptance in a traditional school environment can find a home with PFHS and flourish in an online learning environment.”

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Dr. Andy Shean

Chief Learning Officer

“Online learning is often just as rigorous as in-person learning; however, the flexibility to study when you are ready to focus (e.g., at night, on the weekend, etc), the ability to re-watch video content as many times as you need, and on-demand support can make online learning more attractive, especially for adult learners who are often working and in some cases juggling parenting duty.”

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Mariam Dawoud

High School Math Instructor

“Online schooling is a great option for people who take care of many aspects of life and passionately aim to upward their education making themselves candidates for career-escalating opportunities. It’s a way to multitask without putting one’s employment or family duties on hold.”

Online High School Diploma in Illinois - Curriculum

  • 16 core credits
  • 5 elective credits 

Estimated completion time:

  • Fast track = 6 months
  • Average time = 14 months

With Penn Foster, you can learn at whatever pace works best for you. Some learners will be more comfortable moving faster, and dedicating more time, and the fast track estimate will apply to them. The average track will apply to most learners who can dedicate a few hours per week to completing their coursework. The estimated completion times are based on completion times for learners enrolled in this program from November 2019 - October 2020, excluding withdrawals.

Our online high school diploma curriculum is a total of 21.5 credits, including your basic general education requirements, like English and math courses. Penn Foster High School students get to choose 5 elective credits, ranging from academic electives like American literature and algebra to career electives, like pharmacy technician, residential electrician, or vet assistant. If you choose to focus on a specific career in one of our pathway high school programs, your electives will be focused on skills needed for your chosen career path.

Choosing an online high school puts you in control of your education. Our curriculum encompasses all the fundamental classes that every IL student must successfully complete to graduate. However, the beauty of online high school is that you can personalize your learning journey. You get to choose five additional classes from a broad range of electives: you can go for career-oriented classes such as automotive repair or veterinary assistance, college preparatory courses like American Literature and Geometry, or other subjects like Economics and Microsoft Excel. The core curriculum includes:

  • Written Communication
  • General Math
  • Biology
  • American History

Show Full Curriculum

High School Diploma Success Stories

North Carolina graduates of Penn Foster's High School Diploma program have been able to start new careers, advance in their current jobs, join the military, or pursue college degrees - all while learning at the speed that works best for them!
View Student Success Stories
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Selina L.

High School Graduate, 2021

“Obtaining my high school diploma was the first important step I needed to take in order to get to college. Penn Foster paved the way for me to take the next step into my career.”

Interested in High School Completion For Your Learners?

Penn Foster currently works with hundreds of leading employers to meet their unique organizational needs.
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How much does it cost to get your high school diploma online in Illinois?

Earning your high school diploma online in Illinois doesn't have to cost a fortune. With our fair prices and flexible payment plans, you can get your diploma at a pace that's right for you, without going over your budget. Pick the payment plan that's easy on your wallet and start learning today!

Option 1: Pay in full

Save up to $450 Ends 5/29/2024

Cost of Program


$1,499 Save $450

  • Best price. Best value.
  • Pay the full cost today
  • No monthly payments
Enroll Now

Option 2: Monthly Auto Pay Plan

Cost of Program


  • Pay $55 per month
  • Start for $20 down
  • All major credit and debit cards accepted
Enroll Now

Option 3: Monthly Mail Pay Plan

cost of program


  • Pay $55 per month
  • Start for $39 down
  • Mail your payments
Enroll Now

Need more info or ready to enroll?

Looking for more information on transfer credits, military benefits or our refund policy. find this this information and more about tuition and enrollment.

Tuition & Payment Options

Our Proven High School Learning Model

Empowering students to reach their professional goals


  • Start anytime
  • No exam due dates
  • Self-paced


  • Digital study guides
  • Self-check quizzes
  • Simulations and videos


  • 24/7 access to online resources
  • Online Student Community
  • Student Portal Help Center


  • Expert faculty
  • Dedicated student services
  • Robust learning resources

Online High School Diploma in Illinois FAQs

Can you do high school online in Illinois?

Yes, students can attend high school online in Illinois. The Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) recognizes several online programs, including fully online schools and supplementary courses.

What is the best Illinois online high school?

The best online high school is the one that best meets your needs. We recommend that you find an accredited high school and learn how online high school works to help you find the best option for you.

Is virtual learning still an option in Illinois?

Yes. The COVID-19 pandemic expanded the state’s use of remote learning, but there are many Illinois schools with long-established online high school programs.

Is online high school the same as virtual high school?

Yes, “online” and “virtual” are often used interchangeably along with “remote” to describe a way of learning that is done over the internet and not in a traditional classroom.

How do I get my high school diploma online in Illinois?

To get a high school diploma online in Illinois:

  1. Research and select an accredited online high school that is recognized by the ISBE.
  2. Enroll in the school and meet all of its course requirements.
  3. Stay engaged with your coursework and maintain consistent communication with instructors.
  4. Successfully pass all required courses and exams.
  5. Once you've met all graduation requirements, the online school will issue you a high school diploma.

How can I get my high school diploma in Illinois if I'm over 18?

If you're over 18 and haven't earned a high school diploma in Illinois, you can enroll in an adult high school or an online high school program that caters to adult learners..

What’s the difference between a high school diploma and a GED in Illinois?

In Illinois, you earn a high school diploma by completing specific course requirements, including 4 language arts credits; 2 writing-intensive credits, one of which can be in English language arts; 3 mathematics credits, including Algebra 1 and geometry; 2 science credits; 2 social studies credits, of which one must cover U.S. history or a blend of U.S. history and American government, and one semester in civics; and 1 credit from options like art, music, foreign language (including American Sign Language), or vocational education.

The GED (General Education Development) consists of four exams that test your abilities to analyze, evaluate, and draw conclusions rather than recall specific facts. The four GED tests are Reasoning through Language Arts, Mathematical Reasoning, Science, and Social Studies. Once you successfully pass all four exams, you are awarded a high school equivalency diploma, which can be used to apply for colleges and jobs.