The first time that nursing students will take a HESI examination is as an entrance examination for nursing school. The HESI examination is a separate exam that is not administered by the same company who administers the NCLEX examinations. The score on this examination will play an important role in their path during nursing school. Each test will provide a clear picture of students’ strengths and weaknesses in their nursing school courses.
The decision to become nurses is one of the most important decisions that nursing students will ever make. Their careers in the healthcare field play a vital role in the world today. They have a wonderful career that allows them to help others with their health needs. Studying to become nurses is not an easy task. Nursing students have a series of tests to take before they can become licensed nurses, and the testing begins well before they graduate from nursing school and become professional nurses.
Before nurses take the NCLEX examinations after graduating and practicing as nurses for a few years, they must take the HESI examination several times during their time in nursing school.
This seciton will explain what nursing students can expect with the HESI test. For more information, visit our HESI nursing exam section.
What is HESI Evolve Reach Exam?
The HESI Evolve Reach Exam (formerly the Health Education System, Inc.) is an examination used by nursing schools to predict NCLEX scores. The examination is taken 3 times during nursing students’ careers. They take the test as a nursing entrance examination, halfway through the program, and at the end of the nursing program. Each examination helps the nursing students prepare for the NCLEX certification examinations.
The examination has 5 sections that consist of reading comprehension; anatomy and physiology, chemistry, and biology; general knowledge and vocabulary; basic math skills; and grammar. Nursing students may also have to complete an additional section of the test during their first testing. This section of the HESI examination covers personality traits, decision-making skills, and learning styles.
There is a 4-hour time allotment to take the HESI examination. Most nursing students complete the test in 2 to 3 hours. Testers are expected to make a passing score on the exam. The passing score is determined by the administration at individual universities and colleges. In the event that students do not make a passing score on the first examination, they must retake the exam after a 60-day waiting period. Every version of the HESI is different to ensure evaluation accuracy.
The tests administrators rely on education experts to create the examination content. Experts develop and write questions in their respective areas of expertise. The makers of HESI use a panel of education experts to evaluate these questions for consistency, clarity, and readability. The questions are evaluated very frequently to ensure that they are effective in assessing candidates for specific healthcare program examinations.
Types of HESI Exams
Entrance HESI A2 Exam
The Admission Assessment Exam HESI A2 is a computer based examination that tests students’ knowledge in 6 modules. The modules include reading comprehension; anatomy and physiology, chemistry, and biology; general knowledge and vocabulary; basic math skills; grammar; and personality traits, decision-making skills, and learning style. The information obtained from the 6th module does not affect nursing students’ admission. The following is the breakdown of the exam’s content:
- Math – This section of the test contains 50 questions. Nursing students test their skills in subtracting, addition, fractions, multiplication, decimals, and other general math facts on the math section of the HESI examination. Students will need to know how to calculate drug dosages on this section.
- Reading Comprehension – This section of the test contains 50 questions. The test uses health-related scenarios to measure inferencing, main idea, context clues, and other reading comprehension topics.
- Grammar – This section of the test contains 50 questions. Nursing students are tested on parts of speech, grammatical errors, important terms, and other grammar-related topics.
- Personality Style, Learning Style, and Critical Thinking – This section of the test assesses individual personality styles, preferred learning styles, and critical thinking abilities. Not all colleges and universities require nursing students to take this section of the HESI examination since it is not used to determine if students are admitted into nursing schools.
- General Knowledge and Vocabulary – This section of the test contains 50 questions. Students are tested on their knowledge of basic vocabulary in the healthcare field.
- Anatomy & Physiology, Biology, and Chemistry – This section of the test contains 25 questions. Some programs may not require that nursing students take this section of the exam for admission.
HESI Mid Curricular
This is the second test that nursing students must take. The HESI Mid Curricular test is taken during the junior year of nursing school. This test is different from the HESI examination that students take to get into nursing school. All examinations are different so nursing students should not expect the questions to be the same on each of these tests.
This second examination covers information that nursing students should know as of their junior year of nursing school. The information is basically a review of the nursing content up to a certain point. The wonderful thing about the HESI Mid Curricular is that it can help nursing students identify their areas of weakness in nursing school. Courses are available that can help students to strengthen their areas of weakness so that they can get back on track. Good scores on this exam are a good indicator of how well nursing students will do the NCLEX examination after graduating and working as nurses.
This examination is also an indicator of whether nursing students should continue in their programs. Poor scores on the examination during the junior year may determine if students are allowed to continue in their nursing programs. Students may have the option to complete makeup work to catch up on the content that they struggle to understand. Remedial courses are also available that can help nursing students get back on the right track so that they are prepared to take the final HESI examination before graduating from nursing school.
HESI Exit Exam
The final examination that nursing students must take is the HESI Exit Exam. At this point, nursing students have taken the test once as an admissions exam and once during their junior year of nursing school. Nursing students should do better on each administration of a HESI examination that they take during their nursing school experiences. Taking a HESI examination and doing worse each time could be an indicator that students will not pass the NCLEX examinations to become licensed nurses.
Every college and university has a different set of rules when it comes to the required HESI examination score that students must take to exit a nursing program. The required passing score should be established at the beginning of the nursing program. If by chance the requirements change, nursing students who are affected by this change, should be contacted immediately to reflect the changes. In some cases, colleges and universities may not require that nursing students meet a minimum score to graduate from a nursing program, but in most cases, they have a set score in place.
It may be a good idea that students enroll in some type of remedial nursing course or HESI preparation program during their senior year of nursing school to boost their chances of passing the examination to earn the right to graduate from nursing school. Again, the results of the Evolve Reach HESI Examination provide a very accurate indicator of how well students will do on the NCLEX examinations. Nursing students should make sure that their skills in the 5 content areas are as high as possible so that they can do their best on the exit examination. Now is the time to strengthen all weak areas in the nursing content so that they have the best chance for HESI exam success.
HESI Study Guide Tips
Studying for the HESI examinations is very important to nursing students’ future careers as nurses. The content that they must know for the HESI examination will help these future nurses to become the best that the nursing industry has to offer. When employers look to hire nurses, they want those who have passed the HEXI exit exam. The reason is that they can be confident that their new hires will likely pass the NCLEX examination to become licensed nurses. Here are a few tips to help with passing the HESI examinations.
- Use online review tools. Some organizations offer review sessions that nursing students can complete completely online. It is necessary to download certain software in most cases to access the review. The organizations that create these programs may even offer information to help students understand complex nursing terminology, and they may even offer assistance with additional study tips of their own.
- Assemble a study group. Nursing students should make sure that they find study group participants who are passionate about nursing and serious about studying nursing content. Every group member should bring expertise in a specific area of the HESI examination so that each person is an asset to the group.
- Attend review sessions on campus. Test preparation organizations, colleges, and universities all offer preparation sessions for the HESI examinations. The sessions usually come at a cost, but they are well worth the money, time, and effort if these sessions help nursing students pass the exam and become nurses.
- Use NCLEX study materials. Since the scores on the HESI are a clear indicator of how students will do on the NCLEX examinations, it may be a good idea if nursing students study content found in NCLEX preparation guides to help them understand the concepts on the HESI examinations. It may be a good idea to talk to the professors in the nursing programs to determine which study guides are the most beneficial. It may be possible to find these study materials at a local library, or students can purchase these study materials online.
- Target specific areas for remediation. Weaknesses in the 5 core area of the HESI examinations can mean trouble for the students who take the exams. It may be a good idea that students find specific study material that target the areas they struggle to understand. For example, if students struggle with medication dosage, they may need to find a book that has this specific focus for help.
- Set aside study time. The fastest way to flunk out of nursing school and fail the HESI examinations is by not studying. Most successful nursing students have to study for several hours per day to be successful. Students should make realistic study goals that they can maintain. Studying must be the main focus for nursing students or they will have trouble passing the HESI exams and, subsequently, the NCLEX examinations.
Recommended Study Guide for HESI Entrance A2, HESI Mid-Curricular , HESI Exit Exam
In order to be success on the HESI exams, such as, HESI A2 Mid-curricular, Exit, a study guide must be used to help you prepare for the exams. The best study guides to get for these exams are the study guides that the HESI company developed themselves. These study guides are very thorough and have what are called “HESI HINTS” in them that helps you narrow down the important facts for you to study.
In order to prepare for the HESI A2 exam this study guide is recommended to help you prepare:
In order to prepare for the HESI Mid-curricular & Exit Exam this study guide is recommended to help you prepare:
HESI Passing Scores
What is considered a passing score on the HESI examination varies by the educational institution. The makers of the examination do not set a specific score that they determine as a passing score. Instead, each college and university creates their own standards by establishing their own passing score for the HESI examinations.
In many cases, a composite score of a 75 to 90, or a score ranging from 750 to 900, is considered passing on the HESI examinations. It is important that nursing students know what is considered a passing score on the HESI examination because some schools require that nursing students pass the HESI examination to graduate from nursing school. They must also pass the HESI entrance examination to get into nursing school. Each nursing student should check with their respective nursing programs to determine the passing score for HESI examinations at the beginning, middle, and end of their nursing programs.
Before becoming nurses, nursing students must take the HESI examinations. The scores on the 3 exams at the beginning, middle, and end of the nursing education programs are clear indicators of how nurses will do on the NCLEX examinations. Low scores may prevent nursing students from continuing in their respective nursing programs. It is important that those who have weak areas in their nursing programs address these issues early so that they can achieve their dreams of becoming nurses.