The Ultimate Guide to Acing the Nursing Entrance Exams
Nursing not only offers an excellent career path but gives you the flexibility to juggle family, school and other pursuits while still doing your job! Not many careers offer such a rewarding and satisfying profession while giving you that opportunity.
There are a huge number of specialties a nurse can pursue, but all nursing careers require basic training and all start with nursing entrance examinations.
Nursing Entrance ExamsAHPAT or Allied Health Professions Admission Test – This exam will test your academic ability and scientific knowledge and aids in identifying qualified applicants to be admitted to schools of allied health for baccalaureate and post-baccalaureate programs.
Registration deadline is six to eight weeks prior to the test. It is usually conducted at four different times each year: January, April, September and December. However, some locations may differ and not offer all 4 sittings per year so be sure to check well in advance.
The exam lasts three hours and thirty minutes and is a multiple choice format with approximately 300 questions in five different categories.
The number in each category can vary but the following gives you an estimate of questions for each subject:
DET or Diagnostic Entrance Test – This test is designed to assess high school students’ basic knowledge before entering college. The test is designed to determine both your strong areas as well as areas you need to focus on.
You must be a high school graduate to take this exam.
It is comprised of 148 questions in four different areas of expertise: Critical Thinking, English, Math and Reading and Comprehension. A fifth category of Science is optional but would be required for nursing students.
For those pursuing a career in nursing, they must also take the optional section of 60 questions in the category of Science.
The test is given in computer-based format (CBE) or pencil and paper format and students are given up to seventy-five minutes to two hours to complete the exam. Tips for Taking a Computerized test.
HESI or Health Education Systems Inc. – This is a standardized test designed for nursing schools and is a requirement for those pursuing a nursing license. This test is administered at three stages during a student nursing education and is designed to determine the student’s weak areas.
The first time it is taken is during the second semester of the sophomore year and is required for entry to the nursing college. It will test knowledge in comprehension, grammar, math, reading and vocabulary and they must have a score of 80% or higher to pass.
The second time it is taken is the second semester of the junior year and it is a clinical course called FCNU 3051 and will cover all concepts that have been taught until that point. This requires a probability score of at least 850. If they fail the test, it can be taken up to three times to attain a passing score.
The last time it is taken is prior to graduation and the clinical course is called PMNU 4061.
In general the HESI examination will cover seven areas: Anatomy and Physiology, Biology, Chemistry, General Knowledge, Grammar, Math and Reading Comprehension.
HOBET or Health Occupations Basic Entrance Test – This exam will test your abilities that will be needed in a higher education academic environment.
This is a multiple choice examination.
It is designed to identify your weaknesses in skills that are necessary for college and provide you with areas that need to be improved to succeed in college.
It consists of seven critical areas that include: Basic Math, Critical Reading, Effective Learning Approach, Reading Rate & Comprehension, Reading Speed of College Level Material, Social Interaction, Stress Levels, and Test Taking Skills.
NET or Nursing Entrance Test – This test is required by most nursing schools to ensure that prospective students can meet the highly specialized requirements of the program.
The test lasts approximately three hours and is a multiple choice test.
There are seven areas of the exam that include the following: Essential Math Skills, Learning Styles Inventory, Reading Comprehension Skills, Reading Rate, Skill Level Profile, Social Interactions Profile and Test Taking Skills.
The most important parts are the Essential Math Skills and the Reading Comprehension Skills sections and these areas require at least a score of 50 in each.
NLN or National League for Nursing Pre-Admission Exam – This is an entrance exam that is designed for potential nursing students who want to enroll in nursing school.
It is a multiple choice examination and covers the following:
To be eligible to take this exam you must have passed the NET or Nursing Entrance Exam and have not taken it more than three times.
It can be taken two different ways: a computer based or CBE or the standard pencil and paper exam. No calculators are allowed in the testing center, only scratch paper. Tips for Taking a Computerized test
If you fail the exam you are eligible to retest again in six months.
PSB Health Occupations Aptitude Test – This test assesses a student’s ability to complete the nursing education program successfully. It tests five different areas to determine the skills and knowledge that are necessary to achieve this. These areas are:
RNEE or Registered Nurse Entrance Exam – This is the most popular entrance examination used by nursing schools. It requires you to be a high school graduate with basic computer skills and one who has not taken the exam in the prior admission year. Tips for Taking a Computerized testIt is held twice a year in the spring and the fall but each school will have its own schedule.
It is a multiple choice format examination that takes approximately four hours to complete.
The exam is either a computer based or CBE exam or standard pencil and paper exam depending on the nursing school.
It covers five key categories as follows:
TEAS or Test of Essential Academic Skills – This test measures your fundamental academic knowledge prior to enrollment in nursing school.
It is a multiple choice format test with 170 questions.
The questions are at a grade level of tenth to twelfth grade in American high schools.
It is taken in a computer based format or CBE and no calculators are allowed only scratch paper and pencils.
The time allowed is three hours and twenty-nine minutes to complete the exam.Tips for Taking a Computerized test
The test covers four areas as follows:
Basic Study Tips for All Exams
Since all the entrance examinations that are required for nursing have known testing areas with many similarities between them, it is important to concentrate on these and focus on any known areas of concern. The following tips will help you achieve top results and breeze through your exams to become a nurse.
Tips for Taking Multiple Choice Exams
Prepare Yourself Mentally for an exam
Maintain a positive attitude and give yourself plenty of time to study using all tools that are available to you thus giving you ample resources. These simple strategies will give you the leading edge on ensuring that you pass your nursing entrance exams and start you on a career path that will be rewarding and fulfilling.