Hello everyone! I have just taken my HESI Exam for the second time. The first time I took the HESI, I had signed up for the wrong school and missed a section that the school I wanted required. Due to this, I had to retake the whole exam! (Frustrating, I know). Im going to share my experience to see if I can help anyone else!
First time (Math, Grammar
, Reading, Anatomy, Critical Thinking): Overall: 90%
Second time (Math, Grammar, Reading, Anatomy, Vocabulary): Overall: 91.1%
I only paid for two study materials, the HESI Admission Assessment Exam Review from Elsevier (Edition 4) and for the full version of Pocket Prep (Around $14 I think).
Reading (96% to an 88%):
Okay, I have no idea how I did worse the second time around. I actually found reading to be much easier the second time around, I guess I was wrong. I STRONGLY suggest you do the reading section first. I personally feel like this is the most draining part, and you should be alert and focus for this section, not tired. I never practiced for the reading section or studied, due to the fact that this is like any normal reading test you find in SAT/ACT/TAKS and etc. The passages are short, however, some questions are tricky. When they ask for what a word means in a passage, even if you think you know what it means, choose the definition that matches that sentence best. TAKE YOUR TIME for this section; stressing or rushing will just result in you answering wrong!
Math (92% to an 94%):
I am HORRIBLE at math, it is my worst subject always, however, this section is very doable. This section is also very time consuming, but always make sure to recheck your answers. I did this section second so I can finish all the time consuming sections first. You will have a small computer calculator on the side of your screen, my testing center gave me laminated paper and markers to do my calculations. The first time I took this section, I breezed through it, however, I found this section much harder the second time around. The second time around there were much more conversion questions (maybe around 10-15). The other majority of the questions are multiplying, adding, subtracting and dividing fractions. KNOW YOUR RATIOS AND FRACTIONS. This will be about 70-80% of your test! There are several word problems (but easy) and fill in the blanks. I got about 2 algebra questions each time. I never got a question on temperature conversions or roman numerals. I was actually really nervous to get my score back the second time around because I wasn't confident at all, however, I somehow pulled through. The only thing you need to study for this section is the Edition 4 exam review book from Elsevier.
Do all the practice problems in the book even if you think you know it!!!
Grammar (84% to an 92%):
Okay, this section was possibly the most hardest section for me. The first time around, I blindly guessed through half the sections and wanted to cry because I just didnt know any of the answers. The Pocket Prep and the practice tests that I found online are NOT like how the test actually is. Most of the questions are "Choose what word is wrong" in the sentence. KNOW THE RULES AND SUBJECT-VERB AGREEMENT. When coming across these questions, I suggest looking first if the subject and verb agree. If you think they do, then look for a misspelled word or if a certain word seems awkward. I had no idea how to study this section the second time around so I didnt really. The second time around was SO MUCH EASIER.
HESI A2- Grammar & Vocabulary Practice Test Part 1 Flashcards | Easy Notecards
I used this as practice, and this is the most similar to the test in my opinion. Know the differences between lay/lie, affect/effect, my sister and me vs my sister and I, and also how to use apostrophes correctly and etc.
POCKET PREP -> The questions are not similar but it will help you learn grammar, like subject verb agreement and more. This is probably what helped me most.
Anatomy: (88% to an 88%):
Okay, who isnt nervous for this section?? This section is what I poured my study time into. Both times seemed equal to each other, not harder nor easier. I breezed through this section both times because this is a matter of you know it or you don't know it. This section is usually very basic, but some questions are very detailed. You will probably come across a question that you should know, but just neglected to study because you thought it was too easy and that you already knew it. DO NOT MAKE THIS MISTAKE! Study broad. When studying, do NOT focus on the little details. Know the hormones of the endocrine system, the body planes, general bones (not specific, for example, know that femoral is the thigh, and etc.) general information on the brain, ear, and eyes and etc. Again, don't focus on small details. I refused to read my whole anatomy book to study because I felt that would overwhelm me and I would focus on small details.
What I used to study for this section:
Anatomy & Physiology
-> This is what I mostly studied. SUPER SUPER Helpful. Memorize everything from these powerpoints!! I went through them almost everyday. It basically breaks down the general topics of the book without overwhelming you.
Free Nursing Flashcards about HESI-A2 ANATOMY
-> Also VERY helpful, it was a really good review, I also went through this 2-3 times a week.
Pocket Prep -> I did about 100-200 questions a week, read the explanations even if you get the question correct. If you do good on pocket prep, it means its a good sign!!
Search "hesi antomy practice test" on google -> Practice Test on this section really helped me! It helped me learn concepts and gave me a good feel of the test.
Man... whoever says that studying the HESI Exam Review book is enough are lying to you or are just very lucky on their test. For the section, I also wanted to cry because I felt like I didnt know a good half of the words on this test. This test will give you a sentence, and it will be a fill in the blank, which word matches best. Yes, memorize the HESI book words, but is that enough? No. I also went on quizlet and memorized all the words but I was still missing a good 20 words on the test that I had no idea what it meant. So I knew about 30 of the words and then the other 20, I had to guess. This section really is more on using your context clues. I actually had a few grammar related questions on the exam, maybe 2-3. I don't know how I got this score to be honest, I wish the luck to you all. Maybe I wasnt studying the right quizlets!
What I used:
HESI A2 words Flashcards | Quizlet
HESI, Hesi A2, Hesi A2 Vocab, New Hesi Flashcards | Quizlet
Critical Thinking (840):
This is a tricky section! I left this section for last the first time I took this test. This section is more on testing your thought process. Always remember that the PATIENT comes first, not the bed, not the charts, not other people, just the patient. The answer choices will all be correct, however, it is up to you to choose which one comes first and which one will benefit your patient the most!!
I studied for this exam for a month. However, I personally found this TOO long. I feel like if you dedicated a good 1-2 weeks on studying for this exam, you will be fine. I personally feel like studying too long can actually be worse. I studied different sections everyday, but I felt like after awhile, I was running out of things to study and then became lazy. The only section you truly need to study for continually is Anatomy and Vocabulary.
I took this test 8am. If you're taking it this early, I suggest eating 1-2 bananas before the test for energy and for your tummy not to be too hungry. Use the restroom before the test. I have stomach problems, so this may be only my concern, but I suggest you do the number 2 BEFORE the test. Even if you feel like you dont have to go, I suggest you try and do it anyway. It is horrible if you want to go during the test and then your time will be running while you're in the restroom. I also ate a cough drop before my test to keep me awake
ALSO, for my test, it showed the score immediately after finishing a section. I dont know if this is the same for all, but I could switch sections any time I wanted to. I just couldnt go back to questions I already answered. What I did was that in every section, I finished up to the SECOND LAST question and then switched to another section. After doing this for every section, I went back and finished each section. Why did I do this?
-> I did this so I did not have to see the score I got after finishing a section. I do not know about yall, but I would be extremely discouraged if I saw I did poorly on a section. Knowing I did bad on a section would not make me want to do the other sections with my full abilities. That is why I waited to the very end to see each score of every section.
SORRY for such a long post! Hopefully this will help someone (: