How I Got a 97.3% on My TEAS VI.
I'm going to be covering what I did to get my score on the test, and hopefully these tactics can help you, too.
I've been seeing a plethora of "Help me study for the TEAS VI" posts on the forum lately, and for good reason. It's a new version of the test; it's uncharted territory; it's scary. I mean, after all, this test is supposed to determine our fate? Some will only take our first passing score?
Let me say this first: the better the student you were in your classes, the easier this test will be. I know this seems a bit obvious to say, but you will have to take an honest look at yourself and understand why some of your peers will have to study very little to succeed while some of your peers will have to study for months to succeed.
Onto what you probably want to know. I'll separate by general steps to do well and then sections by my individual scores. Then I'll briefly talk about how hard the test is. Lastly, some general test-taking tips
I'll be upfront and say this: I didn't study much for this test. Minus the practice exams I took, I studied for about 6 hours. You may need more time, you may need less. I am a tutor for A&P and I have a strong math background, so really I was only studying for two sections.
I only bought the ATI TEAS VI Study Manual, and one ATI online practice test to study. Literally everything is covered by the Study Manual. Yeah, there are some mistakes in it. You can find the corrections online. It's still an immense study resource.
STEP 1: BUY THE ATI TEAS VI STUDY MANUAL AND BUY AT LEAST ONE EXTRA ONLINE PRACTICE EXAM
This is not a plug. I'm not paid or anything to say this. I'm telling you exactly what I did. Honestly, that manual covers 100% of what's on the exam. Aside from this and your notes from A&P, you will need nothing more to prepare for this exam.
STEP 2: TAKE A PRACTICE EXAM BEFORE EVEN STUDYING AT ALL
This seems scary, but just do it. I just did the practice section tests at the end of each section on my study manual to see where I was. This step is crucial in saving you study time. I missed a TON of reading questions, and I missed quite a few English sections. I missed very few math questions, and very few science questions. By taking the practice exam, you'll know exactly what areas you'll need to focus on to make the greatest improvements in the shortest amounts of time.
STEP 3: STUDY YOUR WEAKNESSES
No one likes doing this. It's uncomfortable, and it's so easy to fall into the lull of studying what you know well as positive reinforcement. Well stop it.
Be uncomfortable now while you study so that you can be confident when you walk into your test.
For me, this was reading. I loathe reading. My short attention span can't absorb long passages. It was a real struggle for me to focus, but I knew that if I couldn't overcome this hurdle while preparing for the exam, I would be in deep trouble when test day came around. Deal with the pain now, so you can achieve glory later.
STEP 4: BRUSH UP ON YOUR STRENGTHS
After your brain feels like mush, quickly review your non-problem areas so that they don't become weaknesses. An example for me was this: I only studied for 30 minutes for the math section because I happen to love math and be pretty decent at it. I just wanted to make sure that I wasn't missing any detail in the manual that I didn't think would be covered on the test.
STEP 5: TWO NIGHTS BEFORE, TAKE YOUR LAST PRACTICE EXAM
Up until this point, you should have made your weaknesses into not too much of weaknesses. Heck, maybe you've turned them into strengths. You should have also reinforced your strengths, so you should be well rounded to take the exam.
Try to emulate your test-taking environment.
My TEAS VI was online, so I took an online test. I found a quiet room. I gave myself time limits. I used scratch paper; I used the online calculator; I used #2 pencils. Anything I could replicate, I did. Taking the practice exam in a loud room wouldn't give me a good idea of how well I could take the test. Giving myself too much time wouldn't either. Be honest with yourself. This is a period of assessment. This isn't your real score, so there's no point in lying to yourself to make you feel better. It's only going to make you disappointed when the real thing comes around.
STEP 6: RIGHT AFTER, JUST DO A QUICK SKIM OF WHAT YOU GET WRONG
Sometimes, you just make silly mistakes. Sometimes time gets in the way. Sometimes your problem areas are still going to be problem areas. It happens. Just skim through the concepts that are giving you some trouble and do a quick, last-minute study over it. Really, this final practice test gives you an idea of how to pace yourself through the exam and to troubleshoot some last-minute issues.
STEP 7: CHILL THE NIGHT BEFORE
I'm a firm believer in not cramming. I think it's pretty detrimental, and if you've taken your studying seriously, you should be a bit burnt out. Let your mind take a break before you take the TEAS.
Mental fatigue is real; don't let it happen to you.
STEP 8: TAKE THE TEAS
You've prepared yourself. You've learned all you could learn. You've felt out how the test will feel in terms of time and in terms of difficulty. Trust yourself. Relax. Make sure to read your questions, and do your thing.
READING: 91.5% (95th percentile)
So this was my worst section, but I think that I can still give you some tips to focus on. These are BROAD IDEAS. Really, the study manual covers each concept enough for you to be ready for the exam.
- Main idea, topic sentences, etc.
- What type of passage is it?
- Opinion vs fact.
- What do you find in a Table of Contents, Index, etc.?
- What are conclusions you can draw based off evidence from the passage?
- Following instructions. Rotating shapes, manipulating letter sequences, etc. The manual covers these well.
Really, this section is about how well you can concentrate for a bit of time. My exam was online, so I didn't have to luxury of underlining my passages. I had to rely on my scratch paper. I'd write flow charts as I was reading, jot down key terms I thought would be useful, and anything else I thought would make it easier to answer questions without referring back to the passage over and over again. I think the scratch paper was my biggest friend. Also, skim the questions before reading the passage so you have an general idea of where you have to focus your attention.
MATH: 100% (99th percentile)
There wasn't really anything I struggled with per-se, but while taking the test, It was evident that the crux of this section is your ability to set up a problem correctly. It's not so focused on basic arithmetic because you have a calculator.
- PEMDAS or order of operations. KNOW IT KNOW IT KNOW IT.
- Word problems. Know how to set up a problem. You're not going to get many (3x + 6 = 12) type questions. It'll be more like (If a buy-in at a poker table is 6 dollars, and each hand costs 3 dollars, how many hands can you play with 12 dollars?)
- Add, difference, of, per, etc. Know what these terms mean.
- Areas and perimeters of basic shapes. Basic geometry.
- Learn how to read graphs. This means knowing general bell curves, skews, etc.
- Percentages to decimals to fractions
- Which fraction/decimal is bigger?
Again, focus on CONCEPTS. Just because the manual gives an example of an area of a triangle doesn't mean you should neglect how to get the area of a square or the perimeter for that matter. If it's in the manual, know it! Math is tricky, and it's unfortunate because it's just super hard until it finally clicks. It's just a miserable path until it does click.
SCIENCE: 100% (99th percentile)
Know your A&P. Know your punnet squares. Know your basic chemistry. Really, this section is testing your BASIC A&P knowledge. I've read some ludicrous comments that this section is detailed. Let's square this away real quick. There's about 40 questions to cover 11 organ systems. There simply aren't enough questions for this test to really be that specific. Know your gross anatomy and basic physiology. Yes, you'll have to know your hormone pathways and things like epinephrine and norepinephrine stimulate a sympathetic response. No, you will not need to know that epinephrine and norepinephrine can both use cAMP and PIP3.
- FOCUS on your 11 organ systems. I'd even go so far as to say review your notes about each organ system.
- Punnet squares
- Elements: atomic mass, number, protons, neutrons, electrons
- General chemical reactions
Study your organ systems hard. Focus on gross anatomy and really basic physiology. If I can confide in you guys, I found this section pretty easy. I heard horrors about how detailed it was, so I focused on petty things major sensory tracts in nervous, when really I just needed to know neuron anatomy, and maybe a spinal cord cross section (what goes in each horn and root). I still reckon that the study manual covers what you need to know.
ENGLISH: 100% (99th percentile)
Oh boy, this was also a weakness of mine, but fortunately has very distinct rules that have a definitive right and wrong. I'm going to say this, from the myriad of papers you've written, your grammar is not as bad as you think. I'm assuming most of you guys are native English speakers; use that to your advantage in this section, particularly with the subject-verb agreement stuff.
- Subject-verb agreement. Be sure you can isolate the subject and the verb to make them match up. They'll put some tricky clauses to try and slip you up. Don't fall for it
- What makes a simple/compound/complex sentence?
- Who/whom or they're/their/there
- Context clues to define words
Really, there are only a few rules in grammar you need to know. I'd google the 12 grammar rules for the SAT if you want an in-depth study guide for grammar. I think the study manual does a good job still.
HOW HARD IS IT RELATIVE TO PRACTICE TESTS?
It's about as hard as the ATI practice tests. I think they were excellent barometers for the real thing. If I had to equate a difficulty, I'd say it's about as hard as the high school exit exam, but it also has an A&P section. So, if you've taken the SAT or ACT, both are significantly harder tests. I feel like if you're capable of getting a good grade through the A&P courses, you have the study methods and tenacity to study to excel on the TEAS.
GENERAL TEST TAKING STRATEGIES
Make sure you read your questions fully. Make sure you utilize good test-taking strategies. Eliminate wrong answer choices. Pick the "most right" answer. Don't be afraid to skip questions. If you don't know the answer, might as well use that time to answer questions you CAN figure out instead of spending 5 minutes to ultimately guess. DO NOT SECOND GUESS YOUR GUT INSTINCT. ONLY CHANGE ANSWERS IF YOU READ THE QUESTION OR ANSWER WRONG.
Most of all, relax. This test isn't trying to make you fail. It's a baseline to see how well you can do in these fields.
Thanks for reading all of this. Good luck on your studies and exams!
I'm just an average dude who's aspiring to be a nurse.
Joined Oct '16; Posts: 16; Likes: 35.Nov 30, '16Gotta agree with the "don't second guess yourself" I changed a few correct answers to wrong answers just because to me those answers "sounded better."Nov 30, '16Wow. I am just filled with wonder at your scores; they're quite impressive. I only managed to get a 79.4% with my lowest score being in English and here you are with 100% in 3 of the 4 sections. This article will definitely be helpful for some studying I'll be doing later (I'm retaking the TEAS soon). Thank you so much! By the way, this is completely random but . . . are you Korean by any chance?Nov 30, '16Awesome summary of the TEAS IV. I am an LPN going back for my RN and I have to improve my score. Your post really gives me the confidence to ace it this time around .Dec 1, '16I read your article yesterday and started doing the list of things you mentioned in your list today. I covered temperature formulas and memorized the metric system today. I was wondering if they had any problems converting metric to U.S. units or U.S. units to metric on the test. An example of this is 1 kilometer=0.62 mile. Those are confusing and don't know why they use them. I should probably go ahead and memorize them to be safe. Another quick question for you is what kind of vocabulary words are on the test. I studied the high-frequent words in a S.A.T. book to ameliorate my knowledge in vocabulary. Even if they are not on the test, They are helpful knowledge for use in a future job. Your insight about Hesi V is going to help a lot of people, including me. Thank you.Dec 2, '16Quote from BeaueWhen I took the tests, I did not have to memorize the metric conversion formulas because they were give on the test.I read your article yesterday and started doing the list of things you mentioned in your list today. I covered temperature formulas and memorized the metric system today. I was wondering if they had any problems converting metric to U.S. units or U.S. units to metric on the test. An example of this is 1 kilometer=0.62 mile. Those are confusing and don't know why they use them. I should probably go ahead and memorize them to be safe. Another quick question for you is what kind of vocabulary words are on the test. I studied the high-frequent words in a S.A.T. book to ameliorate my knowledge in vocabulary. Even if they are not on the test, They are helpful knowledge for use in a future job. Your insight about Hesi V is going to help a lot of people, including me. Thank you.Dec 3, '16I have taken the practice tests, how similar are they to the actual test?
I'm assuming the test does not tell you after you answer the question if you got it right or not?Dec 4, '16Quote from emysoboI can only speak for Practice Assesement B.I have taken the practice tests, how similar are they to the actual test?
I'm assuming the test does not tell you after you answer the question if you got it right or not?
The reading portion was more difficult in my opinion. The answer choices were very similar and the correct answer wasn't as obvious as the practice exam.
The math part was actually very similar (if not easier) than the practice questions. Lots of word problems but very simple as long as you know how to set them up.
The science portion was the most "***" to me. Not that it was super difficult but the questions were really random. The answer choices were even more random. Just really study the science section of the ATI study manual. Do the practice questions and find out why each answer choice is wrong/right and then think of how the test makers can use those to "flip" the questions around.
The english section was similar to the practice exam. It might've been easier.Dec 4, '16Thanks. I did better on the B practice test than A but the science was way harder on test B so that's making me very nervous!Dec 5, '16Quote from UnknownChildI'll admit that there were a few questions I was shaky on, but maybe I got lucky and they were the survey questions.Wow. I am just filled with wonder at your scores; they're quite impressive. I only managed to get a 79.4% with my lowest score being in English and here you are with 100% in 3 of the 4 sections. This article will definitely be helpful for some studying I'll be doing later (I'm retaking the TEAS soon). Thank you so much! By the way, this is completely random but . . . are you Korean by any chance?
Yep! I'm Korean!Dec 5, '16Quote from BeaueI think that if there were conversions on the test, they gave you the conversion factors. You don't have to memorize them. For example, if they give you a temp. question, they'll give you that F = (9/5)C + 32.I read your article yesterday and started doing the list of things you mentioned in your list today. I covered temperature formulas and memorized the metric system today. I was wondering if they had any problems converting metric to U.S. units or U.S. units to metric on the test. An example of this is 1 kilometer=0.62 mile. Those are confusing and don't know why they use them. I should probably go ahead and memorize them to be safe. Another quick question for you is what kind of vocabulary words are on the test. I studied the high-frequent words in a S.A.T. book to ameliorate my knowledge in vocabulary. Even if they are not on the test, They are helpful knowledge for use in a future job. Your insight about Hesi V is going to help a lot of people, including me. Thank you.
I'd say the vocab is about on par with the SAT vocab, but the context with which they give you the word is much easier. I also thought the answer choices were much more cut-and-dry for these types of questions than their equivalents on the SAT. Knowing your roots will definitely come in handy, and it's something that I focus on whenever I can because it crops up so often in medical terminology.
Quote from SH4434I reckon it wouldn't hurt to take that first practice test as soon as you can so you can see where you are. If you score relatively low, then obviously start your studying a couple months in advance. If you score relatively well, I honestly don't see the purpose in dragging out a week's worth of studying over months. Bide your time, and then study hard about a week and a half before the exam.How long should you study before taking the exam, would you say?
You know you better than anyone on this forum knows you. If you know that you are a slow learning in something more conceptual like math, take that into consideration and give yourself more time.
The science part is probably the hardest section on the test (and correct me if I'm wrong, but it's also the lowest scoring portion on the test) in that you'll either know the information or not know the information. While you can kind of eliminate some answer choices from pure test-taking strategies, this is hands down the most fact-heavy section. I'd recommend taking the TEAS as soon as you can after your A&P courses. That means take your A&P courses, take the proper measures to study for the test, and go for it. These facts will be the first to deteriorate from your memory, whereas the other 3 sections are more concept-based, and are easier to "figure out" while in the test.
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