HESI Exit exam, are scores really predictable of passing NCLEX? - page 2

I'm on a roll today! loL! Anyways, My school had us do HESI exams during every semester and then one big exit exam at the end. They say if you score higher than 850 on HESI you have a good chance... Read More

  1. by   Mursedoc2b
    This standardized "exit" exam, or "gate" exam culture is a multiheaded beast that is the offspring of a pressured school, institutions such as the ANA, and the state regulatory boards to keep the public "safe" from the "knowledge deficit" that new graduating nurse suffer from. It is the entire system and the way that it is set up. Ask ANY working RN where they got all of the vast knowledge in nursing. They will almost all say, "my first two years on the floor." I haven't met a nurse yet that has said, "nursing school." School is there to give you the basics and to prep you for the NCLEX. Well, they are pressured to put out students that will pass the NCLEX their first time the take it. If they do not, it is a mark against them as far as staying an accredited school. Now, most state boards (nursing) will tell you and the school that "gating" is illegal. This is true, as many students have filed suit against schools for not giving them their degrees or not allowing them to sit for the NCLEX. HESI is not a good predictor of NCLEX. This has been a hotly debated issue for a while now. Most instructors would agree that this is true. But on the other side of the coin, you have a company, (HESI, ATI) that need to stay in business. How? well to show the school that "their" testing and instruction is a fine, or good, or a general predictor of how well a student will do with the NCLEX. Don't buy into the hype. Its a sales pitch from the company. They need the schools to think they need their services. HESI, ATI, and others are nothing like the NCLEX. Have you ever noticed how vague, unclear, or confusing HESI questions are? Then How clear, concise, and to the point practice NCLEX questions are? I'm about to take my exit HESI next week and they tell us if we do not meet the min. score of 850 we will not graduate. We have two chances of passing with this min. score. They were told once already by the state board of nursing that they cannot have these types of test. So...what did they do? they just made the test a final and made it count for 25% of your grade. So in incense, even if you have a 100% going into this "final", if you fail it, under the min. 850, you get a 0 for the final which would give you a final grade of 75% which in my school is not passing. We need a min. grade of 77. So though they don't call it a "gate" test, It is. and therefore illegal. They did not tell me this when I was recruited by the school for my BSN. I was looking for accelerated BSN programs since i already had a previous BS degree. They did not inform me "oh by the way, we have an exit exam that we set the standards for, not the state, but us. If you don't pass it, even after you have paid us 40K and passed all your other classes with great grades, we are not going to give you your degree, therefore not letting you take you NCLEX. if that ok? here ya go, sign here please." Really? do you think that maybe i would have thought about going to another school that gives you unlimited chances, or maybe doesn't have one of the illegal exit exams? I understand that if it was explained to me in the beginning of the program, that would be my decision to make. I did not find out about this exit exam until the 3rd semester. We only have 4 semesters in the accelerated program. I'm not going to post which school this is for legal purposes. But they seem only concerned with how much money they are making, and what their reputation is, as far as NCLEX first time pass rate. If any of you whom are reading this, please look at and read the article by the NLN (National League for Nursing) called "The fair testing imperative in nursing education." by the NLN board of governers. on their concerns that schools are being unfair to students. The direct quote from the article, "It is the prevalent use of standardized tests to block graduation or in some other way deny eligibility to take the licensing exam that is most concerning to the NLN." Read it. Know your rights. fight for your education. You are not a score on a standardized test that doesn't measure squat. Sorry this is so long, but I had to get this off my mind for it has been bothering me for a while now. Do I think i'll pass their min. standards test? yes, I do, but that is not the issue. I feel it is a great injustice in the system that needs immediate attention and correction.
  2. by   mackenzie-rn-bsn
    My school required mid-curricular and exit HESI exams. Although these tests were very important, our grades did not keep the class from graduating or passing the course- it only counted for a small percentage of our overall grade. We were told that we needed to reach the benchmark of 900, and majority of the class was well under that for the mid-curricular exam. By the exit HESI, many students met the benchmark, but a lot of other students and I were only reaching the 600-800s. I believe I only got 810. We were told we would not be fully prepared to take the NCLEX, and the teachers recommended 6-8 hours of studying NCLEX material per day after graduation or to take a remediation course- needless to say, the were not at all confident we had any chance to pass the NCLEX.

    I graduated on Dec 18th, and my Kaplan online live review course (which was integrated with one of my senior classes) started on January 2nd. From the 2nd until my NCLEX date of January 22nd (I was the first of my graduating class to take the NCLEX), I studied MINIMUM of 6 hours per day. I completed all of the Kaplan Qbanks, all question trainers, and remediated everything. I passed the NCLEX in 75 questions on my first attempt. My point is that even if you are well below the benchmarks for the HESI exams, it CAN be done. I highly recommend a Kaplan review course after you graduate because I'm confident this is what helped me to pass. I slowly started to see my practice exam scores improve, and Kaplan absolutely helps you to understand how to answer questions. It's impossible to learn everything in such a short amount of time, so learn what the NCLEX is really asking. It's all about if you can be a safe nurse.

    In my case, the HESI was not helpful in my preparations for the NCLEX. I simply learn a different way. Being able to review and practice on my own time was invaluable.

    Good luck!