This past Monday I took my HESI a2 for the first time. I've been reading up on it a lot as well as studying for this exam for about a month. When I had completed the test I found out that I had failed every single section. I was absolutely devastated and couldn't figure out how in the world I had failed this test.
I have a 4.0 GPA and couldn't pass my HESI, now that just blew my mind.
I want to give some insight to the HESI real quick so maybe I can help some other people who may have failed or are fixing to take it and what things to AVOID doing. Learn from my mistakes!
1. Researching for the HESI. It is great to do research on the HESI and what you are fixing to test over so you have an idea of what you are fixing to go into. I did this and it was really helpful being able to read what you should study and what the test may be mostly about.
**Here is a warning and tip**
I would youtube videos and also look on this form to see what I could find out and especially if there was a different way to study for this test. DO NOT study for this test any differently than you would like any other exam! This is just a test do not think of this as something huge and that your life depends on it. You will psych yourself out during the test. Just like the compass test its basic knowledge on what you already know (if you've taken all your classes in college that covers these topics at least).
2. Do not study late in the day. I think one of my problems was I would come home at night after I got done doing what I was doing for the day and studying into the early mornings of 2 a.m. and then go to bed. Do not do this. In my opinion my brain could not process this all correctly none the less remember it because I would study until I was on the verge of passing out from exhaustion. When you study, make sure you have a good nights rest, you've eaten something that will give you energy, and do NOT start your study session at midnight.
3. Take a break during the test. When I tested I could take breaks in between if I wanted to, and honestly I should of. My test was only 4 1/2 hours all together and I never took an actual break in between. In your sections that you can choose which to test on next just take a breather! If you are aloud to bring a snack in (which my proctor said just don't bring in biscuits) then do so! Don't feed yourself junk the night before and do not eat something heavy the morning of (like pizza the night before). Just something that will fill you up and give you energy so you don't wear down in the middle of your test.
4. How to take this test. On this test you can choose which section you want to do in the order you want to take them. Now this is where I think I went wrong. I read to take your hardest sections first and then take your easier sections last because then it will be a breeze to get through the rest. FALSE. I feel like if you take your hardest sections first (and this is just my opinion) then your confidence level may not be as high when you take your easier sections. I took math first (which I will admit I'm not good in) and I think after a few questions I lost confidence in myself and then it was just a chain reaction after that.
Math really consist of a lot of ratios, fractions, and metric measurement.
Personally I would take the Comprehension English first. There is a lot of reading and that took a lot of my time. I also felt like I was pushed for time and I rushed through a lot of my test (which could be also why I failed). In Anatomy it is basically over Anatomy 2, know your muscle groups, cell membrane, and the function of organs. The rest like grammar is more so of what fits into this sentence and which would make this sentence grammatically correct. Critical thinking is really just your common sense on what you would do in the medical situations that you are given. There isn't a wrong choice but there is a choice that is better than the rest. Always think what is the FIRST thing I should do? I scored a 790 on that and I think I could of scored better but like I said, I think a lot of my confidence and my time limit had me on the edge of my seat and I was just ready to get it over with.
5. Last but not least. SLEEP. Get a good nights rest before you take your test. I tried that and I had so many nightmares my sleep was almost non-existent. Relax the day before your test and put down the book. Get yourself into a better sleeping routine so you will be more likely to fall asleep at a decent hour if you aren't already. Just relax and know that you will give it your best shot and you WILL pass that test because you are more than capable of doing so! If you have gotten this far and you fail then in my opinion (just like me for example) you probable just psyched yourself out and rushed yourself!
**What I studied with**
I studied The Idiots Guide to Nursing Entrance Exams and I would not recommend it. I was told by a fellow classmate to use this for the HESI because she used this before and aced her TEAS test. I had also bought the study guide for the HESI test at my college and never once looked at it. This time I will be strictly studying that book to see if that will give me better insight. I also went to hesia2practicetest.com and I do feel like that had A LOT of similar questions on the actual HESI, especially the math!!
I take my last HESI attempt July 28th and will defiantly be studying until then. Good luck to everyone who will be taking this test for the first time or for anyone like me who will be retaking this test!
If you have any questions just let me know! I will try and answer them for you in the best way possible!:)