How Is the HESI Exam Scored?
The Health Education Systems, Inc. Admissions Assessment (HESI A2) is scored on a percentage system, where the highest HESI score possible is 100%. Students' HESI exam results contain a percentage score for each of the subtests taken as well as a cumulative score, which is the average score of all the subtests.
It is important to understand that there is no set passing or required score that applies to all test-takers. Each school determines its own HESI A2 score requirements. Individuals preparing to take the HESI A2 need to check the admission guidelines for the postsecondary institution they are applying to.
Which HESI Tests Factor Into My Score?
The HESI test is comprised of nine tests that evaluate a nursing or health sciences program applicant's academic readiness. These subtests are:
English Language (55 questions per test)
- Reading Comprehension
- Vocabulary and General Knowledge
Basic Math (55 questions)
- Basic Math Skills
Science (30 questions per test)
- Anatomy and Physiology
Learner profile (unscored)
- Learning Style (14 test items)
- Personality (15 test items)
Each school determines which subtests to use in its scoring determination. For example, one college might only require Grammar, Reading Comprehension, Vocabulary and General Knowledge, and Math tests. Another school might also require the Biology, Chemistry, and Anatomy and Physiology, tests.
What Are Some Typical Program Requirements for HESI Scores?
In some cases, schools establish expectations for individual HESI A2 test scores. For example, schools may require students to earn a score of at least 75% on the Basic Math Skills test or 85% on Reading Comprehension. These schools may set minimum score requirements on all the subtests they require or they may have minimum score requirements for just some of the required tests. Students concerned about scoring requirements on individual subtests can check with their schools prior to taking the exam.
High cumulative scores may also be needed to apply to some nursing programs. Elsevier, the creator of the HESI A2, reports that it's common for registered nursing programs to expect applicants to have a cumulative score of 75% on the HESI A2, while students applying to licensed practical or licensed vocational nursing programs may only need to have a cumulative score of 70% to qualify. Bear in mind, each college or university that uses the HESI A2 can establish their own score requirements for aspiring students. For example, Louisiana State University's admission requirement is a cumulative score of 80%, while Chamberlain University expects applicants to earn a minimum cumulative score of 73%.
How Do HESI Exam Results Affect My Application?
In addition to using HESI exam scores to determine a nursing program applicant's eligibility, some schools use test results to determine priority seating when there are more applicants than openings in a program. For example, a school might use an HESI score conversion to award a certain number of application points to students who have a cumulative HESI exam score range from 90% to 100%. These points would then be added to points received for other admissions considerations, such as GPA.
When Are HESI Exam Scores Available?
Test-takers can receive their HESI exam score on the computer after they complete the HESI A2 test. A more detailed score result is provided via test-takers' Evolve account within around seven days of testing.
What If I Don't Score Well on the HESI Test?
Many colleges and universities allow individuals to take the HESI A2 again if their scores don't meet the minimum requirements. Some schools have waiting periods; others may limit the number of times a person can test within an application period. It is important to check on the retake policy for the college that you plan to attend to know what your options are.
How Do I Prepare to Retake the HESI Exam?
Elsevier offers a remediation program to all individuals who do not succeed on their first attempt on the HESI A2. The remediation program is designed to help students improve their scores in the areas where they had difficulty. There is no charge for Elsevier's remediation training, which includes online materials targeted to the test areas where a student could use some improvement.
Students might also consider the HESI Admission Assessment Exam Course, an online study program created to guide individuals preparing for the HESI A2 through all of the information that they will be tested on. Students who take this class can fit in study time at their convenience while working through the 109 lessons offered.