Just finished taking HESI A2! My experience might help you...

Hi everyone!

I just got out of my HESI A2 exam with a 95% overall score. Test preparation was the key to getting a good composite score, so I thought I'd share my test prep tips.

I took the following sections:

*Reading comprehension
*Vocabulary & general knowledge
*Anatomy & Physiology
*Learning styles
*Personality test

Best test prep for the MATH section: the Elsevier HESI Admission Assesment Exam Review books--either the second or third edition. The two editions are nearly identical except that the third edition contains an algebra section and color drawings! Everything else is exactly the same.

This is the best math prep because the problems in the books mirror the problems on the test. Practice, practice, practice! Complete all the practice problems after each section as well as the larger battery of math questions at the end of the book. Even if you think you know the basics, PRACTICE the problems because it's really easy to make a tiny mistake and submit the wrong answer. I scored 100% on the math section, and I believe that happened because I started studying about a month before my test date. I spent a little time (almost) every day with a couple of longer (1.5-2 hour) sessions thrown in on non-work days.

Best test prep for the A&P section: again, the Elsevier HESI books--either second or third edition--along with Cliffs Notes A&P and flash card/test sets on Quizlet. It's been four years since I took A&P I and II, so I knew I'd have to brush up. I scored a 90% on this section because I took time to review A&P terminology/vocabulary. Again, I gave myself about a month to prepare, increasing my study time in the week before the test. The "just the basics" format of the Cliffs guide and the repetition of the Quizlet sets helped a lot.

I have seen several posts that complain about the Elsevier HESI books' A&P review. I actually found the books helpful because they gave me an idea of the

of questions asked on the actual test. I've noticed some posters are surprised when the review questions don't show up verbatim on the test. That shouldn't be the expectation, but you should expect the review to acquaint you with relevant question types. It's hard to describe this without giving specific examples from my test, but hopefully you know what I mean.

Best review for reading comprehension/vocabulary/grammar: Once again, the Elsevier HESI review books. I recommend completing all practice questions--those at the end of each section as well as the ones at the end of the book(s). Also, make mental note of the "HESI Hint" boxes in each section--for some reason I found a lot of this information really helpful on the actual test. Ultimately, I knew these sections would be the easiest ones for me, so I spent far less time studying for them and kind of consolidated my preparation.

Best review for personality test/learning styles: Knowing best how you learn, and whether you're introverted or extroverted--no studying required! There are no right or wrong answers on these sections, so just respond honestly and don't stress.

General testing tips:

1) Thoroughly read the directions before answering a question. Each section contains several different question types with different instructions that you should understand before selecting an answer.

2) Use scratch paper for math problems to write out each step. Even though you don't get credit for showing your work, writing out each step prevents small errors and wrong answers! This method is also better than relying on "mental math" if you don't have to.

3) Complete your "challenging" section first, when you're most alert. I felt better about tackling the remainder of the test once my hardest section was out of the way.

I apologize for the epic length of this post, but I wanted to share my experience and emphasize that a little work beforehand pays off in the end. I don't recommend taking the HESI A2 cold because tiny mistakes can add up and cost you valuable points.

Good luck to everyone who's taking the HESI A2.


This was VERY helpful! I don't take my exam until December, but I really want to be prepared to ace this exam.

The tips are appreciated!


Your Awesome! Thanks!

Hey! Thanks for much for the tips. I'm taking the test in two weeks with the exact portions you took. I've been studying for the past 2 months just going over the sections but now I really need to buckle down. What kind of questions were asked on the A&P section? Did you find a certain body system most asked about?

The A&P questions were really all over the map!

If you take a look at the Elsevier/Evolve study guide mentioned in my original post, you'll get an idea of the types of questions answered and the level of knowledge the questions require. The body systems rundown given in that section is a useful review of basic info that could appear on your upcoming HESI test. The actual HESI test questions reminded me more of A&P trivia than an attempt to gauge in-depth conceptual knowledge.

In general (since we are not allowed to post specific test questions on AllNurses), I would say to review:

*Relationship between the hypothalamus and the pituitary gland
*Names and origin of tropic hormones
*Anatomy of the heart
*Directional terms
*Liver and kidney functions
*Parts of the integumentary system (dermal/epidermal layers)
*Organelles of the cell
*Major tissue types

I also studied from the following Quizlet set and it was really helpful:

HESI A2 Entrance - A&P flashcards | Quizlet

I alternated between the flash card mode and the test mode.

Much luck to everyone taking the HESI A2--you can do it


Thank you Jennie! This is very helpful since I did the worst on the A & P section the last time I took the HESI!

Thanks for the breakdown. I take mine Sept 13 and as soon as summer school is over I will begin studying.

Thanks for the information...I passed my HESI today and I'm thrilled! I used the information above to study ( A & P)....

I'm so glad it's over....

How was the A&P portion? Did you just study the quizlet and topics that she had mentioned or did you expand on that a lot more? I take mine on Tuesday and I am so nervous! Also, how in depth were the questions?

I take mine on wednesday!!! ^^^ same questions!!

Thank you so so much!!! I just ordered the A2 guide and was worried that it wouldn't be enough! I take mine in October and was really freaking out! Thanks for calming my nerves

The questions on the A & P were so random...it asked all sorts of questions...I believe some were on the different systems...What system is responsible for carrying nutrients? Something like that....I received a 70% and the school I'm attending doesn't use the score ( I can take my pre-requs as part of the program).

Honestly I found this test to be EASY..I studied for two weeks ( about an hour to two hours a day). I received a score of over 90% on all subjects ( math, reading, vocab, grammer, and critical thinking). If your math is rusty ( mine was as I haven't been in high school in over 15 years) I also bought a GED Math book. Let me tell you that was by far the best book ever-lots of examples.

I was also going to take the TEAS V and this book doesn't give clear examples on math which the GED book helped.

You will be fine...the A & P portion had random questions...just study the systems ( what does what)...Mitosis vs Meosis...

@Red35: Thanks for calming my nerves...I want to take this exam before the school I hope to attend changes their requirement. I have the Teas V book as well and it is so overwhelming because it is so much information to take in. Thanks again...

if you don't mind me asking..when are you taking the test?

if you don't mind me asking..when are you taking the test?
I don't have a set day, but I would like to take it in the next couple of months (once I feel prepared).

Good luck let us know when you take the exam

Hello, thank you for your helpful information.
I have a question...Jena did you get the paper book or the online kit for the Elsevier HESI Admission Assesment Exam Review books?
I went on amazon to order it but it keep this online kit access code.... so which one do u suggest, if u please give me a link to it...


Good luck to every one...

So when you say that you can pick which sections to do...how does that work? Do you pick one at a time to do? Also I read somewhere you can't go back, is this true? Was everyone given paper and pencil? I hear some testing centers are using white-boards now.


Hey guys, I took HESI last week and made 96% as cumulative score. I thought the test wasn't that bad except English reading part because English is my second language.

Just took my HESI A2 Exam at Lehman College... Here's some tips so maybe you can have a better experience than I did. Unfortunetly my school never informed me or anyone for that matter when you could sign up for the exam, they told me I'd be given a test date when I submitted my application. So I finally found out too late and there was only 1 section left open which was 10 days later. I did not have the proper time to actually study for this exam but I did spend 2 hrs a night studying Davis's step by step math for nurses (which is a break down of ratios, proportions, measurements, fractions, decimals, etc. I also made an a&p study guide on my own from the Quizlet Hesi A2 A&P Practice deck. (HESI A2 Entrance - A&P flashcards | Quizlet) I knew that critical thinking and reading comprhension was my strongest suite so I spent very little time on these two subjects.

I noticed that the test was very random with the A&P and the math questions, although the math was very basic, I am very bad with math and because I had so little amount of time to prepare I got stuck on a lot of the questions.

Mostly all the math questions were ratios and adding, subtracting, dividing, and multiplying mixed numbers plus regular fractions. There was also a lot of word problems (which I'm horrible with) The regular adding, subtracting of whole numbers and decimals was easy because they provide a calculator on the test. I suggest you spend most of your time on ratios, proportions, how to solve word problems, and fractions. The only conversions I had were gallons to cups, ounces to cups, and ounces to pints. 3 questions on that. I had 2 questions about military time.

The A&P questions I had that I can remember were "where is the mitral valve located" "which vessel brings nutrients to the liver" "which organ absorbs nutrients" "where is the cabaneous located" "what is the function of carbon dioxide in the body" "what is the sebaceous gland" "what is the function of the hypothalmus" and 1 question about meiosis nothing on mitosis. That's all I can really remember.

50 reading comprehension questions (multiple choice)
50 math questions (about 6 fill-ins the rest multiple choice)
30 A&P questions (multiple choice)
30 Critical thinking questions (multiple choice)

The critical thinking was set up like this:
Patient: description of patient
Situation: condition they were in and scenario
Action you should take: gives 4 or 5 different answers and you have to choose the best 1.

I got an 83% on A&P
I got a 90% on Reading Comp.
& a 70% on Math

I failed the test because of my math, you have to get a 75% or higher in each section or you are not able to be considered for admission to the program. Now I am stuck with no plan B. I really hope you take what I wrote into consideration and prepare!!! It's basic stuff but its random stuff so it's a little bit tricky.

Good luck all!!

Thank you for the information. I will be taking the hesi exam next month .

Are we allowed a calculator on the math portion or is it all hand jammed?

Are we allowed a calculator on the math portion or is it all hand jammed?
There's a calculator built into the exam.

grtt info!

WOW great job! I'm taking mine in dec. Wish me lots of luck!

Thank you so much for this information! I did make a 75 on math but I want to retake to increase my overall score. I will look at this info.

Same here I take mine also in December

i live in houston. do u have any study groups. i need help with the math.

Hey I live in Houston, have you taken the exam yet?

Great advice, thank you

I will take HESI A2 exam next month and I don't need the Chem & Bio section. So should i just leave that? or i need to attempt the whole exam? thanks in advance

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