Planning for the TEAS

Planning for TEAS

The TEAS is an academic screening test for nursing program entrants, who are seeking admission into certain nursing colleges in the U.S. TEAS is short form for "Test of Essential Academic Skills" and as the name suggests, it is designed to test necessary academic skills of applicants.

Important Aspects of TEAS

The following is a brief summary of 10 key characteristics of the nursing entrance examination:

  1. The academic skills of students are tested in the areas of Science, Math, English and Reading.

  2. Most nursing programs colleges that require this test, use a composite weighted score to assess applicants' skills. The score is only one part of this composite score used for assessment. Generally, the colleges also consider previous academic qualifications and GPA records of the applicants, during the selection process.

  3. A total of 170 questions will appear in the test.

  4. The complete test duration is 209 minutes. Each test area or section has specific number of scored questions and time limits, as mentioned below:

    • Reading - 42 questions, 58 minutes
    • Math - 30 questions, 51 minutes
    • Science - 48 questions, 66 minutes
    • English - 30 questions, 34 minutes

  5. An additional set of 20 un-scored questions is also provided within the test.

  6. The test is available in two formats, namely, paper-based and computer-based.

  7. All the questions in the test are multiple-choice items with 4 choices.

  8. The questions types and subjects, that will appear in each test section are summarized as follows:

    • Reading- Reading comprehension
    • Math- Basic entities, data interpretation, algebra and measurements
    • Science- Human Body, Life, Earth and Physical sciences and Scientific Reasoning
    • English- Basic grammar, punctuation, spelling and sentence structure

  9. You may view the entire list of authorized ATI test centers, by state and city, at this ATI link - It is also recommended that you check if the college of your interest has its own ATI testing center.

  10. Each testing center will be associated with specific costs, rules and requirements. The college(s) of your interest may also have certain admission rules and deadlines. You must review all these requirements, along with the time required for test preparation, before you decide a date and location for taking the test.

10-Step Prep Plan for this Test

Here is a 10-step test preparation plan that will help you succeed in the test:

Step 1: Visit the ATI website and meet your college administrator to gather all the details regarding the test.

Step 2: Buy at-least 3-4 best comprehensive study guides for preparation. We recommend the official ATI TEAS V Study Manual and McGraw-Hill's Nursing School Entrance Exams.

Step 3: Buy or gather as many practice tests as possible. We recommend the following: McGraw-Hill's 5 TEAS Practice Tests and TEAS V Online Practice Assessments Form A and Form B.

Step 4: To begin with, attempt one or both of the online tests in TEAS V Online Practice Assessments. This will give you an idea of the real test and how difficult or easy the test sections are. Thereafter, quickly get a glimpse of the contents of the study guides that you have purchased.

Step 5: You will now have an idea about how hard and how much time you will need to prepare for the test. Based on the number of weeks or days in your estimate, you may now pick your test date and time. An alternative approach would be to start your preparation and thereafter, book your test date and location, when you reach 50% of your target.

Step 6: With the estimate from the previous step, prepare a concise study prep plan, along with a milestone chart. In your plan, you may allocate x amount of days/weeks for studying each test section or each study guide. Note: The science section is very exhaustive, so it definitely needs more preparation time.

Step 7: Follow your plan and get studying.

Step 8: Gauge your progress by tracking your plan, and tick off items in the milestone chart.

Step 9: Take as many as practice tests as possible, at the end of your test preparation and before your actual test date. Time your practice tests based on actual test limits and make sure you attempt as many test questions as possible. Avoid spending more than one minute per test question. Skip difficult test questions and come back to them at the end of the test for a review.

Step 10: Stay calm and composed on the day of the test. Arrive early for the test. Also be aware that there are usually no breaks during the actual test.

You may customize parts of this plan to suit your learning needs and style. However, be assured, that a systematic plan and subsequent execution of the plan, such as this, will definitely guarantee good scores!

We hope this article has answered most of the questions of aspiring nurses also provided you with a clear road-map ahead. Wish you all the best for an excellent TEAS score!