What Is the TEAS Exam?

How Does the TEAS Test Your Skills?

TEAS being a pre-requisite step in the nursing admission process, many might wonder what is it all about. Here is a primer on the TEAS test. In addition to explaining what is the TEAS exam, this article also tries to enlighten you on how it tests your skills.

What Is the TEAS Exam?

Developed and conducted by the Assessment Technologies Inc. (ATI), a premier company working in the nursing education field, the Test of Essential Academic Skills (TEAS) is an evaluative measure of academic abilities and associated skill levels. Currently in its fifth version and called TEAS V, this test is considered an excellent predictor of future success in basic-level nursing programs. Many nursing institutions and other healthcare educational institutions in the United States today, rely on the TEAS scores (along with other vital parameters) for making their admission decisions for certain nursing programs.

The test is conducted in the core academic areas and skill sets of English, Math and General Science, as required for successfully completing college-level nursing programs. The test also tries to analyze the test takers' strongholds and shortcomings, so that appropriate remedial programs can be arranged for them in time, without letting the shortcomings coming in the way of the nursing school progress.

The TEAS is an invigilated or proctored test and the test duration is 209 minutes. The test transcripts are generally sent after 48 hours of test taking to the testing site. You may also arrange to send the transcripts to other institutions by paying an extra fee amount. To know more about 'what is the TEAS exam?' you may refer to the official, ATI testing website: https://www.atitesting.com/Solutions/PreNursingSchool/TEAS.aspx

What is Covered in the TEAS Exam?

While trying to understand what is the TEAS exam, we also should look at what is included in this test. There are four core areas tested in the TEAS V, such as:

  • English and Language usage: This section tries to evaluate the language abilities of candidates in terms of grammatical knowledge. Questions covering Basic, Intermediate, and Advanced Grammar topics, punctuation and nouns are included.

  • Reading: The Reading section measures the vocabulary skills and reading comprehension abilities of test takers as required for nursing programs.

  • Mathematics: Algebra, Averages and Rounding, Estimation and Sequences, Exponents, Fractions and Square Roots, Geometry, Graphs, Measurement, Percents, and Ratios are the important topics covered in the TEAS Mathematics section.

  • Science: General Science topics relevant to the nursing programs are tested in this part of the test.

A total of 170 multiple-choice questions are included in the TEAS testing. The distribution of questions is as follows:

  • 55 from the English and Language usage section
  • 40 from the Reading section
  • 45 from the Mathematics section
  • 30 from the Science section

While learning about what is the TEAS exam, you also need to know about the TEAS test scores. Though it is a competitive test that can change your nursing school prospects, the passing scores are not defined uniformly across different testing institutions. The TEAS scores required for admission into a particular nursing program at a specific college may differ from that of another college. For example, a composite score percentage of 66 or more is required for nursing program admission at the Montgomery College, Maryland (http://cms.montgomerycollege.edu/EDU/Department.aspx?id=37926); however, a composite score of 62 percentage is enough for nursing program admission at the CUESETA College ((http://academic.cuesta.edu/nursing/RN/TEASFAQ.pdf). Though score requirements for admission may differ, it may be noted that institutions always give due significance to higher scores.

How Does the TEAS Measure Your Skills?

While discussing what is the TEAS exam, you may also need to look at how this test measures your skills and abilities. This can make the purpose of testing more lucid and in turn, make your prep efforts more effective.

As mentioned in the earlier paragraphs, the TEAS is a test of academic competence. The test pattern, timings, and questions are specifically designed to cater to the objectives of testing, mainly:

  • Evaluate candidates' abilities and skills in terms of academic competence as required for nursing programs, and make an objective evaluation of their potentials.
  • Analyze the abilities of candidates to spot any shortcomings if any, so that appropriate developmental programs can be recommended to them.

With questions covering all the important areas and skill sets of academic nature (viz, English, Math, and Science), the test can actually measure the candidates' levels and potentials in terms of nursing program contents. Moreover, by letting students know of their academic potentials and shortcomings, the test also provides them with an opportunity for improvement.

To summarize, the TEAS is a test of importance, not only to academic and nursing institutions, but also to each of the nursing school aspirants. You may try and learn more about this test and its different aspects so that you can prepare well for the test and score high in it.

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