How to Score Over 1,000 on the HESI Exit Exam
Seedra Eichelberger was recognized as a “High Achiever” by Chamberlain’s Center for Academic Success for scoring over 1,000 on the HESI Exit Exam, an assessment that helps predict a student’s readiness to sit for the NCLEX.
Eichelberger is a March 2013 graduate of the three-year Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree program at Chamberlain College of Nursing’s Columbus campus. She shares information on her approach and tips below:
How did you approach studying for the HESI Exit Exam?
I studied over break with my classmates. We met up in groups every day and used the HESI books that Chamberlain provides as an outline of what to study. We did a lot of practice questions and then would discuss the rationale together.
I’m a writer and I learn through writing things out. On my own time, I would go and write down concepts that were hard for me, or lab values that you need to know for the HESI Exit Exam. I did a mix of content review and practice questions.
How much time did you spend studying for the exam?
I did the bulk of my studying during the two weeks of my winter break. On average, I devoted about four hours per day to studying over the course of those two weeks. Some days it was more, some days less.
Any tips for the day of the exam?
My best tip is to not overthink and overanalyze a test question. Either you know the information, or you don’t. There’s no point in racking your brain for 20 minutes on one test question. Pick the best answer, keep moving and don’t think about that question anymore because you need to focus on what’s ahead of you and the question that’s in front of you at the present time.
You mentioned in your commencement speech that you came to nursing as a second career. Why become a nurse?
When I graduated college, I worked in the financial field and on the administration side of home health care. In that role, I got to see how nurses went in the home and interacted with patients and I liked it. I did some soul searching and decided to apply to nursing school.
What advice would you have for a new student at Chamberlain?
Chamberlain was absolutely amazing, but it was very challenging. My advice is to get to know your professors, make yourself known to them and ask questions of them. Use the Center for Academic Success, which is a great resource. If you need help at the beginning, ask, and do it early. Don’t wait.
I’m a procrastinator and what I had to learn was that I can’t study the night before. I have to start reading and studying the material as we were going along so it wouldn’t get overwhelming.
What’s next for you?
The NCLEX is up next, I’m just waiting on my testing number. We’re planning on getting back into groups next week and preparing for the NCLEX as we did for the HESI Exit Exam.
After that, I initially want to get on a general Med-Surg floor. Eventually, I want to get into cardio. I definitely want to be an educator for black women with cardiovascular disease.