Nursing Entrance Tests


When you’re a high school student applying to college, you’re required to take a test like the ACT or the SAT to determine your academic preparedness. Nursing entrance exams exist for the same reason; they provide an objective way for nursing programs to evaluate an applicant’s readiness for school.
Standard Exam Format

There are several types of nursing entrance exams, but many of them share several characteristics.
Timed test often taking around 3.5 hours to complete

Questions in science, life science, general knowledge and vocabulary/language usage

Multiple-choice format
Written and electronic forms available
Types of Entrance Exams
Here are some common nursing entrance exams you’ll encounter when applying to licensed practical nurse (LPN) and/or registered nurse (RN) programs:

  • Test of Essential Academic Skills (TEAS)
  • Evolve HESI Admission Assessment (A2) Exam by Health Education Systems, Inc. Exam (HESI A2)
  • Pre-Admissions Exam by the National League of Nursing (NLN PAX-RN)
  • Aptitude for Practical Nursing Examination by the Psychological Services Bureau (PSB-RN)
  • Nurse Entrance Test (NET)
  • Pre-Nursing Assessment Test by the Center for Nursing Education and Testing (C-NET P-NAT LPN)
  • On Find Nursing Schools, we provide more detailed information on the TEAS and HESI exam. You can also download our free TEAS prep guide.
  • Studying for Nursing Entrance Exams
  • Preparing for a nursing entrance exam usually involves weeks or months of study. Talk to your admissions advisor to get a list of recommended study materials. You can also purchase comprehensive guides and practice tests from the exam’s developer or from Nursing reference books Online stores

Passing Your Entrance Exam

Each entrance exam has its own scoring system, and each nursing school has different score requirements, even if they require the same test. If you don’t achieve the desired score the first time around, you can try again, but there are usually stipulations on the number of times you can take an exam and a minimum time interval between attempts.