Methods: A prospective correlative analysis was employed for this study, which compared the academic HESI grades of 115 male junior level students who were initially identified as highly-qualified and who participated in a structured clinical reasoning seminar. These students were also advised of their nursing schools’ nursing programs, their curriculum vitae, their faculty records, and a summary of career experiences. Out of the group, ten (out of twenty-one) passed the final exam, demonstrating that this method works! The study did not look at why these nursing schools were able to better assess a potential candidate’s nursing courses than others could. It does, however, highlight how important it is to carefully review HESI exam scores before you submit your application. Let me explain.
Before you apply for admission to an accredited nursing program, the school will request that you fax over a set of HESI score reports. This is done in order to make sure that you are meeting the minimum academic requirements. In addition to submitting your report, you must also sign a release form given by the school.
If you pass the preliminary exam, you will be mailed in your HESI results. You will then have twenty-four hours to answer the questionnaires from the school about your prior training, certification, and work experience. You can only return to the HESI exam site twenty-four hours after the completion of the exam. This is to give the nursing school time to check your best exam scores to verify if you met all of the requirements and if you should be granted enrollment into the program.
When you apply to a specific school to get into their associate degree nursing program, they will ask you to submit the official paperwork proving your HESI exam scores. They will then compare your “raw” HESI exam scores with the “convergent validity” formula used to determine the “raw” HESI score. The “convergent validity” formula is a mathematical equation that compares the arithmetic mean of all of your previous standardized test scores. This formula factors in prior experience, as well as current knowledge and skills. Once the HESI school has determined the raw score, they compare it with the “convergent validity” formula and determines the appropriate scoring for your individual needs.
The NCL externship exam, or “HESI exit exam,” is used to see how well the student transferred these previously measured qualities and learned new ones during the clinical rotations. In many cases, students who take the exam typically have a better clinical and nursing program experience than those who do not. By taking the exam, you are showing your potential school that you can quickly learn new nursing skills and adapt to the ever changing environment of the clinical practice. With this in mind, the higher your “nose score,” the more likely you will pass the exam and earn the entry into the nursing program. As a result, the school may consider giving you a better chance to earn the nursing program admission.
However, as mentioned before, there is a drawback to the whole process. The reliability of the HESI exam is often called into question because it depends on the distribution of exam grades across campus, which is not a perfect measure of the quality of the classes taught by the teachers. In addition, the reliance on aggregates, such as the Average Student Review (ASR) or National Center for Education Statistics (NCEs) statistics, makes it difficult to determine which qualities are most important in a clinical practice. When instructors are asked if a particular course’s value lies in its teaching effectiveness or its suitability for the clinical environment, it is difficult to know which metrics to use. If you are looking for a dependable study tool, then you should look towards the HESI exams.
HESI exam exams are usually taken in two parts: a classical test theory and an item analysis. A classical test theory is based on previous exam scores and prior research findings. The item analysis uses HESI 2021 guidelines for evaluating each concept taught in the clinical setting. Items are analyzed using descriptive analysis, rank ordering, and multiple regression. These strategies allow instructors to provide a clear understanding of the concepts presented in the clinical setting.