TEAS Test For Nursing

What Is The TEAS Test For Nursing?

Getting into a nursing school is a fierce competition. The industry standards remain high over the years to maintain patients’ best interests. Nursing schools widely adopt the TEAS test as a standardized selection process. It covers Maths, Science, Reading, and English.

You will likely be invited to take the TEAS test at whichever school you apply to. Therefore, potential candidates should be well-versed in the structure to give themselves a better chance.

What Is The TEAS Test For Nursing?

The TEAS test stands for the Test of Essential Academic Skills. It is a universal admission test for many health programs. A candidate’s essential reasoning, reading, and comprehension skills are evaluated.

Administrated by ATI, the TEAS test aims to project a candidate’s possible performance at school. Ideally, you can command these skills to high standards. The TEAS test can be done in person or remotely, depending on your preferences or the particular school’s requirements.

In-person tests are either conducted at the school or at an ATI site, whereas remote tests can be done at the candidate’s home.

What Is Included In The TEAS Test?

Doctors Discussing a case

There will be a total of 170 questions in the TEAS test. The time limit is 209 minutes. There are four sections included in the TEAS test.

Each of them assesses different skills and knowledge a nurse would face on the job.

1. Math

The Math section has a time limit of 54 minutes with 38 questions. In the Math test, there will be various questions concerning algebra, measurements, data analysis, and more. The topics covered are roughly the same as the school syllabus through a candidate’s academic journey.

Candidates should not find the materials particularly difficult. The Math test evaluates the numerical reasoning skills that you should have absorbed previously. Graphs and data construction can be more difficult as candidates have to fill in the missing information with some reasoning skills.

2. Science

Consisting of 53 questions, the Science test dissects a candidate’s knowledge of human anatomy. The time limit is 63 minutes. Candidates should possess certain basic and advanced science concepts before getting enrolled in a nursing school.

In the science section, subjects like physics, chemistry, biology, and anatomy are tested. This is considered to be the more difficult part of the entire TEAS test as it covers numerous scientific concepts.

You have to understand how the human body works and interacts with substances, the functionality of each organ, how to determine symptoms that indicate sickness, etc. Candidates need to be knowledgeable of scientific terms.

3. Reading

Candidates must complete 45 questions in 64 minutes. The Reading and English sections can confuse candidates sometimes. The main difference is that the Reading section aims to measure your comprehension skills as a whole while the English test assesses your command of the language.

From the passage given, candidates must analyze its purpose. You need to demonstrate strong summarization skills to distill the main intent of the entire article. Some questions will cover the meaning of a specific phrase or vocabulary.

4. English

With 37 questions in 28 minutes, this is the more intense section of the TEAS test. Candidates have to select the correct use of tenses and vocabulary to complete the assessment. The use of verbs and punctuation is also included.

Overall, the English test ensures candidates can understand the medical documents they will encounter in their daily tasks. A simple misunderstanding of order can have catastrophic results on patients. Therefore, the English test is essential.

How To Pass The TEAS Test?

Doctor typing information on Laptop in Hospital office focus on Stethoscope

1. Take a Trial Run At TestPrep Online

No matter how detailed a study guide is, it will never prepare you enough unless you take a mock test. It is the best way to prepare for the TEAS test. On TestPrep Online, there are 777 practice questions for this compulsory entry exam.

TestPrep Online is not an average test preparation library. All its materials are created by industry experts with distinct knowledge of the TEAS test. After completing the full preparation set, students are confident enough to take the TEAS test anytime.

2. Rank Your Priorities

Understandably, you are better at certain subjects. Ranking your priorities is important so you do not waste time on subjects that do not require much preparation. Take a look at your scores after completing several practice sets and identify your strengths and weaknesses.

In general, if you have been performing exceptionally well in some tests, you do not have to spend as much time studying them. Alternatively, you should practice more in your weakest fields.

3. Breakdown Your Study Schedule

There is no such thing as starting too early. An ideal study schedule should commence at least a month before your test date. Start with your weakest links to strengthen the concepts.

Then, move over to your strong suits to consolidate your existing command of them. Finally, revise your weakest links again to check for improvements and push your short-term memories to the max.

A successful study plan should compromise plenty of breaks. Don’t force your mind to digest several dozens of new ideas each day. You will unlikely learn anything that way. That’s why it’s always to your advantage to start the preparation process as early as possible.

Also, monitor your learning progress so you can see how you have mastered the skills. It makes you aware of how much progress you have made and gives reasonable expectations ahead of the actual TEAS test.

4. Move Along

If you don’t know a question, move on. Wasting time on a question that you don’t know means you have less time for questions that you do know. It is not smart because instead of guessing for answers, you should invest the time in questions you are certain about.

Set a time limit for yourself. If it is not looking good, it’s time to move on so you can at least secure scores for other parts. You can always go back to the highlighted questions in the end if there is time left.

5. Keep a Positive Mindset

It is easy to get stressed when you are studying for an exam that could potentially change your career path. The immense stress is often the cause of failure. Students tend to perform poorly under pressure. Hence, keeping a fresh mind is important.

Sleeping early and taking breaks in between study sessions are great ways to relax your body and mind. Whenever the stress becomes overwhelming, allow yourself to pull away a little. Drowning yourself in the prep tests will not be healthy for the brain when you are overworked.

6. Experiment With Different Methods

There is no single study method that works for all. Everyone has to experiment with their study tactics that yield the best results. Try out different methods and see which one works best.

For example, you can start with the traditional way of memorizing everything in the book. Perhaps your brain can automatically link keywords to the questions and draw appropriate answers from them.

If memorization is not working out, try flashcards. Instead of remembering each chapter word by word, you can visualize the main points. Draw them on flashcards and practice with yourself.

Then, do a practice set again to see if the results improve. Over time, you will figure out a study method that works like a charm for your characteristics and how to score the highest points.

7. Redo The Same Practice Test

Redoing the same practice test is never dull. You may think after getting it wrong the first time, you will remember the correct answer. That’s hardly the case for most students.

It may take you 10 practices on the same set to get the full points. The human brain is forgetful sometimes, especially when you are dealing with 170 questions in a little over two hours.

Take the same practice set again and again. It gives your brain the muscle memory to automatically link certain questions to the correct answer. Then, when you are doing the actual test, you can easily spot the connection between a question and an answer.

It is effectively the best way to embed exam tactics into your brain even if you do not fully understand the academic concepts behind them.

What Is The Passing Score Of The TEAS Test?

A girl is using laptop

The passing score will vary as per nursing school. Each nursing school sets different standards for different programs. On average, you should aim to score at least 10% to 20% of the passing score to secure a place in the following rounds.

For the less demanding programs, the passing score is typically around 55%. Candidates that are not exceptionally skilled in all aspects but have expertise in a single field may consider those programs.

The passing score for highly competitive programs is much higher. Some can go above 90%. Aside from the fierce competition pushing up the passing bar, tougher requirements for the programs is also a factor. Only elites can enroll in these programs because of their demanding nature.

Each year, students can take the TEAS test three times if they fail. Results are either immediately available or within two working days. The condition varies for each school so candidates should follow the instructions given.

Your TEAS test score is valid for three years from the date of the exam. You can use the score to apply within that time frame. However, there is a chance that the score will not be accepted if ATI introduces a new TEAS version. In that case, you will have to retake the test.

Hence, it is advised that you take the test right before applying to a nursing school to make sure your TEAS test score remains valid.

Is The TEAS Test For Nursing Difficult?

The TEAS test is part of the pre-eliminatory process. Candidates with satisfactory resumes can apply for their favorite programs according to their scores. Based on the scores, the best-performing candidates are invited for physical interviews or specific tests as required by the school.

Some nursing schools may combine the TEAS test with other assessments on the same day. It depends on the school’s regulations and system. Candidates should pay attention to the invitation letters to capture all the details.

What Happens After You Pass The TEAS Test?

The real assessment begins after you have gotten your TEAS test result. If the result is satisfactory, you can now go ahead and apply for the nursing program you intend to join. It is important to adjust your choices based on your scores.

Nursing schools will examine your TEAS scores for the program you apply to and see if it is a fit. Once you meet all the requirements, the school will likely invite you for an interview where your skills are assessed by a panel of education experts.

The interview process is intense as you have to present for passion for the subect as well as your future contribution to the field.

Passing the TEAS test does not immediately give you a seat in the academic year. Keep polishing your skills so you can ace other rounds of assessment tests and interviews.

In addition, students should note that in most cases, the location they take the TEAS test does not matter. You are free to apply to other nursing schools even if your TEAS test was administered in another location, given that you meet all the requirements set by the school.

Students should also check for the deadline for the application period as it varies based on the location.


Taking the TEAS test is frightening. It is the first door to stand between you and your dream nursing school. Mastering the answering tactics is the only way to unlock more possibilities for you. You want to score way above average to ensure the best chance at entering any program.

Download your practice sets on TestPrep Online to get all the help you need. Grab the family bundle to work on it with loved ones who are planning the same career path!