What is the difference between HESI VS TEAS?

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January 1, 2022

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HESI vs TEAS are becoming the two most popular exams for students pursuing nursing-associated programs. Despite having the same purpose of assessing medical ability and assisting institutes in screening candidates, these two exams still have certain differences. Follow the following article to find out what is the difference between TEAS test vs HESI.

The differences between the content of HESI vs TEAS



HESI stands for “Health Education Systems, Inc,”. This is a test for nursing, medical, surgical, or other healthcare-related professions. In general, HESI is a test of the ability of candidates who want to apply to professional medical schools. Thus, HESI can comprehensively assess medical competence and allow for a chart of progress in the learning process.

Otherwise, The ATI TEAS, or Test of Essential Academic Skills, was designed to measure a student’s skills in the areas of English and Language Usage, Mathematics, Science, and Reading. TEAS offers the College an additional standardized assessment tool to consider applicants’ skill levels for entering the nursing-related education programs. The ATI TEAS test is a required test for students applying to nursing, respiratory or occupational therapy schools. In general, candidates wishing to take this exam need to fulfill the basic biology education requirements.

HESI A2 vs TEAS test are currently the two most popular tests for all students in the nursing field. The main difference between HESI exam and TEAS is the content of each test. 

The HESI exam is a combination of 7 sections:

  • Reading Comprehension

The Reading Comprehension test consists of a total of 47 questions with the task of assessing the candidate’s ability to analyze situations. Each question provides an example of different work environments and requires the candidates to draw accurate conclusions from the provided content.

  • Vocabulary

The Vocabulary section is a 50-question test designed around the field of human healthcare. The candidate’s responsibility is to create suitable sentence structures based on existing vocabulary, including both simple and complex ones.

  • Grammar

The Grammar section focuses on voice assessment and analysis as well as identifying grammatical errors used in the healthcare industry.

  • Standard Math Skills

The Standard Math Skills Test is a test designed with 50 questions about human health care. In this section of the test, candidates are asked to demonstrate their mathematical ability through calculations, using numbers, or evaluating specific measurements.

  • Biology

The Biology section requires candidates to answer questions about the structure of cells, the structure of the human body, the characteristics of biological molecules as well as the biological cycle of some species. The test lasts for 25 minutes with 25 different questions.

  • Chemistry

Like the Biology section, The chemistry section is also designed with 25 questions. In this section, candidates need to answer questions related to the properties of chemicals, chemical equations as well as the influence of chemistry on modern medicine.

  • Anatomy and Physiology

In the Anatomy and Physiology section, the questions are designed to focus on the biology and structure of the human body. Candidates will have 25 related questions.

  • General Profiling and Learning Style

This is considered the most special part of the exam compared to other exams. Based on the candidate’s personality characteristics, the section will ask appropriate questions to help determine the right learning method for you.

  • Critical Thinking

For those working in the medical industry, Critical Thinking is a necessary and important skill in behavior. That is why this section is included in the HESI test. Not only does the test help assess your thinking in different situations, the test also helps analyze controversial data in a different way.

Note: Remember, the Learning Style and General Profiling test is optional, depending on the program you are applying for. Some schools require this information to help their students clearly navigate their learning styles; while others do not require it. Therefore, before registering for the exam, you can consult the requirements of the school you want to apply to to avoid the risk of having to retake the test.

You can see that main difference between HESI vs TEAS is the test sections since the ATI TEAS test just combines 4 sections: Reading, Mathematics, Language Usage, and Science.

  • Reading Section

Candidates will have 64 minutes to answer 53 Reading related questions. The content of the text revolves around the assessment of contexts, reading comprehension, and context to assess reading skills in a medical environment.

  • Mathematics Section

In the Mathematics Section, candidates need to answer a total of 36 questions in 54 minutes. The topic is given a focus on addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, using numbers, evaluation specific measurements, and non-numeric fractions.

  • Science Section

This is an important section designed with 53 questions in 63 minutes. In this part of the exam, the candidate’s task is to answer questions about anatomy, the structure of cells, the structure of the human body, the characteristics of biological molecules as well as the biological cycle of some species. In addition, knowledge and skills related to genetics and scientific reasoning are also required to answer the questions correctly.

  • English and Language usage

Within 28 minutes, candidates need to answer 28 questions about using English in a medical environment. Various topics revolve around the use of vocabulary, grammar, and idioms when communicating and negotiating with patients/colleagues.

Remember, in the TEAS test, all sections are required. You are not allowed to select the test section.

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Other Differences between HESI vs TEAS

  • Length of test

The HESI exam provides candidates with a total of 350 questions (including 7 sections) within 4 hours. Meanwhile, the TEAS exam consists of only about 170 questions and takes only 3.5 hours to complete the test.

  • Cost of testing

There will be a certain difference between the cost of registering for the TEAS and HESI exams. The HESI exam costs between $40 and $100 depending on the test you’re applying for. Meanwhile, the TEAS test cost has a flat price of $70.

Is the HESI or TEAS harder?



In general, each test has different features and difficulty levels, depending on your abilities and strengths/weaknesses.

However, the TEAS will provide a huge background knowledge that you have acquired through studying procedures in school. Most of the questions will cover basic aspects, and the topics seem to be less specific. Therefore, the TEAS test is also used to apply to non-medical study programs.

On the other hand, the HESI exam will provide a wealth of specialized knowledge in a health-related field. Because the number of questions is more specific, the HESI test is considered to require high medical ability and the deep study of medical-related knowledge.

Is Therefore, the HESI test is considered to be more difficult than the TEAS test. However, it does not mean that it is easy to get a good score in the TEAS exam. Any exam requires a solid amount of specialized knowledge as well as careful preparation before the exam.


Above is the basic information about HESI vs TEAS as well as the difference between these two exams. We hope that you will choose the exam that suits your ability and achieve remarkable results.

For practice questions, visit our homepage to take the free and full TEAS practice test pack with more than 500 questions for all TEAS subtests.

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