A 2023 Study Guide for the HESI A2 Math Test: with Examples
Updated November 22, 2023
The HESI A2 Math Test is part of the assessment process for getting into a nursing program or nursing school in the USA.
The acronym HESI stands for Health Education Systems Including Admission Assessment, and the math section is a part of a longer computerized multiple-choice test that is all about academic readiness for the rigors of a nursing program.
The HESI A2 has eight main sections that form the assessment, but most schools will only use five to six sections, depending on the program.
The sections are as follows:
- Reading Comprehension
- Anatomy and Physiology
In each section, there are a certain number of questions that are scored and five extra questions which are not scored; these are pilot questions that are being assessed for use in future tests.
In the Mathematics, Reading Comprehension, Vocabulary and Grammar sections, there are 50 marked questions and five unmarked questions. You’ll have 50 minutes to complete these.
The Biology, Chemistry, Anatomy and Physiology and Physics sections have 25 marked questions with five unmarked questions, with a 25-minute time limit.
The HESI A2 assessment usually takes place on campus, so you will have to attend a test center to complete it.
You will be given everything you need to complete the assessment before you get started, including scratch paper and access to an on-screen calculator.
The mathematics section of the assessment is all about basic math skills at the level you will have achieved upon leaving high school.
These basic skills include:
- Addition and subtraction
- Multiplication and division of whole numbers
- Algebra and balancing equations
- Decimals: conversion to fractions, multiplication and division, and placement
- Fractions: multiplying and dividing, simplification and conversion
- Ratios and proportion
- Military time (the 24-hour clock)
- Measures and conversions (imperial and metric)
- Word problems
- Roman numerals
The HESI A2 Math Test is likely to be one of the sections you will have to complete as part of your application to a nursing program, as math skills are essential for a number of things, including dosing medication and taking vital measurements.
The math section of the HESI 2 lasts 50 minutes, and you will have to answer 55 questions in total.
Five of these questions are unmarked and not part of the test, but you won’t know which ones – these are pilot questions that are being evaluated for their suitability to be in future assessments.
This means that you will have less than one minute to answer all the questions in the assessment.
Every question has multiple-choice options as answers, and there are opportunities to go back and check your answers if you need to at the end.
1. Complete this calculation: 1,011 – 987.
2. What is 25% of 90?
3. Add 2.25 and 6.7
4. Complete this sum: 4/6 x 6/8
5. Find the value of y in this proportion: 5:12::y:36.
If you want 12-month access to all the practice resources for this test, our partner TestPrep-Online.com offers a Family Membership.
Family Membership gives you access to all the TestPrep-Online resources for the next 12 months. You will also get two separate accounts, which can be very helpful if you have two children preparing for their tests.
How to Prepare for the HESI A2 Math Test (HESI A2 Math Study Guide)
A HESI Math Test can be daunting, and even though the assessment is on basic math skills, the pressure of the test environment can force you into mistakes.
A math HESI A2 practice test – both online and on paper – will get you familiar with taking the test. You will know the structure and layout of the assessment, as well as the type of questions that you will face.
When taking a HESI math practice test with answers, you can use the results to help you focus your revision.
For example, if you notice that your performance on percentage-related questions is weaker than elsewhere, you can work on practicing solving percentage questions.
Before you start revising your math knowledge from high school, take a practice test so that you can use your revision time wisely – and take another one later so you can witness your improvement for an extra confidence boost.
When taken as a complete test, the three-plus hours of the HESI A2 assessment can feel like a lifetime, but in reality, you will have less than a minute to answer each question, and that makes it a real challenge if you get stuck on something.
With this in mind, you will want to practice your timing. Answering HESI Math Test questions quickly and accurately is essential for good performance in the HESI A2 Math Test, and you can give yourself the best chance for success by finding solving strategies for different types of questions.
These strategies might be as simple as refreshing your memory on how to multiply fractions or using a calculator to solve percentage problems.
Remember that in the test, you will be able to go back to questions that you are unsure of at the end if you have time.
You can mark questions with a button on the screen to remind yourself of the ones that need checking and skip ahead to the questions that you find easier so that you aren’t wasting time.
When you are taking the practice tests, make sure that you use a timer, preferably on screen, so that you are aware of time passing.
You already know the caliber of math questions that you are going to face, so you’ve got an idea of what you need to revise.
Basic math skills are things that you might use in everyday life, whether it is calculating sales tax or working out the sale price of something in a shop, converting kilograms to pounds when baking a cake, or just working out how much pie to serve the family.
These are all things that you will have learned and revisited in school, and if there is anything that you need some more help with, there are plenty of resources available online to help – even those that are aimed at teenagers will be excellent resources because they will be explained in the simplest terms.
You will probably already know what your weaknesses are, and with the information from the practice tests to hand, you can structure your own revision schedule that considers what you need to learn yourself.
When you are gearing up for any sort of assessment, nerves can be an important factor – but you need to get sleep as this can make such a difference in your performance.
Numerous studies have found that not getting the right amount of sleep can be hugely detrimental to cognitive function.
In the run-up to the test, you want to be aiming for 6-8 hours of sleep a night so that your brain can function at its absolute best.
As much as adequate rest is needed for performance, nutrition and hydration should not be ignored. Nerves might make you feel like eating is impossible, but your brain needs fuel to perform well – and that means focusing on healthy and balanced meals.
You’ll want to try and eat a nutritious breakfast at the very least on test day and consider bringing some healthy snacks to top up with should you need them.
Being hungry will be a distraction and could make it harder for you to focus.
Hydration is also key to success, and a few sips of water can help give you a moment to relax and get focused before you start the assessment, as well as help you stay lubricated while you are answering the questions.
In the real assessment, you will be in a room with a proctor and will not be allowed to bring anything into the room with you. You’ll be provided with some scratch paper and a pen or pencil.
This lack of possible distractions will help you focus on the assessment, and it is something that you want to try and replicate while you are practicing to give the best impression of what the test will be like.
Turn your phone off or, at the very least, on silent, and make sure any notifications on your PC or laptop are turned off too.
Make sure that anyone you live with knows that you are taking a practice test so that they do not disturb you either.
This is important at home, of course, but it is even more important in the test center.
The test proctor will be on hand to help you if you run into a technical issue when you are taking the test, but before you get started, you will want to be sure that you can use the keyboard, the mouse is responsive, and you can see the screen well.
You will want to adjust your seat, if possible, to make sure that you are comfortable – sitting still for more than three hours in a poor position is not ideal.
The HESI A2 Math Test is part of a longer assessment that is used to evaluate candidates on their academic readiness to take on a nursing program at a school.
The Math portion of the test is designed to assess basic math skills that are necessary for nurses to have.
The HESI A2 Math Test asks questions on basic math concepts, things that you will have learned in high school.
This includes things like:
- Basic operations (addition, subtraction, multiplication and division)
- Ratios and proportions
- Measures and conversion
- Military time
- Roman numerals
- Word problems
The math section of the HESI A2 test has a 50-minute time limit. There are 50 questions to answer in this section, as well as five extra unmarked questions that are being evaluated for inclusion in later versions of the assessment.
The content of the HESI A2 Math Test is based on high school math that you should already know, but the combination of examination pressure and a tight time limit will make the test seem more challenging.
You will need to work quickly and accurately to get the highest marks because there is less than a minute allowed per question.
There are 55 questions in total on the HESI A2 Math Test. 50 of these questions are marked and count towards your final score, while five are pilot questions under assessment to be included in future versions of the HESI A2 test.
There are lots of resources available online to help you prepare for the HESI A2 Math Test, as well as the other sections on the HESI A2.
A great resource is TestPrepOnline, which includes a guide to the test, practice assessments, and revision resources that you will find very useful when you are preparing.
The HESI A2 Math Test is timed, along with the other sections of the HESI A2 test. The Math section, in particular, has a 50-minute time limit, in which time you will have to answer 55 questions – which means that you need to spend less than a minute on each question.
The HESI A2 Math Test is designed to assess potential candidates for a nursing position for their readiness to take on the academic rigors of a nursing course.
Math is an important part of nursing, from recording vital measurements to ensuring the correct dosage of medication.
The basic math that is assessed in the HESI A2 includes the knowledge that a nurse needs to have to be successful.
If you do not reach the required score percentage to be considered for a place in the nursing program that you have applied for, or you have not registered in a program within the specified amount of time, you can retake the HESI A2 Math Test as part of the wider test or as a module by itself.
Retakes are available up to six times a year, twice within the same eligibility period.
You can get practice questions for the HESI A2 Math Test online. We suggest using the resources at TestPrepOnline because there are a wealth of different resources, including practice questions available there, which is great for those who want extra preparation and revision material.
You can get a useful study guide for the HESI A2 Math Test at TestPrepOnline, and there are usually information-filled handouts about the assessments you will face when you apply for a nursing program which will suggest some places for you to get further information too. Preparation is key to a good performance.
If you are considering a nursing career, you are likely to have to take the HESI A2 as part of the application process for the program or school.
While the test is more about your suitability for the academic side of becoming a nurse rather than an in-depth assessment of your current level of knowledge, you will still want to perform well.
Nursing programs are often oversubscribed and really competitive, so the more preparation you can do, the better your score will be – and when it comes to the math section, this is really important because it is often where people feel less confident in their skills.
With preparation and practice, you can achieve the scores you need in the HESI A2 Math section and earn that place in the nursing program.