HESI A2 Biology Study Guide
HESI A2 Biology Review
If you’re planning on going to nursing school, you’re probably going to be required to take the HESI A2 Biology exam as part of the application process. There are seven main components of the HESI, and three of them are in science, including the Biology exam. Biology is one of the very foundations of medicine and health care, so it’s imperative for aspiring nurses to have a grasp of the basic principles that underlie the study of all things related to life (which is what bio means) before enrolling in nursing school. Schools use this screening test because it’s very accurate at predicting success in a nursing education. People who do well on the exam should have no trouble learning the advanced biology knowledge they’ll need to know in order to become a nurse, while people who do poorly on the HESI Biology test are very likely to be unable to keep up with a nursing curriculum. To make sure you know what kind of questions you may encounter, check our Mometrix Academy’s free HESI A2 Biology practice questions. This will help you determine topics you may need to study more, and those you are comfortable with.
There are 30 questions on the exam, although five are experimental research questions and won’t count toward your score; they’re being used to develop future versions of the test. These questions aren’t marked as experimental, of course, so as you’re taking the exam you’ll have no way of distinguishing the questions that count from the ones that don’t. In other words, you should simply treat all questions as if they count. Elsevier is the company that owns and develops the HESI A2, and they recommend that schools set a time limit of 25 minutes for Biology. Most schools will, but there is a possibility that your school may establish a different time limit, so be sure to check before exam day. You should be able to find this information on the nursing school’s website.
What’s on the HESI A2 Biology Test?
Biology is a very broad term. The word itself means “the science of life”, and it covers all living organisms and everything that relates to them – their function, structure, growth, origin, reproduction, distribution, etc. However, you won’t need to be an expert in every aspect of biology such as zoology or evolutionary biology to do well on the HESI A2 Biology test. In fact, no one could be an expert in all of biology, because it’s simply impossible for one person to master the many different sub-disciplines of this fascinating field. So don’t think you have to be a science whiz to do well on this test. That’s not the case at all. In fact, you’ll simply need to have the biology knowledge that is taught in all high schools in America. Of course, that’s still quite a bit to know, and you’ll definitely want to review and test yourself before taking the actual test. Here are some of the things you’ll need to know about for the HESI A2 exam on biology:
Cells – cell theory (all living things are composed of one or more cells, cells are the fundamental building block of all life, all cells come from pre-existing living cells), cell structure, cell composition, macromolecules, organelles, how cells connect and form tissue, cell walls, prokaryotes, multinucleated cells, mitochondria, DNA, RNA, mitosis, meiosis, cellular respiration, glycolysis, the citric acid cycle, electron transport, cytoplasm, binary fission, cell membrane, cell wall, centrioles, chromosomes, flagella, cilia, lysosomes, peroxisomes, ribosomes, Golgi apparatus, endoplasmic reticulum, etc.
Photosynthesis – a plant turns sunlight into energy it can use by storing it as carbohydrate molecules, most comes from red and blue wavelengths, chloroplasts, stroma, the four types of chlorophyll, the roles of oxygen and carbon dioxide, the Calvin Cycle, light dependent reaction, light independent reaction, etc.
As you can see, the HESI A2 is heavily focused around cells and photosynthesis, but these are not the only topics. Basics such as the importance of water and oxygen to all of life, molecules and their structures, the differences between mammals and other animals, etc., are also important. You’ll want to review thoroughly before taking the HESI Biology exam, especially if you struggled with high school biology courses. Take advantage of the free HESI A2 Biology videos at the top of this page to help you get up to speed and be prepared to make an excellent score on this exam.