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Why the TEAS 6 Matters

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ATI TEAS 6 Reading Review

The TEAS has long been known as one of the most important exams for any aspiring nurse within the United States. No nursing student can apply to any school without first completing the TEAS and attaching their scores. Meant to assess how much incoming students know prior to beginning their first-year courses, the test updates on a regular basis to better keep up with frequently evolving curriculum.


In 2016, TEAS VI replaced TEAS V. A Brand new edition of the TEAS that is updated and refined to better match recent developments in the curriculum of today’s nursing schools.


Several elements of the TEAS will stay unchanged. Just like previous incarnations of the exam, the TEAS 6 splits into four distinct sections: English and Language Usage, Reading, Science, and Mathematics. This page will tackle the Reading section of the TEAS 6, covering the differences between its new incarnation compared to the old, what you can expect to find on this newly updated version, and how you can effectively prepare for and approach the exam.


Just how does Reading matter when it comes to your future nursing career? For starters, no nursing career can thrive without the involved employee doing any kind of reading—and you’ll have to juggle a wide variety of reading to do well both in nursing school and in the real world workforce. Throughout your education, you’ll undoubtedly have to read a huge breadth of materials across a multitude of subjects. While on the job, you’ll encounter all sorts of texts, often in the form of medical documentation and correspondence from other medical staff. Being able to properly read and interpret the various materials you’ll come across throughout your nursing career will enable you to better help your patients.


Now you may be wondering exactly what the differences are. Well, we won’t keep you waiting! Read on to learn what you can expect from the new ATI TEAS 6 and how you can prepare for its Reading section as thoroughly as possible.


What’s New?

As it stands, the ATI TEAS 6 Reading section has received a bit of a makeover, with its materials being tightened up to match current entry-level nursing school curriculum. The section as a whole has been expanded, and you’ll be given a longer amount of time for completion. Now you will have just over an hour to finish the entire TEAS VI Reading section—or, more specifically, 64 minutes—rather than the 58 minutes you received on the TEAS V. The amount of questions has also grown from 48 to 53, with six not counting toward your final score. Unscored questions could potentially appear in any of the new Reading section’s new three question categories.


The question categories have also received a revamp. They are now Integration of Knowledge, Craft and Structure, and Key Ideas and Details. Other than these changes, the Reading section of the TEAS remains much the same. It will still be presented in multiple choice format, and you will still be expected to answer questions based upon an array of passages, which will cover a variety of subjects.


To aid you as you study, we will go over each of these question categories in more depth below.


Integration of Knowledge and Ideas

While the name of this question category may sound complicated, its premise is one you’ve become very familiar with throughout your academic career. The Integration of Knowledge and Ideas category deals exclusively with the usage of evidence and related sources in writing. As a result, you will be expected to work with various types of evidence in an equally diverse range of ways. For instance, for some questions you’ll have to analyze information and the assertions connected to them. The former can manifest in any number of ways, from text to graphics. You will also be expected to know the difference between primary and secondary sources. Some questions will want you to examine two resources, identifying both their differences and similarities. For other questions, you’ll have to create inferences for a reading passage, utilizing the text and its arguments to support your own stance. This question category is the shortest on the exam, spanning approximately 11 questions total.


Approaching this question category of the subtest will involve a fair amount of close reading on your part. We encourage you to think about the writer’s stance. Pay special attention to their evidence and how they use it to support their assertions and central ideas, as well as what kinds of inferences you can make based on the information and arguments they’ve given. When you come across reference materials, think about how they present their information and whether they count as secondary or primary.


Craft and Structure

The Craft and Structure category deals with the way writers organize their work and frame their intentions and stances. Answering questions under this category will involve reading a passage, then taking into account and utilizing its content in a meaningful way. You will be expected to be able to tell apart subjective and objective statements; identify a writer’s stance on a particular topic and reasons for crafting that particular work based on the text itself; observe the assortment of ways writers can organize their work; and figure out how a word is defined based on how it’s used within the text. This particular question category will feature across 14 questions.


To tackle questions under this category, you’ll want to pay close attention to language. Rhetoric makes up a large part of how authors craft their work, and knowing how to recognize different ways authors appeal to their audiences and the language that can signal these types of devices will help you to more easily discern the author’s intent behind the work. Take note of how the author presents their stance, how they use language, and how they organize and frame their arguments.


Key Ideas and Details

At 22 questions total, the Key Ideas and Details category is the longest of the Reading section. Skills under this category include properly identifying sequential patterns within a work; simplifying a lengthy or complicated with into a brief synopsis; picking out information from various types of sources upon request; creating inferences based upon texts you’ve read; comprehend and obey directions given to you; and recognize the evidence, central theme, and subject of a written work.


The best way to approach this question category is, again, to read closely. You don’t want to risk missing any important information and wind up making a careless mistake on a question. Go over a passage twice to ensure you’ve absorbed all the text and can easily refer to it as you need for specific questions. Reading closely also applies heavily to instruction-centered questions, as missing even one step can cause you to miss the question entirely.


How Can I Do Well on the Reading Section?

By now you may have noticed a pattern when it comes to approaching each question on the Reading section—reading each passage and question as carefully as you can. This may seem as if it should go without saying, as everyone has to read on a Reading test, but the time limit can easily cause test takers to go faster than they should and risk missing important information. You don’t want this to happen to you. We recommend you read every passage twice to ensure you’ve gathered every piece of information and understand it well. As you read, think about what the author is communicating. What is the central theme of the work? What is the work ultimately about? What is their evidence and how do they make use of it to support their claims? These elements are what you’ll be expected to answer for as you test.


In addition to regular reading passages, you’re also likely to encounter several forms of graphical data, which you will be asked to read and decipher. While these may seem as if they’d be more fitting on the Math or Science subtests, knowing how to read graphical data is an important part of nursing, as you’ll frequently be given charts and similar pieces of data to make sense of when it comes to a patient’s health. Be sure to read these just as closely as you do the rest of the passages.


While we encourage you to be as thorough as possible, we understand you don’t want to be so thorough that you wind up losing out on valuable time and are unable to complete the test. The key to this is to work efficiently. Don’t linger on questions or words you don’t recognize. Use the process of elimination to answer questions more quickly and safely. You can brush up on your test taking skills through the resources published on our site, which include a comprehensive TEAS 6 study guide as well as a TEAS 6 Reading practice test and TEAS 6 Reading flashcards. We know the importance of this exam to your future goals, which is why we strive to offer you every resource possible as you study. You can rely on us for only the best study tools.


Good luck!


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Last updated: 11/21/2017
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