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BSN student success, HESI Exit Exam success, NCLEX-RN pass rates, Predictive factors



  1. Moore, Leslie C. PhD, RN, CNE, MBA
  2. Goldsberry, Jennifer DNP, FNP-BC, CNE, RN
  3. Fowler, Catherine DHS, RN, CNE
  4. Handwerker, Sarah EdD, RN, OCN, CNE


First-time success rate on the NCLEX-RN examination has significant implications for BSN students, faculty, and schools of nursing. Many nursing programs utilize standardized examinations such as the HESI Exit Exam to quantify student success on knowledge of nursing concepts and to prepare students for success on the NCLEX-RN. Nursing faculty must be able to identify predictors of student success early in the nursing program in order to offer appropriate support and remediation. The purpose of this retrospective, correlational study was to determine predictive variables of BSN student success on the HESI Exit Exam in a southeastern university. Students who reported higher test anxiety scored significantly lower on the HESI Exit Exam. Higher medical-surgical I HESI examination scores, higher medical-surgical II HESI examination scores, higher obstetrics HESI examination scores, and higher final grade point average were significant predictors of students' HESI Exit Exam scores and accounted for 39% of the variance in the scores. Results from this study suggest implementing remediation based on HESI Specialty Exam scores and interventions aimed at reducing test anxiety.