Testing Center

Health Occupations Aptitude Examination (HOAE)

The HOAE is an admission examination offered by Psychological Services Bureau, Inc. (PSB). The examination is normed on applicants for admission to all of the various health care career choices and can predict an individual’s readiness and capability for successful completion of the educational program designed to prepare qualified health care personnel. PSB tests measure the abilities, skills, knowledge, and attitudes vital to successful performance in the health education programs.

HOAE Test Content

The HOAE is comprised of five separate tests that measure abilities, skills, knowledge, and attitudes important for success in health care programs and careers.

Part I – Academic Aptitude (40 minutes) Academic aptitude is measured by the total of three sub-tests. It can be though of as a type of ability to learn. The three sub-tests are:

  1. Verbal – The Verbal aspect consists of vocabulary-related test questions. Verbal skills have been shown to be highly related to academic success.
  2. Arithmetic – The Arithmetic aspect consists of content of numerical items to which all eight grade students have been exposed. It involves skill with arithmetical concepts along with computational speed.
  3. Nonverbal – The Nonverbal aspect consists of items dealing with comprehension of form relationships. It measures the ability to reason out differences in pictured objects, to deal with concrete materials through visualization, and to manipulate or work through items mentally.

Part II – Spelling (15 minutes) The Spelling test measures spelling ability, which is a tool essential to written expression and communication.

Part III – Reading Comprehension (35 minutes) The Reading Comprehension test measures ability to understand direct statements, interpret written content, see authors intent, observe organization of ideas, and to extract information from written material; thus, to read and comprehend what is read.

Part IV – Information in the Natural Sciences (25 minutes) The Information in the Natural Sciences test measures accumulation of information in biology, chemistry, health, safety, etc., at a fundamental level.

Part V – Vocational Adjustment Index (15 minutes) The Vocational Adjustment Index identifies feelings, attitudes, opinions, and other personality characteristics and behavior traits. Some behaviors and characteristics, which may be quite acceptable in many situations, may not be those most desirable for the prospective healthcare professional, either as a student or as a practitioner.

HOAE Preparation

  • Study guides are available for viewing in the Learning Resource Center (LRC) on North, South, and NC Research Campuses. Study guides may also be purchased in the Rowan-Cabarrus Community College Bookstores or through other book sellers.
  • Complete the HOAE Sample Questions available on the Test Resources page of the PSB website.
  • The Tutoring Centers on the North and South Campuses will be able to assist students who need assistance in specific areas. An appointment is not required. Remember to bring your study guide(s) with you to the Tutoring Center, if possible.

General Test-Taking Strategies for the HOAE

  • Be physically and mentally prepared for the exam. Be well-rested and remember to eat prior to your appointment. Dress comfortably.
  • Relax – if you feel anxious or worried, your scores will be impacted. Try deep breathing techniques if you become anxious during the examination.
  • Take care of any personal needs before the testing begins, so you can focus on performing well.
  • Be positive. Your attitude is important!

Specific Strategies for the HOAE from PSB

  • Listen carefully to the oral directions that are given to you by the Testing Center staff.
  • Read the General Instructions carefully and follow them exactly.  Instructions for each part must be read and interpreted within given time limits.
  • Read the questions carefully.  Work rapidly to answer as many questions as possible; however, do not rush through the test questions.
  • Test questions are arranged in approximate order of difficulty, so do not waste time puzzling over a difficult question. Some earlier questions may be more difficult for you than later ones.
  • When you have finished the easier questions, if there is time left, go back to any question you may have skipped in that part of the examination.
  • Indiscriminate guessing does not pay off. An educated, reasoned guess is worthwhile; however, random guessing is not recommended.
  • Each correct answer receives one point. Incorrect or blank answers do not receive any points.
  • For more test-taking strategies from PSB, please visit the Test Resources page of the PSB website.

Cost for Taking the HOAE

The current cost is $30.00. This fee is non-refundable, so please plan your payment accordingly.

Payment Options

  • Navigation Station – You can pay the $30.00 test fee with cash, credit/debit card, check, or money order at either the North or South Campus Navigation Station. You will receive a receipt for your payment that is to be shown to the Testing Center staff prior to test administration. If you plan to pay the day of your appointment, please arrive at least 20 minutes prior to your appointment, to ensure you are not late to the testing session as a result of making a payment. Candidates will not be admitted to the testing session if they are late.  There is no exception to this due to the test administration procedures.
  • If you are scheduled for a Saturday appointment, please contact Kathy Hall (kathy.hall@rccc.edu, 704-216-3468) for information about alternative payment methods. Cashiers are not available on Saturdays.

Where will I test?

The HOAE is administered at both North and South Campuses.  Testing Center locations are included in your appointment confirmation email(s).  

What do I need to bring with me for my testing appointment?

You will need a valid photo ID (i.e. driver’s license, passport, state ID card, military ID, or RCCC student ID) and your payment receipt to be admitted to the testing session.

Scheduling Your HOAE

You may schedule your appointment online anytime or call us if you have questions.  If you are a student attending another institution and need to take the HOAE, then you will need to reach out to that institution to set up an approved proctoring appointment for the HOAE.