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Eleven Plus Schools Entrance and Consultancy

We provide a comprehensive service for eleven plus (11+) schools placement and entrance exam preparation including tailored services in Maths, English (Comprehension), Verbal & Non-Verbal Reasoning subsets. We can also assist with the application procedure as well as school open days and interview advice. An important part of the procedure is not only matching the child to a school where they will thrive academically but moreover to place them where the pupil will be happy and flourish.

 

What does the 11+ mean?

A selective entrance examination process for students leaving Primary education and entering Secondary schooling, the 11+ is used to determine the learners who are strongest academically.  Used by private schools and state-funded grammar schools, the exam process begins in Primary school, either at the end of Year 5 or at the beginning of Year 6. The 11+ examination process is used to determine which children are academically strongest, enabling them to progress into state-funded grammar schools or some selective private schools.

The 11+ is currently used in counties that have state-funded grammar schools including Berkshire, Bexley, Birmingham, Buckinghamshire, Cumbria, Devon, Dorset, Essex, Gloucestershire, Hertfordshire, Kent, Lancashire, Lincolnshire, Medway, Shropshire, Trafford, Wiltshire, Walsall, Warwickshire, Wirral, Wolverhampton and Yorkshire.

Though the 11+ exam is no longer a compulsory test, it continues to be used in areas with grammar schools and selective independent schools, with parents interested in electing their children to enable them the opportunity to grow and flourish; both academically and as individuals. It is important to remember that there are always less places available at grammar schools than students applying for them, making competition rife. Ensuring that your child is effectively prepared to enter their 11+ exam is imperative in meaning they have a chance at gaining a place at the selected school of your choice.

 

What subjects will my child have examinations on?

The four main subjects covered in the 11+ are English, Mathematics, Verbal Reasoning and Non-Verbal Reasoning. The content for English and maths typically follows the National Curriculum, whereas Verbal and Non-Verbal Reasoning are not explicitly taught in state primary school’s curricula.

The structure and content of the 11+ examination process is determined by the area of the country that you reside in, but it will follow a general combination of the four core subjects. The two formats of the 11+ examination papers are standard format and multiple-choice format.

Standard format involves students recording their answers directly onto the examination test papers.

Multiple-choice format involves students recording their answers onto the examination test papers, where they are then marked in an answer booklet, separate from the test paper.

The 11+ examination papers are timed, averaging between 45 and 60 minutes in duration. This makes practicing in timed conditions with 11+ mock test papers an extremely beneficial process, enabling your children to see what they are able to accomplish in the permitted time, developing their time management with practice.

 

What skills will my child be tested on?

For your child to be successful in the 11+ examination process they must have strengths in a breadth of areas. For children participating with GL’s exams mathematics, spelling, vocabulary and logic will all be tested as important skills to have strengths within. For children participating in CEM’s exams mathematics, spelling, vocabulary, comprehension and English are the primary skills that they will be tested on. CEM is designed as a response to the arguable predictability of GL’s exams, meaning success is dependent on a breadth of knowledge, specifically concerning your child having a wide-ranging vocabulary.

 

Examination boards:

The 11+ has two main examination boards, GL Assessment (previously NFER) and CEM (Durham University). The location of your grammar school will usually determine the selected exam board for your child’s exams. The exam board may vary in selected areas of the country, making it important to research your selected grammar school first to determine what board to prepare for. GL administer the majority of the 11+ exams throughout grammar schools across the UK. CEM (Centre for Evaluation & Monitoring) was created as a response to concerns from a selection of grammar schools that claimed the 11+ examinations had become too predictable, no longer providing an accurate distinction between learners who were academically stronger and those who had been taught with the sole outcome of performing well under test conditions.

  • Counties where GL Assessment is used include Dorset, Kent, Lancashire & Cumbria, Lincolnshire, Medway, Northern Ireland, Wiltshire.
  • Counties where CEM is used include DorsetBerkshire, Bexley, Birmingham, Buckinghamshire, Devon, Gloucestershire, Shropshire, Walsall, Warwickshire, Wirral, Wolverhampton.
  • Counties where GL and CEM are used include Devon, Essex, Hertfordshire, Trafford, Yorkshire.

 

What is the pass mark?

Though the passing mark varies yearly, it sits approximately at 80% but can rise as high as 90% in selected schools. The reason the rate is so high is due to the number of applicants for a limited amount of positions. This means that achieving the highest marks results in a place offering, making revision and practice of the core elements of the tests in your child’s study periods imperative. Adopting a structured approach to revision alongside practicing using past papers will enable your child to create a routine that encourages knowledge retention and a development of skills. Identifying weaknesses in knowledge or skill will enable you to tailor your revision to the needs of your child, ensuring that they have a breadth of knowledge and skills. Marks are determined through a standardisation process to ensure that all students are treated equally, with equal opportunity to pass.

 

How do I prepare my child for the 11+ exam?

Maintaining a revision schedule that enables your child to practice and develop their knowledge of a well-rounded selection of subjects is important in enabling them to be distinguished from other children participating in the 11+ examination process. The 11+ exam is as much concerned with the areas where your child naturally exceeds, making a breadth of skills desirable. Reading for pleasure and encouraging habits that enable a development of skills engages your child with learning that can be self-directed at times. Developing mathematical skills alongside this gives your child the opportunity to flourish in both of the key elements of the exam process.

By researching what examination board your child will be taking their exams with you can use past papers in your child’s revision practice, encouraging them to participate in mock-tests, under time restrictions to familiarise them with the process. Documenting new words as they arise in conversations or in reading promotes retention of knowledge, creating a resource that your child can refer to as they continue to learn new words and use new vocabulary; this can be supported by communicating with your child using a rich vocabulary, encouraging your child to ask questions when they do not understand a word. By practicing synonyms, you can encourage your child to develop their use of words in conversations and in writing.

It is useful to keep in mind that though GL assessment examined tests enable you to effectively refer to past papers, CEM examined tests requires a greater emphasis on self-led vocabulary and mathematic knowledge development, with the test often being less predictable that GL’s.

 

Will my child need to prepare for an interview?

Upon a successful mark on their 11+ examination, children applying to a grammar school will generally speaking not be required to go through a formal interview process. Though a small selection of grammar schools may choose to engage their prospective pupils in interviews, this process is generally reserved for children applying for private schools. 

 

Is the 11+ relevant to my child?

The 11+ examination process is designed to identify those children who are the strongest academically, providing an opportunity for those who perform well to enter grammar schools and selected independent schools. This means it is important to consider whether this route is an appropriate and relevant pathway for your child. It is useful to reflect on your child’s experience of schooling, do they have a record of high grades, are they typically above average across the core subjects (English and maths specifically), has your child’s teacher communicated that the 11+ is a suitable route for your child? By looking at your child’s results from their SATs/CATs/PIEs/PIMs, you can more easily identify whether the 11+ meets your child’s strengths, appropriating whether the exams will be a useful challenge or not. Ultimately, it is important to consider the right pathway for your child’s academic and individual growth.

If you would like to an 11 Plus (11+) tutor arrange schools entrance consultancy or enquire about our schools placement service in England as well as schools entrance tests please call us on Tel: +44 (0) 207 665 6606 or you can send us an email via our contact form.

 

Useful resources:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/national-curriculum-assessments-practice-materials

https://www.gov.uk/find-local-council

https://www.bond11plus.co.uk/about-11-plus

https://home.oxfordowl.co.uk/at-school/primary-school-assessment-tests/

https://www.elevenplusexams.co.uk

https://11pluslondon.co.uk

https://www.goodschoolsguide.co.uk/curricula-and-exams/understanding-the-11

https://www.11plusguide.com/11-plus-exam-preparation/

https://schoolentranceexam.com/how-to-pass-and-smash-the-11-plus-exam/

https://www.explorelearning.co.uk/blog/common-misconceptions-11-plus/

https://www.theschoolrun.com/beginners-guide-11

https://testteach.co.uk/online/

https://easya.io/blog/grammar-schools-11-plus-commonly-asked-questions

https://gogrammarschool.com/what-is-the-pass-mark-for-11-plus/

https://www.headstart11plus.co.uk/mock-exams

https://www.schoolentrancetests.com/11-plus-independent-school-papers/

https://exampapersplus.co.uk/papers/eleven-plus/

https://www.cgpbooks.co.uk/info/preparing-for-the-11-plus-with-cgp/free-11-plus-practice-tests

https://11plusexampapers.co.uk/index.html

https://www.twinkl.co.uk/teaching-wiki/11-plus-exam

https://www.sats-papers.co.uk/11-plus-papers/

https://www.ksol.co.uk/contents/11-Information/What-is-the-11-plus

https://www.goodschoolsguide.co.uk/choosing-a-school/grammar-schools/admissions

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