An Overview Of The 11 Plus Exam
The 11 plus exam is an assessment given to a child during their final year of their primary education in order to access a place at grammar school. Grammar schools use the test to pick the top achieving children who are deemed to have the potential to perform well within this demanding environment.
Grammar schools used to be compulsory throughout the UK, but since 1970, the 11 plus exam was only required in regions that still chose to operate grammar schools.
A great deal of private schools, independent schools, foundation schools and local authorities are still admitting students based on the result of the test. It is still recognised extensively in Buckinghamshire.
What Is The Format Of The Bucks 11+?
Currently the examination body for the Buckinghamshire Secondary Transfer Test (the 11+) is GL Assessment and the test comprises of English and Numerical Reasoning, as well as Verbal and Non-Verbal Reasoning.
Each subject area holds a weighting of 25% of a student’s overall raw score.
The test is split across two papers (English and Verbal Reasoning, followed by Maths and Non-Verbal Reasoning). The papers are both multiple-choice format.
What is Verbal and Non-Verbal Reasoning?
The Verbal Reasoning included in the 11 plus exam will compel your child to examine texts, word structure, sequencing events, and problem-solving skills amongst others. In this part, your child is required to have a profound understanding of English grammar and an extensive vocabulary.
The Non-Verbal assessment will prompt your child to analyse diagrams and images, finding a solution based on the complex patterns shown.
Non-Verbal Reasoning tests your child’s logic, thought process, and the ability to solve problems that have no numerical or written reasoning. It is a part of the eleven plus exam which does not require a high precision and eloquence on the written language.
Passing The 11 Plus Exam
The 11 plus exam is highly competitive with there only being a set number of places within the grammar schools available. Passing the exam is not a guarantee for a school place in some regions so it is best to carefully consider which schools you want to apply for.
Typically the pass rate of the 11 plus is high, with only the top 30% of children sitting the exam passing. The pass rate is set at this level to ensure that the schools have access to the top performing students.
Failing The 11 Plus Exam
Obviously, everyone wants to pass the test, but as can be seen above it’s not possible, and some children will fail. If the mark is close to the pass mark then an appeal can be lodged to overturn the result. This can work, but there are no guarantees.
But failing the eleven plus isn’t the be all and end all. In preparation for the exam, a child will often improve greatly their abilities in core subject areas which help them to push on in their future academic studies and they gain more confidence in their own abilities which can have a positive impact on general behaviour.
For information about 11 Plus selection reviews and appeal in the Buckinghamshire region, click here.
So What Next
For more information on our Bucks 11+ course with Kate Bridges, click here.