The 11-plus or Eleven plus
The 11-plus or Eleven plus is an examination administered to some
children in England in the final year of primary education. This is at the age
of 11 to 12 years. The term 11 plus is derived from this age band. 11 plus
exams forms the entrance process for Grammar schools and it checks of
children are ready for the academic rigour of a grammar school of some of
the 164 grammar schools in England.
The 11 + test is supposed to check a child’s intelligence through testing,
mathematics, English and a variety of reasoning in a variety of contexts.
These include verbal reasoning and non-verbal reasoning. The reasoning
papers are not taught in schools and do not form part of the National
> Verbal Reasoning eleven plus tests involves thinking about
vocabulary, text and solving problems, sequences etc.
> Non-verbal Reasoning eleven plus tests involves thinking about
pictures, diagrams, illustrations and solving problems based on
> Mathematics and English eleven plus test requirements are very
high where these are used.
Many of the 11 plus tests used by grammar schools or local authorities and
were set by GL. Increasingly, CEM – Centre for Evaluation &
Monitoring or the University of Durham is setting the papers. T
his is because they are a non-profit, independent organisation. Unlike the
GL papers who produce example papers for sale CEM 11 + TM (or Durham
11 plus) do not.
The 11 plus papers come in two formats: Traditional format involves
writing the answers in a space on the eleven plus test paper. Multiple
choice format marks their answer on a separate score sheet by putting a
line against the correct answer and computer optical reading machine marks
Local authorities and in some case schools administer the eleven plus exam
administration. Visit What areas still have Eleven Plus Exams? for details in
each LA or selective area.
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