Highsted Grammar School

Highsted offer entry via the Kent 11+ PESE and their own Highsted Optional Test.

The Kent 11+

These exams are built on the GL (Granada Learning) exam framework and cover English, Maths, Verbal Reasoning and Non-Verbal Reasoning. Tie breakers are resolved by the open answer/written section of the English test.

There are nearly 40 selective schools in Kent with c15,000 children entering the exams every year.

GL (Granada Learning, previously NFER) is one of the two leading 11+ exam bodies in the UK, alongside CEM. GL papers are built from a question bank of c15,000 entrance questions and follow a pattern of repeating question styles. For these reasons it is generally agreed that GL entrance exams are easier to revise for than their less predictable CEM cousins.

Kent 11+ GL exams are usually spread across two or three papers with a separate writing task. Each paper lasts between 45 and 50 minutes, questions are majority multiple choice but there are usually at least some open answer questions and it is important to prepare for both. Multiple choice answers are recorded on a separate, computer-marked answer sheet, answers recorded on the paper itself are not valid.

The Highsted Optional Test

The Highsted test is based on multiple choice CEM questions, covering Maths, English, Verbal Reasoning and Non-Verbal Reasoning. Past papers are not provided. CEM questions do not come from a question bank in the same way as the GL framework that guides the Kent 11+. It is generally agreed that this makes it harder to prepare for as the questions and their styles are less predictable.

That said, most questions are multiple choice and there is often a focus on time-weighted questions, where certain questions carry more points than other questions.

Let’s look at what we know

  • Kent 11+ GL papers are built from a shared question bank following repeated question styles

  • The papers cover English, Maths, Verbal Reasoning and Non-Verbal Reasoning

  • With practise, it is possible to familiarise with the types of questions in a GL exam

  • Most questions are multiple choice with the answers recorded on a separate answer sheet

  • There are usually some open answer questions which should be prepared for

  • The Highsted Optional Test is historically based on the CEM framework

  • CEM papers are majority multiple choice with some open answers

  • The Highsted CEM covers English, Maths, Verbal Reasoning and Non-Verbal Reasoning

Choosing the right practice papers

Basic preparation:

Children should practise timed, multiple choice papers covering Maths, English, Verbal Reasoning and Non-Verbal Reasoning.

  • Multiple Choice - English & Grammar

  • Multiple Choice – Maths & Numeracy

  • Verbal Reasoning

  • Non-Verbal Reasoning

Advanced preparation:

Children should prepare for open answer questions covering English and Maths.

  • Open Answers – Maths & Numeracy

  • Open Answers – English & Grammar

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Highsted Grammar School