Senior School Entrance Examinations

The Entrance Examination for Year 7 entry in September 2018 will take place on Monday 15 January 2018.

Format of the morning

Candidates arrive at approximately 8.30am and take the three papers, English, Mathematics and Verbal Reasoning during the morning with a break for refreshments. Staff and students are available throughout the morning to help the candidates who should feel free to ask for help at any time. Girls can be collected from 12.30pm onwards.

Subject Papers 


  • The Mathematics Paper is 45 minutes long.
  • Calculators are not allowed.

Candidates will be expected to be familiar with various techniques and concepts on how to solve a variety of mathematical problems. These techniques and concepts should have been covered at Key Stage 2, in line with the National Curriculum. We are looking for girls to demonstrate familiarity, knowledge and skills in the following areas:

  • the ability to manipulate straightforward arithmetic – addition, subtraction, multiplication and division (although not long division) of whole numbers
  • multiplication tables
  • simple negative numbers and the equivalence and calculations of fractions, decimals and percentages
  • understanding of the 24 hour clock, money and simple timetables;
  • simple sequences
  • the metric system, estimation of length, area, and mass (in metric and common imperial units)
  • knowledge of simple plane (2D) and solid (3D) shapes and calculation of perimeters, areas and volumes of simple shapes
  • some elementary graph work may be useful
  • knowledge of angles at a point, on a straight line and in a triangle.
  • Formal knowledge of algebra is not required although questions may use or require informal use of simple algebra.
  • The questions set may be straightforward, testing knowledge or a standard skill, or they may be designed to test reasoning power or response to a simple, but unfamiliar, mathematical idea.
  • Candidates should note carefully the instruction to show all working clearly. The examiners are interested in, and may give credit for, working as well as for the answer. Every year candidates lose marks by rubbing out working for which they might have gained credit.
  • Candidates should be able to question the reasonableness of an answer.



  • The English paper is one hour long.
  • It tests comprehension, imagination and accuracy. 
  • There will be a short prose extract with questions to test reading.
  • There will be a mixture of short-answer questions and questions which demand a longer response.
  • There will also be an imaginative writing task.
  • A planning sheet will be available for this task, but does not have to be used.

Verbal Reasoning

The Verbal Reasoning paper is 60 minutes long and includes a 15 minute practice session. It is designed to test logic and intelligence, not general knowledge.


Mathematics: For candidates who are not used to working under test conditions and within a restricted time, suitable practice prior to the examination may be gained by obtaining commercially produced practice papers which usually have tests lasting about half an hour each.

Specimen maths paper

Answers to specimen maths paper

English: We expect candidates to be able to construct sentences, spell and punctuate correctly. If the candidate is not used to working under test conditions, some practice in writing essays to time is advisable.

Specimen English paper

Specimen English text 

Verbal Reasoning: Although preparation is not needed for this paper, some sample papers can be purchased at bookshops or on the internet e.g. Bond 10-11 VR assessment papers.

After the Examination

Following the Examinations we interview parents and their daughters. Interviews take the form of an informal chat with the Headmistress or a different senior member of staff. Your daughter may be asked about her responses in the examination papers or she may be asked more general questions about her interests, things she enjoys at school or any other relevant topics. There is no particular ‘type’ of girl we are looking for here, and certainly there are no ‘correct’ answers to most of the interview questions; the qualities we hope to see are a genuine enthusiasm for learning, a curiosity about the world and an ability to think about issues in depth. These qualities may display themselves in many different ways. We also like to meet with parents; this is not part of the selection procedure but an opportunity for you to ask any unanswered questions.
All applicants are informed of the schools decision via post; the letter will:

  • contain an offer of a place, or
  • contain an offer of a place on the reserve list, or
  • indicate that we are unable to offer a place.

Separate letters will be sent to those who have made enquiries about bursaries and scholarships.
To register for the Entrance Examinations please either contact The Admissions Officer, Mrs Jane Taylor, on 01244 312078 email Or you may prefer to complete the online registration form