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Independent Schools Entrance Exam Preparation

We provide guidance for the preparation for Independent Selective School Entrance Exams at 7+, 11+ and 13+ stages. The lessons are delivered specific for the age group and we are aware of the requirements which the child needs to be met for each Independent Selective School Entrance Exams.

Selective Independent Schools concentrate on all or some of the areas as of Grammar Schools or may have additional requirements. A child is prepared as per the requirements of the school they have chosen to apply.Children preparing for Selective Independent schools may benefit from the ARK 11 Plus Programmes from Year 3 onwards however it is essential that parents discuss their intentions for the child so that we can provide the best possible combination of programmes to suit the child. It may be that the best option for the child is to receive private one to one tuition in the subject areas tested. In addition parents need to be aware that certain Selective Independent Schools focus on “the whole child”, rather than just being highly academic which need to be identified before applying.

We can help prepare children for following, but not limited to, Selective Independent Schools Entrance Exams.

What is the 7+ entrance exam?

The 7+ entrance exam is a competitive selection exam used by an increasing number of top independent schools in London for entry into Year 3. Your child will sit the exam whilst in Year 2. Most schools run the exam in January.

What is tested in the process?

The 7+ exam mostly tests Maths and English. Some schools now also include a Reasoning paper containing Verbal and Non-Verbal Reasoning. The tests are usually in a written or computer based form but there can be verbal sections testing mental arithmetic, spelling, memory and dictation.

If your child passes the examination stage, they may be asked for your child for an interview. (Some schools conduct the interviews beforehand or on the same day as the written tests). The interview process will usually include a one-on-one chat with the Headmaster/Headmistress and some group tasks.

How to prepare your child?

English (Comprehension, Grammar, story writing) The main focus should be around comprehension Grammar and story-writing skills. For comprehension, responses must be provided in full sentences unless otherwise stated. The key to doing well in this exam is to have a solid technique, wide-ranging vocabulary and practice.

Some schools also test spelling, grammar, memory and dictation. For example, they may be asked to correct a sentence or there may be a spelling test. Some exam may contain written test in English, collaborative activities and a reading test.


Most papers contain mental mathematics and could be tested in both a verbal and written form. There will also be longer word problems that require two or three-step solutions as well as mathematical puzzles and more abstract questions that require deeper understanding. The key is doing a small amount of practice consistently and regularly.


Some of the schools test Reasoning and so it is worth checking whether it will be examined by the schools you are interested in. Both Verbal and Non-Verbal Reasoning could be included in the exam.

What happens during interviews and assessment days? Interviews are generally rather informal and relaxed. Your child will likely be asked about their hobbies, sport, holidays and interests and their responses and input will likely guide the conversation.

Our Programmes

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11 Plus from Year 3

Helps children prepare for the 11 Plus Exam at a more gradual pace with introduction to VR & NVR.

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11 Plus from Year 4

In line with the Maths and English National Curriculum & lays a solid foundation for 11 Plus.

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11 Plus from Year 5

More rigorous and intense preparing children for the entrance exam held at the end of the Year 5.

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11 Plus Intensive

11 plus Intensive programme from March to September, focused on revision and exam techniques.

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11 Plus Summer Boot Camp

Revise and retain for 11 Plus during the summer break for Year 5s, relaxed approach.

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11 Plus Mock Exams

Two full length papers of 45 minutes each. Adapted to the format of the real examinations.

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Private School Exams

Guidance for the preparation for Independent Selective School Entrance Exams.

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11 Plus Resources

Some of the free 11 plus resources to help your child to get ready for 11 Plus.

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