The Wandsworth Test is an 11 plus exam used by state secondary schools in the London Borough of Wandsworth. It's taken by thousands of children every year.
In this article you will find:
Key information about the Wandsworth Test and why schools use it
An accurate, up-to-date breakdown of the test content
Expert guidance on how best to prepare your child
We have everything you need to know here in one place to ensure you and your child are fully prepared!
Registration opens: July 2023
Registration closes: mid-September 2023
Exam date: end of September 2023
Exam board type: GL Assessment
Results posted: end of October 2023
Local Authority Common Application Form (CAF) deadline: 31st October 2023
National school offer day: 1st March 2024
Admissions information: Wandsworth Council – [email protected], 020 8871 7316
Appeals: Wandsworth Appeals Service
The Wandsworth Year 6 Test is used by five partially-selective secondary schools:
Ashcroft Technology Academy (mixed), Putney
Burntwood School (girls), Earlsfield
Chestnut Grove Academy (mixed), Balham
Ernest Bevin Academy (boys), Tooting
Graveney School (mixed), Tooting
Schools use the Wandsworth Test as part of their Year 7 admissions process to indicate a child's academic ability. If your child has an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP), they do not have to take the test.
The results of the test are used to prioritise or categorise applicants. Pupils applying to Ashcroft Technology Academy, Chestnut Grove Academy and Ernest Bevin Academy will be placed into one of five ability bands, with an equal number of places offered within each band. 25% of places at Burntwood School and Graveney School will be reserved for applicants with the highest scores on the test.
The following schools also offer special aptitude places:
Ashcroft Technology Academy: up to 24 specialist technology places
Chestnut Grove Academy: up to 30 specialist places, each in art & design and modern foreign languages
If you would like to apply for a specialist place, your child will have to take the school's aptitude test in addition to the Wandsworth Test. You can apply for a special aptitude place by filling in your target school's supplementary information form (SIF).
The Wandsworth Test lasts just under two hours and consists of two papers. These are both set by GL Assessment – one of the major 11 plus exam providers in the UK.
All questions are multiple-choice. Your child will receive a question booklet and a pre-printed answer sheet, which is marked by computer. They will need to mark their answers by putting a pencil mark by the side of the correct answer.
Your child will not need to do any writing.
The non-verbal reasoning paper lasts 55 minutes in total (including time allocated for practice questions). It is divided into four shorter and individually-timed sections.
The questions are designed to test your child's ability to solve problems using abstract figures. Children will need to work out the similarities between shapes and codes and identify sequences.
The verbal reasoning paper lasts 50 minutes in total. There are no shorter or individually-timed sections.
Questions will assess your child's ability to reason using written information (letters and words). They will involve word games, such as using the letters from one word to make a new word, and matching words with similar meanings (synonyms).
80 verbal reasoning questions
Mirrors the content and format of standard GL verbal reasoning exams
Answer key and parents' guide
If your child attends a state primary school in Wandsworth, they will automatically be registered to take the Wandsworth Test at their current school.
Pupils attending independent schools, or primary schools outside of the Wandsworth local authority area, will need to be registered for the test separately.
The registration forms for the Wandsworth Test are available from the Wandsworth local authority website from July. You will have until mid-September to complete and return the form.
The test papers are marked by GL Assessment to ensure that they are marked fairly and consistently.
Your child's answer sheets will be marked using OMR (Optical Mark Recognition). A computer will identify the marks your child has made next to each question and allocate a point for each correctly marked answer. These marks will be added together to form a raw score.
The raw score is then standardised. This is a statistical process that takes into account your child's age in years and months at the time of taking the test, ensuring that children born later in the school year aren't disadvantaged. The standardised score is the final score, and the one used by schools to allocate places.
Your child's test scores will then be sent to the schools you have applied to and to Wandsworth Council. The council will send you an email with your child's scores by the end of October. You can use the results to decide which schools to list on your secondary school common application form.
Each school has its own admissions criteria and will use the test scores differently when allocating places.
The minimum and maximum standardised score for each test is 69 and 141 respectively, where a score of 100 represents the average for the age group. The scores for both test papers are added together.
The following historical data indicates the minimum scores for which pupils were offered places on National Offers Day (1st March) in previous years. Historical data is not available for Ernest Bevin Academy.
Children are placed into ability bands based on their non-verbal reasoning score. In 2022, the bands were:
Band A: 113 and above
Band B: 106-113
Band C: 98-105
Band D: 90-97
Band E: 89 and below
Here are our top tips to help your child prepare for the Wandsworth Year 6 Test.
It can be tempting to jump straight into practice papers to prepare for entrance exams. However, this is not an effective way to learn and can cause children to feel demotivated.
Your child should have a good understanding of the different verbal and non-verbal reasoning question types before testing their knowledge with practice papers. Using a ‘little and often’ approach when recapping content is key, as our brains encode new information more effectively when dealing with smaller ‘chunks’ of information. Experts recommend study sessions should last no longer than 30 minutes for children aged 10–11.
Test your knowledge!
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We understand how important this next step is for them, and for you. Please don't hesitate to get in touch with any questions you may have about the Wandsworth Test.
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