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PostPosted: Mon Mar 10, 2014 12:48 pm 
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I'm new to this forum and would value some advice from established members. My son will be sitting the Reading School exam later this year and has been doing lots of practice papers, but we have little idea how these relate to the Reading exam. I know the format is changing (I believe to CEM) this year, so past performance isn't a perfect guide. Nevertheless, it would be extremely useful to know what sort of marks boys who got into Reading in previous years were getting in their practice papers.

I'm realize that there are many different practice papers (Bond, CGP, etc) and that these are at different standards but any information on this would be really helpful, at least as a rough sort of benchmark. I've looked through previous posts to the forum but can't find anything on this.

Many thanks,

Peter


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 10, 2014 1:19 pm 
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Location: Reading
This should help you get started, there are a few links to other threads in the forum

viewtopic.php?f=10&t=29647


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 10, 2014 1:26 pm 
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It's extremely difficult to say. The main two reasons being that for some reason there are generally more Kendrick parents that Reading parents here (and the Kendrick parents are on the whole chattier!), and that it's only been for the last 2 years that the Reading hopefuls have got their standardised score.

I don't think I've seen anyone post raw Reading marks compared with their son's standardised score, whereas for Kendrick I've seen several, and in recent years the Kendrick candidate has needed low90's (around 70/75) to be successful. I imagine the boys are similar as they have similar numbers of candidates, but who knows.

As for practice papers, when my son was preparing 3 years ago, he was getting nigh on 100% for maths, 90-95% for reasoning, and about 85-90% for English. (I saw some of his old marks when I had the papers out again for my dd last year!)


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 10, 2014 1:32 pm 
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Judging by raw scores from other areas using CEM, they are much lower, but then the tests are harder.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 10, 2014 1:35 pm 
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Yeah, I'm guessing Peter just wants the Bond/GL scores to make a basic assessment. If you can't get over 60% on a GL NVR paper, there are likely to be a lot of kids who do better than you. But if you're getting 98% all the time, you're probably on the right track.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 10, 2014 1:48 pm 
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Thanks for these very helpful replies. Aliportico is quite right, I'm just looking for some rough guidance to know whether we are on the right track or not. Our son could probably work a bit harder but I don't want to work him into the ground! I think he's probably there or thereabouts on English and VR/NVR but it sounds like we need to do more on Maths. From what I'm hearing, really he needs to be getting 90% or even 95% on test papers to be confident we're in the right area.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 10, 2014 2:17 pm 
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Hi Peter, I just wanted to add that you still have 6 months to go. My son was getting around the 90% mark, sometimes more and sometimes less throughout the summer holidays. I'm pretty sure that at this stage his marks were generally lower (sometimes a lot lower!) but improving. My son will be starting at Reading School in September. Sounds as if you're on the right track but as said before please bear in mind the changes to the tests this year; there is a familiarisation paper on the Reading School website that you can look at. Good luck.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 10, 2014 3:08 pm 
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Yes, I'm definitely talking about marks towards the end. Fwiw, ds is Good At Maths (lol), and pretty average (RS average) at everything else, so 100% in maths is not essential :)


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 10, 2014 7:04 pm 
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Joined: Fri Nov 17, 2006 8:54 pm
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Location: caversham
Peter43 wrote:
I'm new to this forum and would value some advice from established members. My son will be sitting the Reading School exam later this year and has been doing lots of practice papers, but we have little idea how these relate to the Reading exam.

Peter


We worked on a target of 85% but given the change to cem and looking at other regions that use cem the target could be much lower but harder to consistently achieve, the tutor proof bit.

Have a look at Birmingham where latest feedback is the unpredictability of the cem exam content on the day and the impossible to complete timed sections, requires a different kind of preparation.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 11, 2014 6:54 pm 
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Thanks to everyone for these very helpful comments - we now have a clearer idea about what we should be aiming at. Maths is our weaker area so we are going to aim for a minimum of 80% in practice papers at the moment, fairly much where we are, raising this all being well to 90%+ by the summer. Following stevew61's suggestion I've looked through the Birmingham advice on CEM. It does look like reading, vocabulary and comprehension will be crucial but also timing - best to move on quickly and come back to any difficult questions once you've got to the end of the section.

I've also looked at the RS familiarisation paper and was surprised to see there was a grammatical error in one of the questions ('girls tops') - rather unfair to expect such a high standard from the candidates but CEM fail to live up to it themselves!


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