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 Post subject: Grammar tests in 2011
PostPosted: Sun Mar 13, 2011 7:11 am 
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Joined: Sat Mar 12, 2011 2:34 pm
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We're getting in a panic already about what to expect in the tests in 2011.

Could someone tell me/us what we can expect in the tests for the Glos schools, please?

Also, what kinds of marks do we need to be aiming for? I understand that they are modified in some way to get the marks scores I've read about on here, but how does that translate into accuracy on the test examples? eg, are we looking at 80% accuracy?

many thanks in advance :)


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 13, 2011 11:44 am 
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Hello Stressedalready,

I presume you know the basics about the test? Two Verbal Reasoning tests, one with 85 questions in 45 mins and one with 80 questions in 50 mins, both sat on the same day with a short break in the middle and some practice questions first?

Percentage you need to achieve varies - in the actual test, I think it's reckoned that you need 80% average between the two tests for Denmark Road/Tommies and 70-75% average for Ribston/Crypt.

However - Your DC's scores will almost certainly drop in the actual test, so in practice they need to be scoring higher than this (but not yet - only in the couple of months before they sit it!).

Also - some practice papers are easier than others. Most children find the official Nfer papers reasonably easy and should be able to score well over 90%. Walsh is harder - My DD never got over 86% and sometimes as low as 80% (she passed well for Denmark, Ribston and Stroud High)

The tutors level 3 papers were middling - DD got 90% ish but found them a struggle to finish in the time.

Please don't panic if your DC isn't getting these kinds of scores yet, or is working too slowly. There are also DC's who never manage to hit 90%+ on any of the practice papers, but still pass the exam, because they don't panic, and still score the 80% they were getting in practice.

Hope this is some help.

Good luck, its a very stressful journey but there's lots of support and help on this forum,

Pixiequeen


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 13, 2011 11:53 am 
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Joined: Sat Feb 21, 2009 2:09 pm
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(Excuse any duplication - Pixiequeen just got there before me)

Hello stressedalready - Love the name! Think I should change mine to "stressedagain", having been through this once already and with a second child doing it this year.

All Gloucestershire grammar schools use the same test on the same day. They will share results - so no harm saying you want your child's score to be considered by all of them, if you so wish.

The test consists of 2 multiple choice verbal reasoning papers, with a short break between the papers. One lasts 45mins, the other 50mins. There's no point practising non-verbal reasoning with your child, as that is not tested here.

Pates requires the highest scores, then Denmark Rd & Tommies, followed by all the rest (Crypt, Marling, SHS & Ribston.)

The scoring system is based around a normal distribution i.e. you won't be told what % your DC scored, it'll be a mark based around everyone else's performance who wants to be considered for that school too. This is the key point - there are only a certain number of GS places in Glos, so it's a competition. In other words, if the paper is really easy and/or all the other children are really bright, your child might achieve a high % but still not be allocated a "mark" which gets them a place. On the other hand, if the paper is difficult and/or the other children are not so bright, a lower % would be enough. There's really no way of knowing in advance.

I have seen people make comments that in practice papers you should be looking at maybe 90-95% for Pates, 80-90% for DRd/Tommies and 65%+ for the others: but this is just guidance and can't be relied on. Certainly I know of children getting 95%+ in practice papers who didn't pull it off on the day, and others who would've been expected to score lower, who appeared to surpass themselves. Children get better with practice - so don't worry if your DC isn't hitting these kind of scores when you first try.

Hope this helps & let us know how you get on.


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 13, 2011 4:49 pm 
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Joined: Sat Mar 12, 2011 2:34 pm
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thank you for the replies - very helpful.


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2011 9:47 pm 
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Joined: Thu Dec 16, 2010 11:24 pm
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Hi PixieQueen - You mentioned:

Percentage you need to achieve varies - in the actual test, I think it's reckoned that you need 80% average between the two tests for Denmark Road/Tommies and 70-75% average for Ribston/Crypt.

Is this typically the case each year? I enquired at SHS and they mentioned the pass mark was around 85%. As I have an older child (Dec), she would need even higher to get in. I am totally confused and stressed on what we need to aim for!

Regards
IM


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 20, 2011 11:38 pm 
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Joined: Wed Nov 26, 2008 11:06 pm
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Hello InquisitiveMum

I got those figures from a previous post in this forum (it's still there but several years ago..). I'm surprised SHS told you a percentage - problem is that there isn't a 'pass mark' as such. SHS (and all the other Glos. Grammars) pass the top however many (this year SHS seem to have passed about 250 I think - not come across anyone with a ranking lower than that.) scorers in the exam. Therefore it follows that on a year where the papers are hard or the cohort more average, a lower percentage will be required to gain a pass mark.

I tried my hardest to work out what my DD would need to score - highest score you can get on each paper is 141 (although this doesn't necessarily equate to 100%...) and I think the lowest is 70, but someone else might be able to put me right. 70 doesn't mean a getting none right though - it's all got something to do with statistics which is beyond me :D

Anyway, my DD scored 241 which gave her a rank of 122. I know because I've got her scores from Ribston and Denmark Road that she did better in the second paper (106 first paper, 123 second paper for Ribston, I think). Judging from what my DD said about the exam I think she probably got between 75% and 80% right on the first paper and max. 85% right on the second paper. She certainly made a lot of mistakes on the first paper and rarely hit 90% on harder papers so I doubt very much she got an average of 85% over both papers.

Girls who scored a fair bit lower got places this year - DD's friend scored 223 and got in.

If I were you I would aim at 90% in most papers, but not worry if your DD doesn't get that high - average of mid 80's is probably fine. Time management is crucial - moving on from difficult questions promptly to get to the end of the paper, and then going back for another go if there is any time left.

I will stop rabbiting now..time to go to bed!

Hope I haven't confused you even more. :D I'm not at my most coherent this time of night!

Pixiequeen


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2011 7:07 am 
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Joined: Mon Jun 18, 2007 2:32 pm
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Location: East Kent
welcome to the forum stressed again.

viewtopic.php?f=16&t=9930

may help.

Take time and explore the rest of the site too (drop down menus at top of page). You should find lots of information about the Gloucestershire test on the site and in the forum.


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