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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2007 3:57 pm 
Hi

I would like some clarification regarding the type of papers used for watford grammar and the other schools. I know there is a verbal reasoning and a Maths paper. What is the format- is it standard or multiple choice.

Thanks


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2007 5:18 pm 
Anonymous wrote:
I would like some clarification regarding the type of papers used for watford grammar and the other schools. I know there is a verbal reasoning and a Maths paper. What is the format- is it standard or multiple choice.

They are NFER papers in standard format. For the last two years the Maths paper has involved 50 questions in 50 minutes, with Verbal Reasoning being 100 questions in 45 minutes. Prior to that, VR was 80 questions in 50 minutes.

My young informant tells me the maths paper is of similar difficulty to a KS2 maths test. I don't mean the KS2 format (calculator part and mental maths part), but rather that the hardest questions don't require the level of analysis and intuition of the questions on the last page of a Habs paper, for example.

It's possible that the threshold will be higher this year, if the schools adjudicator overturns the schools' sibling criteria, because then siblings of test-selected children would also be competing for the selective places. The schools are all putting forward criteria with only minor changes from last year, but no-one can be sure how the adjudicator will interpret the new Admissions Code, and we won't know until September. Still, I expect the most vulnerable will be the sibling criterion at Rickmansworth and the cross-sibling arrangements between the Watford Grammar schools.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2007 5:27 pm 
Also, a literal reading of the Code implies that Rickmansworth, Parmiters and the Grammars will be required to reduce the proportion of academic selection to 25%.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 16, 2007 5:51 pm 
Hi

Thanks very much. I am starting to prepare my son for the exams and shall now start with the standard papers.

It will be very interesting to see how the admissions criteria is set for the future years with respect to siblings. I have another son who has to go through this in a few years time.

AS


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PostPosted: Tue Jun 26, 2007 6:24 pm 
This year it appears that Dame Alice Owens used the same VR paper as the Herts consortium. DAO provide example test papers and so you might want to visit their web site to get some samples.

Failing that I trained my boy using Standard Format NFER for both Maths and VR - although the practice papers for VR are generally only 80 questions.

Anecdotadly the maths paper is seen to be quite easy while the VR is tough.


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PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2007 3:41 pm 
Stig wrote:
Anecdotadly the maths paper is seen to be quite easy while the VR is tough.

The maths papers seem to lack questions that would distinguish talented young mathematicians from those less gifted but coached for accuracy and timing. The most challenging question last year was about a path around a garden, as I recall. This will be a larger factor this year with the reduction of the selected proportion from 35% to 25%.

The difficulty of the VR was more the number of questions to be answered in the given time, rather than the difficulty of individual questions, as I understand it. Again, there's a danger of selection for coaching (i.e. social selection).


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