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PostPosted: Wed Feb 26, 2014 8:11 am 
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Location: Herts
Good luck to all those who are waiting. So far so good! DG


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 26, 2014 11:19 pm 
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DD very pleased to have another option... Good luck for everybody waiting.


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 27, 2014 8:58 am 
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Friend of dd was offered a place but did not get through HBS or DAO which highlights how performance can vary across the different examinations.

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"To err is human;to forgive ,divine"


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 27, 2014 9:08 am 
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Actually it reflects that DAO and HBS are harder to get into than Habs and the North London Consortium schools. Nobody from our state primary has ever failed to get into any of the local boys indies such as Habs or St Albans or the North London Consortium Schools. But every year lots don't even make the 300's in ranking at DAO. I know of dd's who got into the scholarship tests at St Albans High School for Girls but were not able to get anywhere near a place at DAO. Does anyone know of girls getting DAO or HBS and not getting Habs and the Consortium schools? Either the Consortium format is more straightforward or the pass mark is lower. I think it is probably the latter. DG


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 27, 2014 10:15 am 
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The exams are done at different times... And that can make some difference.

Would it also be easier to tutor for state schools exams than for some indies - the format of papers is always published for the former? If easier to tutor, it should be harder to get in as well. It's a numbers game. Market cost goes up and down depending on demand and supply.

So overall of course that it should be harder to get a free place at HBS or QE than a paying place at Habs...


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 27, 2014 10:30 am 
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DD didn't take DAO but did do HB so I can only speak to that exam in relation to the Consortiums. The HB exam is marked to filter the VR/NVR in the first instance and then the actual maths and English. Plenty of DCs who struggle with VR/NVR will not even have had the maths and English marked. One of my DDs finds NVR very difficult because of a mild learning difficulty and wouldn't have stood a chance on the CEM format- we used HB as a free practice. The Consotium exams test actual skills- calculation, applying maths concepts to unfamiliar problems, comprehension and writing with flair and sophistication plus an interview to weed out the over-tutored and those who can't think creatively and those who they don't feel would take advantage of what's on offer at the schools. Besides DD, I know many seriously brainy DCs who really couldn't figure out NVR/VR including a Westminster Scholar (maths genius!). Ditto the girl in DDs class who was the product of serious tiger parenting and got in everywhere (went to SPGS) but didn't get top 300 at HB- mum hadn't drilled her in NVR/VR.
The Consortium includes a range of schools. Some are more selective than others. I also know several girls who got HB but not NLCS (including NLCS siblings). The exams are just testing different things. I understand that schools like HB and DAO can't interview and have a method of selection that is a raw numbers game. The indies can be more nuanced.


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 27, 2014 10:42 am 
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Not all state school formats are published. HBS does not offer past papers for their English and Maths papers, though the format of the CEM test is available. DAO and the Watford Consortium does not offer past papers for their VR. The ones DAO sell are Athey VR and they use Moray House which is along the same lines but not quite the same. Some of the student I know who sat last year did complain that some of the questions seemed different. Both my dds felt they were asked in a different way but were still the same question! So students went into all the North London Consortium tests knowing exactly what the English and Maths papers were going to look like (if they had checked on the website) but this was not the case for Habs or HBS applicants. or those doing the Watford and DAO VR. DG


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 27, 2014 11:19 am 
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The very fact that HBS, DAO ,Latymer and QE cannot interview means that they have to design their exams so that they are not a raw numbers game. HBS don't actually use NVR anymore, they use CEM numerical reasoning and VR. This is only to get the numbers down so they don't have to mark so many English and Maths papers. The English and Maths papers used by DAO , QE and HBS are designed for students who can apply skills. Why would you think that you would need actual skills to score highly on the English and Maths papers for the Consortium but not for DAO and HBS? Why would you think that you need flair and sophistication for the Comprehension and Creative Writing for the Consortium and not for DAO and HBS? They are not testing different things, they are testing the same things, only DAO and HBS do not have the safety net of the interview so they need to select their students using their English and Maths papers. If you look at the top twenty marks out of the thousand who sit DAO you will see that most have scored higher in one paper than the other. There are only an absolute handful who can score very highly in all three papers because of the nuances that have been placed all through the English and Maths papers. I know three students from the top twenty at DAO this year and last and even the one who came in the top Five with full marks on the VR paper and only dropping two marks on the English paper could not maintain that standard for the third paper. I am sure it would be the same for HBS if they release their marks. Very few students have that breadth. But only the ones closest to it will actually secure a place. The Consortium, Habs, HBS, QE and DAO all test applied skills, the only difference is that the Consortium has a lower pass mark as there are a lot more schools and places available than in the total of HBS, QE and DAO. DG


Last edited by Daogroupie on Thu Feb 27, 2014 11:42 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 27, 2014 11:31 am 
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Hi all!

This is my first post although I've been lurking around for the past few months!
My DD was offered a place at habs and SHHS and is on the wait list at NLCS. We are waiting to hear from hbs on Monday but she really has her heart set on NLCS. I'm not sure what happened as girls who are academically not as strong as my dd got a firm offer. Do they tend to work off their wait list?


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 27, 2014 11:35 am 
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DizzyMum wrote:
Hi all!

This is my first post although I've been lurking around for the past few months!
My DD was offered a place at habs and SHHS and is on the wait list at NLCS. We are waiting to hear from hbs on Monday but she really has her heart set on NLCS. I'm not sure what happened as girls who are academically not as strong as my dd got a firm offer. Do they tend to work off their wait list?


Hi DizzyMum and welcome to the forum

Not sure how the waiting list works for NLCS - there is some discussion on the forum and they may well over offer firm places as do many schools. Sorry your DD didn't get the firm offer you wanted but has done well with other offers - the trouble is with exams that it is just a snapshot and on any one day a DC can not do as well as may be expected. Fingers Crossed for Monday


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