Examinations & Assessments

Common Entrance at 13+

The 13+ Common Entrance examination is strongly supported by many of the top prep and independent senior schools in the UK. Its rigorous syllabuses and breadth of subjects provide a strong academic focus for pupils in Years 7 and 8 and an excellent preparation for GCSEs. It offers the following benefits:

  • High academic standards and rigorous syllabuses
  • Senior schools know what to expect
  • Academic breadth across 11 subjects, many of which will be continued at senior school
  • Provides a trusted, well-known focus for pupils in stand-alone prep schools in years 7 and 8
  • There is compelling evidence that formal examinations lead to high standards
  • Favourable comparison with state sector, where Years 7 and 8 are part of senior school
  • Not using Common Entrance likely to lead to narrowing of curriculum
  • Independent school parents are familiar with, and trust, Common Entrance

Pupils sit the Common Entrance examination at 13+ when they are in Year 8. There are three examination sessions each year, in November, January and May/June.

The core subjects - English, Mathematics and Science - are compulsory. In addition, candidates can sit papers in a wide range of subjects chosen from French, Geography, German, Classical Greek, History, Latin, TPR and Spanish. The core subjects, most modern languages, Latin and Classical Greek are offered at more than one level. Weaker candidates are not expected to tackle papers beyond their ability.

Senior schools which use Common Entrance at 13+

Further details are available for schools in the Schools section of the website.

Further details are available for parents in the Parents section of the website.