CEM 11 Plus

Buckinghamshire 11+  -  Children's Educational Material 11+ TM

The Buckinghamshire11plus.co.uk website provides advice and information about Buckinghamshire 11+ exams for the Bucks 11+ and Children's Educational Material for the 11+. The Bucks website includes advice on how to prepare for the Bucks eleven plus exams and material suitable for preparation.

Buckinghamshire has 13 selective grammar schools (4 boys, 4 girls and 5 mixed gender) and all children in the area take the 11+ test unless they opt out. It is not a super-selective region as it operates a distance based criteria for grammar school admission, subject to a regional automatic qualifying score of 121. The schools are backward as they still believe in catchment areas, with Dr Challoner`s Grammar School admissions policy being bizarre.

The  schools use tests from CEM ® Centre for Evaluation & Monitoring.® CEM® Centre 11+ tests  are not tutor-proof and are one of the easiest to prepare for. Complete solutions are available using WordBuilder.co.uk and CoolCleverKids.co.uk.  From 2018 the schools will use tests from GL Assessment ®, having dumped CEM ® Centre as it appears the realised the tests were not tutor-proof. But, the newer GL Assessment ® tests are very similar to CEM ® Centre tests and the above tools are equally useful.

The Buckinghamshire11plus website provides advice and information about 11 plus exams and Children's Educational Material (CEM) for the 11+.

2018 Year 7 Entry for Buckinghamshire Grammar Schools


3pm 8th May 2017 to 3pm 30th June 2017.
Bucks children in state schools need not register as they are automatically opted in. Out of area and private school children need to register.

Test Dates

Thursday 14th September 2017

A preparation test is held on Tuesday 12th September 2017 comprising of two tests lasting 25-30 minutes each, containing questions that are similar to the actual test. These preparation tests will not be marked.


13th October 2017

Test Supplier

CEM Centre for Evaluation & Monitoring, Durham  (CEM):  CEM 11+
Weighting is 50% for verbal ability,
30% for numerical ability
20% for non-verbal ability.

There will be a mix of different questions in each of the two test papers and the questions will be divided into timed sections. The invigilator will play a CD with complete instructions and timings for children sitting the tests. Each test lasts one hour including an introduction and worked examples, with 50 minutes for answering the questions. The questions will be multiple choice with answers marked on a separate answer sheet. There is a 30-minute break between papers.

The two Bucks eleven plus tests will be machine-marked. The tests will be in a multiple-choice format and the pupils will complete machine-readable answer sheets. Scores in both papers are added together and age standardised. The qualifying score is 121.

Two days before the test Buckinghamshire children sit two preparation papers each lasting about 25-30 minutes containing test items that mirror what they will find in the full tests. The purpose of this exercise is to give the pupils experience of test-taking conditions as well as giving them the opportunity to work through example test material. The preparation papers will not be marked or taken away from the school and will be destroyed after completion.

Qualifying Mark 121

Buckinghamshire Grammar Schools



PAN (Year 7)

Aylesbury Grammar School



Aylesbury High School



Beaconsfield High School



Burnham Grammar School 



Chesham Grammar School



Dr Challoners Grammar School



Dr Challoners High School



John Hampden Grammar School



Royal Grammar School


192 ( 182 + 10 boarders)

Royal Latin Grammar School



Sir Henry Floyd Grammar School



Sir William Borlase School



Wycombe High School




Unlike any other region, Buckinghamshire children are fortunate enough to be able to sit two preparation papers. Whether the same preparation papers are used in subsequent years or the practice is scrapped, remains to be seen.

A word of warning: scoring "equivalent" standardised scores in the Birmingham and Warwickshire opt-in 11+ tests may be substantially more difficult than in the Buckinghamshire 11+ tests because the areas are highly selective compared to Bucks and many children in these areas (unlike in Bucks) have been "prepped" since year 4 and many from year 5. Technically, if the 11+ tests are resistant to prepping then difficulty and performance in these tests should be comparable. This may not be the case and many Bucks children may struggle to score as highly in other area tests, not because of ability, but because of lack of preparation. It also raises the question why Bucks children can preparation tests when other children do not.

Bright year 5 children are supposed to be stretched, so technically these children may have been expected to cover year 6 maths. It appears that some 11+ maths questions in Birmingham, Walsall and Warwickshire go beyond what an average year 6 child would have covered and some questions would be akin to old level 6 Sats questions.

As with most tests, there is evidence that prepping usually results in a higher score than one would otherwise gain. Buckinghamshire children require less prepping than Birmingham children, as there is no advantage in a Bucks child scoring higher than the automatic qualifying score. Thus, there is little reason to put in the effort to score substantially higher than 121. In Birmingham, schools have different qualifying marks and the highest scores win places in the most popular schools in a true competition (there are no catchment areas). As with Universities, all grammar schools are not equal and the perceived "best" or most popular Birmingham schools have the highest qualifying scores. The GCSE and "A" level league tables clearly indicate all grammar schools within any region are not equal. This holds true for Bucks grammar schools.

The lack of "true" competition in the Buckinghamshire "qualifying mark-post code" admissions system is a reason why Bucks children require less prepping. With a huge tutoring culture in Buckinghamshire, which has continued for the new 11+ test, perhaps, the 11+ is as much an indication of prepping as natural ability. In an era of progress, time will tell whether the "house price" admissions system will change to a more competitive highest score system with a larger catchment area, or scrapping of catchment areas altogether in order for newly formed academies to attract the brightest children through an 11 plus selection system to enhance their exam league standing and provide children with a wider, and a fairer, grammar school choice. Since schools are funded by national taxation, some argue that "local schools for local children" is as outdated as "local Universities for local students" and all children should be provided with the opportunity to study at any school, irrespective of where they may currently live. After an offer, families can move locally, if so desired.

Click here for 2018 entry CEM 11+ ® test dates

11+ Preparation

Areas tested include English (Vocabulary: synonyms & antonyms; Comprehension; Cloze passages/text; Jumbled sentences); Mathematics including data processing, and Non-verbal reasoning.

There is no evidence any 11+ tests are tutor proof, nor tuition and preparation does not confer an advantage – the opposite is true.

Recommended Preparation Material.

1. English and Verbal Reasoning is covered at WordBuilder.co.uk

  PDF downloads from the shop at: Buckinghamshire11plus.co.uk or 11plus.eu



a. Ultimate Verbal Reasoning. 1,800 questions.


b. Common Synonyms and Antonyms for 11+ & KS2 Sats (over 1,000 entries).


c. Common Words With Multiple Meanings for 11+ & KS2 Sats (350 entries).


d. Common Misspelled Words at Year 6 - KS2 & 11+ (over 250 words).


2. Maths is covered at CoolCleverKids.co.uk

PDF downloads from the shop at: Buckinghamshire11plus.co.uk or 11plus.eu

Lesson Notes


a: Ratio and Proportion Unit Method (Lesson Notes).


b: Percentages (simple percentages) Lesson Notes.


c: Percentage Multipliers Lesson Notes.


d: Rules for Multiples of Numbers (Lesson Notes).


3. NVR (Non-verbal Reasoning) is covered at CoolCleverKids.co.uk

Non-verbal Reasoning (NVR) Booklet


Ultimate NVR: over 30 different types of NVR familiarisation questions.


4. Mock Tests: Use Mocks in the Shop at: Buckinghamshire11plus.co.uk or 11plus.eu

Mock Test


1. 11+ Progress Mock Pack 1. MF Test A & B. (Use as first test during Year 5).


2. 11+ Progress Mock Pack 2. MF Test A & B. (Use as second test during Year 5).


3. 11+ Progress Mock Pack 3. MF Test A & B. (Use as third test during Year 5).


4. 11+ Practice Mock Test Pack 1. MF Test A & B. Multi-format (MF).


5. 11+ Practice Mock Test Pack 2. MF Test A & B. Multi-format (MF).


6. 11+ Practice Mock Test Pack 3. MF Test A & B. Similar to SWW 2 Jul 13.


7. 11+ Practice Mock Test Pack 4. MF Test A & B. Multi-format (MF). 


Dr Challoner`s Grammar School Address Requirement

In order to qualify for admission under rules referring to the schoo`’s catchment area, the applicant must have been resident at their home address continuously since 1 April of the year preceding proposed admission. b) If a family still owns a property within 20 miles of the school which has been the main family home, a property closer to the school will not be accepted as the basis for a legitimate residence qualification even if the former property is leased to a third party.

We believe this is unreasonable as it discriminates against out children who have moved in to the area and amounts local apartheid. Schools are funded by national taxation and not local taxation, so catchment areas are nothing more than a form of discrimination and backward.

Buckinghamshire Transfer Test

There will be two test papers containing a mixture of questions on verbal reasoning and comprehension, non-verbal reasoning and mathematical reasoning.

Each paper is approximately 50 minutes in duration and will be divided into timed sections, and instructions will be given on an audio soundtrack.

Most questions are multiple choice and all answers are marked on a separate machine-readable answer sheet. There will be a short break between the two test papers.

Free familiarisation booklets are available from this site and practice mocks are available from the shop.
CEM Centre for Evaluation
& Monitoring® CEM 11+ ® Tests
  • No official practice papers available
  • Buckinghamshire children sit a free familiarisation paper.
  • Instructions played via CD
  • Most tests comprise of two 50 minutes tests answered in a separate answer sheet
  • Mixture of multiple choice and marking a number on answer sheets
  • Similar tests to GL Assessments®
  • Prepare using WordBuilder & CoolCleverKids
  • Practice mock papers from the shop
GL Assessments®
(NFER®) 11+ Selection Tests
  • Practice papers available in the old format
  • Kent County Council provides a long familiarisation paper
  • Multiple choice format.
  • No claim that children do not need to prepare or practice or claim test is tutor-proof
  • Similar to tests from CEM Centre for Evaluation & Monitoring®
  • Prepare using WordBuilder & CoolCleverKids
  • Practice mock papers from the shop
11+ Children's Educational
Material Recommendation

English and Verbal Reasoning:

Maths &
Non-verbal Reasoning (NVR):


11+ Practice Papers from
Children’s Educational Material for the 11+
are available from the shop.
Word lists, lesson notes and `Ultimate NVR` questions are available from the shop.

Free material on this website.

11+ Tourism: Free Mock Tests

Under the Greenwich ruling all children, of the appropriate age, have a legal right to take any 11+ exam set by any authority and cannot be denied the opportunity to sit an exam solely on the basis of their address.
The Office of the School Adjudicator (OSA) confirmed the right to use tests as free mocks and the right to take tests late. A Head Teacher of a grammar school has confirmed in writing: `Legally I cannot stop you entering your child for our test.'  Late testing is also a legal right.
Many regions do not have catchment areas. Taking 11+ exams outside home catchments does not prejudice the balance and fairness of the testing, as tests are different. To make such a claim would imply a defunct testing process.

Note: Taking a "free mock" will cost the school money. But one would expect financially astute schools to consider the financial implications of setting an early test date. Common sense dictates an earlier test is likely to be used as a "free mock" and this has been well known to occur for many years. . The University of Durham® object to this strategy when it is a legal right. We cannot image why, as if the test is resistant to prepping, what difference would free mocks make? We believe there is no evidence that any 11+ test is resistant to prepping and practise will simply improve performance.

Click here for 2018 entry test dates (held during September 2017 to see which tests can be used as a free mock exam)
11+ Maths and NVR

The Maths site with NVR (Non-verbal reasoning) for Sats and 11+ preparation. Ideal for primary school education and selective school exams. Maths lesson notes; worksheets; presentations; games, & tests auto marked with explanations.

11+ English & VR

Verbal reasoning and English for the 11+, Sats and private/independent school entrance exams as well as primary school. Spellings; definitions; meanings; synonyms; antonyms; cloze passages; jumbled sentences & comprehension.

Sats Papers
Year 2-6 & 11+

Information relating to Sats Tests. Free downloads of Sats papers covering Year 2 to 6 with no registration. Prepare for Year 6 level 3-5, level 6 & 11+ tests. Download the latest phonics tests.
ATA React
Free Android App
Google Play

Fun FREE Android App to test your thinking and reaction speed. Four fun games: colours; shapes; numbers and next letter. Stores score history. Ideal for Sats & 11+ fun whilst you prepare. Download from Google Play.



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Download FREE SATs papers. No registration & no annoying popup adverts.
11+ English (Verbal Reasoning)
online preparation with

Spellings; Vocabulary; Synonyms; Antomyms; Conundrums; Cloze Passages; Comprehension, and Jumbled up sentences. Ideal for 11+ tests set at the CEM Centre, at Durham University®.
11+ Maths (Numerical Reasoning)
and NVR online preparation with

Free maths question generator
Lesson notes; presentations (videos); worksheets; games; Sats style tests from Year 2 to 6 including mental maths audio tests; private school 11+ tests, and CEM style past questions.
Now includes Non-verbal Reasoning.
Ideal for 11+ tests set at the CEM Centre, at Durham University®.
The 11+ information site
Helping children pass the 11+
Free advice and resources with
recommendations for preparation.

Children’s Educational Material 11+
Tel: +44 (0) 24 7641 6970 
Email: cemelevenplus@gmail.com
© 2013-2017. 11plus.eu. All rights reserved. Children's Educational Material for the 11+. 11plus.eu is a information website helping children pass the eleven plus. CEM Centre for Evaluation and Monitoring® is an independent not-for-profit research group based at the University of Durham® and neither are associated with 11plus.eu. GL Assessment ® has no connection with 11plus.eu. The views expressed are those of 11plus.eu. All trade names and trade marks are acknowledged.


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