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Bedford School 13 Plus (13+) Entrance Exam Information




Bedford School is an independent boys’ day and boarding school in the county town of Bedford. Dating back to 1552, it has educated a vast number of notable personalities, including Nobel Prize winners, eminent politicians and Victoria Cross recipients. [1]


Students at Bedford School are in a constant pursuit of excellence, benefitting both curricularly and extracurricularly from the school’s broad provision and stimulating learning environment. Equipped with knowledge across a range of disciplines such as mathematics, humanities, languages and technology, they proceed to successfully apply it in a variety of social and academic contexts.


The diverse enrichment programme encompasses astronomy, architectural drawing, computer programming, public speaking, swimming, water polo and fencing, among others. The wealth of activities on offer ensures that boys learn about both leadership and teamwork, maximising their resourcefulness for the benefit of their character development and behavioural versatility. [2]


Bedford School’s educational strategy is of the highest standard, resulting in exemplary academic and personal achievements which underpin responsible citizenship. Accordingly, boys are urged to ethically interact with the world around them, approaching the increasingly digitised landscape beyond school with an unparalleled understanding of its complexities.


Bedford School 13 Plus (13+) Exam Information


Address: De Parys Avenue, Bedford, MK40 2TU

County: Bedfordshire

Admissions info: or +44 (0)1234 362216

School type: Independent day and boarding school for boys

Open day: In the Spring and Autumn terms

13+ Exam date, pretest entry: November-March of Year 6/Year 7

13+ Exam date, standard entry: January of Year 8


Open Events for Bedford School 13 Plus (13+) Entry


Open Events allow prospective families to visit the school’s campus and tour its facilities. Meetings with the Head and key staff members will take place, offering you and your son the unique opportunity to learn first-hand about the teaching and enrichment provision. Personal visits can also be booked. Please click here for more details. 


Bedford School 13 Plus (13+) Admissions


13+ entry into Bedford School is through two routes: pretest entry and standard entry. Pretest entry applicants can attend formal examinations anytime between November and March of Year 6 or Year 7. Standard entry applicants take the tests in January of Year 8. 


  • Pretest applicants are assessed using an online Reasoning test. There will also be an interview. Following successful performance in the exam and interview, as well as quality reference from your son’s current school, he may receive an unconditional offer of a place. 


  • Standard entry applicants will sit a paper-based exam and an online test called Bedford School Aptitude Test (BSAT) in January of the year of entry. The admissions process includes an interview with a senior staff member and references from your son’s current school. 


Please note that places must be accepted with a payment of a deposit: £500 for a day place and £1,000 for a boarding place. 


Bedford School 13 Plus (13+) Scholarships and Bursaries


Scholarships at Bedford School are valued at 10% of fees. Top performing applicants in the BSAT examinations will be invited to sit further assessments as part of the Academic Scholarship evaluation process. Art Scholarships are also available and they are awarded following a practical assessment and an interview with the Director of Art.


Drama Scholarships are awarded following a monologue and group workshop participation, and Music Scholarships are offered following a successful audition. For the latter, a Grade 6 standard is required (on the main instrument).


Sports Scholarships are allocated on the basis of leadership skills and physical agility, as assessed in a trial. A reference of your son’s past sporting successes will also be taken into consideration. 


As a recognition of outstanding talent in the areas of art, music, drama and sport, Bedford School offers the Brian Saville Scholarship. This award is worth additional 25% of fees. Please click here to learn more about scholarships. 


Financial support, in the form of a means-tested bursary, is available to applicants from low income families who couldn’t otherwise benefit from a Bedford School education. Under certain circumstances, these awards can cover 100% of fees.


Please note that, as part of the evaluation process, your son’s potential, academic achievement and talents will be considered. More details are available on this page


Bedford School 13 Plus (13+) Pretest Entry Exam Format


The Bedford School 13+ pretest entry examination consists of the following assessment:


  • ISEB Common Pretest 


The online ISEB Pretest examines your child’s ability in skills such as numeracy, problem solving and vocabulary, with emphasis on how he thinks and responds to the curriculum. The test consists of modules testing Maths, English, Verbal Reasoning and Non-Verbal Reasoning.


There will also be an interview, aiming to provide an insight into your son’s interests and his level of compatibility with the Bedford School ethos.


Bedford School 13 Plus (13+) Standard Entry Exam Format


The Bedford School 13+ standard entry examination consists of the following assessments:


  • Bedford School Aptitude Test (BSAT)
  • Mathematics
  • English


The Bedford School Aptitude Test (BSAT) has the same format as CEM Select, which examines your child’s skills in Verbal Reasoning, Non-Verbal Reasoning and Numerical Reasoning. 


The maths exam assesses problem-solving abilities and arithmetic skills. The paper will include questions on number, measurement, geometry, algebra and statistics.


The English paper examines comprehension and writing skills, including inference, vocabulary and punctuation. 


Please see below for further details and recommendations on how to prepare for the Bedford School 13+ entrance examinations.


How to Prepare for the Bedford School 13 Plus (13+) Exam


To successfully prepare your child for the selective Bedford School 13+ entrance exam, we recommend using practice tests. Our resources fully reflect the actual 13+ exam by covering all the question types that could come up, whilst helping your child become familiar with the exam layout. 


Coupled with a structured study plan, our practice tests will help you define any weak areas that require additional work at the earliest. They will also help you recognise your child’s strengths, resulting in a significant boost of their confidence in the lead up to the big day.


Furthermore, your child will get used to answering questions quickly and effectively, under time pressure.


Our resources are designed to be age-appropriate, yet challenging, and, as such, they are used successfully by tens of thousands of students every year. Our recommendations to help your child prepare for the Bedford School 13 plus entrance examination can be found below.


Bedford School 13 Plus (13+) Exam Practice Papers


Bedford School 13+ Pretest Exam 


ISEB Pretest


To help your child prepare for the ISEB Pretest, we recommend the following online resources, covering all key question types known to come up in the exam:


Full Practice Tests


ISEB Pretest Practice Test 1


ISEB Pretest Practice Test 2


ISEB Pretest Practice Test 3


ISEB Pretest Practice Test 4


ISEB Pretest Practice Test 5


ISEB Pretest Practice Test 6


ISEB Pretest Practice Test 7


ISEB Pretest Practice Test 8


ISEB Pretest Practice Test 9


ISEB Pretest Practice Test 10


ISEB Pretest Practice Tests Bundle – Save 30%


Video Courses


ISEB Pretest English Course


ISEB Pretest Maths Course


ISEB Pretest Non-Verbal Reasoning Course


ISEB Pretest Verbal Reasoning Course


ISEB Pretest Video Courses Bundle – Save 25%


Skill Practice


ISEB Pretest English – Comprehension


ISEB Pretest English – Sentence Completion


ISEB Pretest English – Spelling & Punctuation


ISEB Pretest Mathematics


ISEB Pretest Non-Verbal Reasoning


ISEB Pretest Verbal Reasoning


ISEB Pretest Skill Practice Bundle – Save 25%



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ISEB Pretest Workbooks


If you’re interested in our range of popular ISEB Pretest Workbooks that are delivered directly to your home, please click here.




This pack will help prepare your son for the Year 6/Year 7 interview:


11+ Interviews – The Complete Guide


Bedford School 13+ Standard Entry Exam


Bedford School Aptitude Test (BSAT)


The following full practice and skill practice tests are specifically designed to help your child familiarise themselves with the demands of the BSAT assessment:


Full Practice


CEM Select Practice Test 1


CEM Select Practice Test 2


CEM Select Practice Test 3


CEM Select Practice Test 4


CEM Select Practice Test 5


CEM Select Practice Tests Bundle – Save 25%


Skill Practice


CEM Select – Letter Connections


CEM Select – Missing Words


CEM Select – Multiple Meanings


CEM Select – Selected Letters


CEM Select – Related Words


CEM Select Skill Practice Bundle – Save 25%



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We highly recommend the use of the following papers to help develop your son’s arithmetic and problem-solving skills within the examination context of the Bedford School 13 Plus maths test:


13+ Mathematics Pack 1




We highly recommend the following packs to successfully prepare your son for the Bedford School 13+ English paper:


13+ English Pack 1


13+ English Pack 2


13+ English: Rewrite & Improve



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Our practice tests aim to show what sort of questions were included in Bedford School 13+ past papers. The information provided about Bedford School was believed to be correct at the time of publishing. However, please be aware of future changes. We advise you to contact the school directly if you are unsure of anything. School contact details are provided within the post.


Other entry points for Bedford School:


Click here to learn about Year 3 entry via the 7 Plus (7+) Exam

Click here to learn about Year 4 entry via the 8 Plus (8+) Exam

Click here to learn about Year 7 entry via the 11 Plus (11+) Exam

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