13+, Grammar Schools

Boy in the classroom turning over an exam paper

Is your child set to sit the 12 Plus/13 Plus late transfer test in the hope of gaining a place at grammar school? If so, we’ve written this post especially for you.


Missing out on a school place at 11 Plus level can be quite discouraging for a child. However, if you’re lucky enough to live in an area where the 12+/13+ exam is used, your child could have a second chance of gaining entry through the late transfer test.


What is the 12 Plus/13 Plus Exam (Late transfer test)?


The 12+/13+ exam is for pupils in Years 7 and 8 who may have narrowly missed out on a grammar school place due to their 11+ exam results. The 12 Plus/13 Plus allows a child more time to prepare (up to 18 months) for the late transfer test. The tests have a strong academic focus on the core subjects and is used by many of the top grammar schools in the UK.


The exam aims to determine a child’s suitability to join a grammar school in Years 8 or 9. Not all schools accept 12+/13+ entry, but those that do, normally do so on the basis of available spaces in those year groups. Spaces can become available if there are too few applicants for the number of vacancies that year, or if children consequently leave those year groups during term time.


Grammar schools tend to have a larger intake of students at 11 Plus level than at 12+/13+. In some instances, there may be as little as 2 or 3 available places at 12 Plus / 13 Plus, so it’s important to set your child’s expectations as part of their preparation.


What Does the 12+/13+ Exam Involve?

Boy in red T shirt studying in the classroom

The exam tests ability in the core subjects: English, Maths and Reasoning


Every school has a slightly different exam structure, but generally, children are tested on their abilities in the core subjects of Maths, English and Reasoning.


Studying for the 12 Plus/13 Plus Exam


We’ve already written an in-depth guide to helping your child revise for exams, but to provide a summary, we’d recommend:


  • Starting revision early so that any gaps in your child’s knowledge can be identified and improved.
  • Agreeing a study timetable with your child so that they feel involved in the process of studying.
  • Studying little but often. The average 12-year-old has an attention span of around 30 minutes, so be sure not to overdo it.
  • Use a variety of different studying methods based on the three main learning styles (auditory, visual and kinaesthetic). For example, you could try a combination of flashcards, listening exercises and presentations to provide variety.



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7+, 8+, 9+, 10+, 11+, 13+

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Welcome! Thank you for visiting our site and taking the time to read this post.  Our intention is for this blog to become an invaluable source of useful information, insight and advice about the ins and outs of 7+, 8+, 9+, 10+, 11+ and 13+ examinations.


Here at Exam Papers Plus, we are fortunate to have built up a great network of educators, teachers and assessors with decades of combined experience. This blog will draw on this priceless pool of knowledge and share it with you all!


For too long, we believe, the whole examination process has been shrouded in obscurity and ambiguity. Furthermore, the competition for places at top schools has grown considerably over the years. This has made life difficult and stressful for all involved, not least the poor children who have to sit the exams! We intend to change this.


We want to empower you by equipping you with a thorough understanding of the requirements of each type of exam and explaining how you can efficiently and successfully prepare your child to grasp their opportunity and flourish under difficult conditions. A little knowledge and preparation can go a long way!


Future articles on this blog will include:


–       Interviews with assessors and examiners.

–       Interviews with parents who have successfully navigated their way through the whole process.

–       Actual past papers from previous exams at all age levels.

–       Advice about how to motivate your child and deal with stress.

–       Syllabus requirements for all ages and subjects.

–       Advice about dealing with interviews, including past questions.

–       Plenty more helpful hints and tips.

–       Reviews of individual schools and their requirements.


We always love to hear from our readers and customers so please don’t hesitate to get in touch if you have any queries or questions, we are a friendly bunch! Similarly, if you have a suggestion for a blog post or if you would like to contribute an article yourself, let us know and we can work together to make it happen.


That’s it for now. Have a cup of tea and relax. You’re in safe hands.


The ‘Exam Papers Plus’ team