The Kent 11+ (11 plus) Exam: How to prepare your child for success!

This article explains everything you need to know about the 11+ Kent Test, including:

  • A complete breakdown of the actual exam timings and question types
  • Sample Kent 11+ questions for all subjects
  • Expert tips and suggestions on how to prepare your child to pass the test with flying colours!

What is the Kent Test?


The Kent Test is an examination used to assess whether Year 7 grammar school entry is a suitable option for your child. It is used by most, but not all, of the 35 wholly selective and 4 partially selective grammar schools in the region. Click here to view a list of the schools that use the 11+ Kent Test as part of their Year 7 admissions process.


When is the Kent Test taken?


The Kent exam is taken by students at the beginning of Year 6, in September. The exam usually takes place in the first two weeks of the month.


How many candidates take the Kent Test?


Unfortunately, there are far more applications than places available at Kent grammar schools. Between 14,000 and 17,000 students take the exam every year. The demand for places and number of applicants tends to increase annually.


What is covered in the Kent Test?


The examination consists of three separate assessments:


Section 1: This exam is 1 hour long and tests Reasoning. It is broken into three shorter sections addressing Verbal Reasoning, Spatial Reasoning and Non-Verbal Reasoning.


Section 2: This exam is 1 hour long and tests English and Mathematics.


Section 3: A writing task of 40 minutes, including 10 minutes of planning time. This is not marked and only used by Headteachers in borderline assessment cases.


Sections 1 and 2 of the Kent Test are multiple-choice examinations. Each question will have 5 answer choices and your child will need to mark their responses on a separate answer sheet. Your child will need to draw a line through the correct answer on a grid like this:


Kent 11 Plus Test Answer Grid


What is Verbal Reasoning and how is it tested in the Kent 11+ exam?


Verbal Reasoning questions can contain words, letters and numbers and assess the relationship amongst and between them.


The Kent 11 plus Verbal Reasoning assessment begins with a timed 10-minute practice section. This will be followed by a 20-minute Verbal Reasoning exam. There will be roughly 32 questions in this section, which means students will have around 40 seconds to answer each question. Speed is, therefore, of the essence!


The Verbal Reasoning exam will contain various different question types. For example, it may contain 4 different types of VR problems, each tested with 8 questions.


Here are a few example 11+ Verbal Reasoning questions:


11+ Verbal Reasoning Question 1

11 plus Verbal Reasoning Question 211 plus Kent Verbal Reasoning Question 3Kent 11 plus Verbal Reasoning Questions 4


What is Non-Verbal Reasoning and how is it tested in the Kent 11+ exam?


Non-Verbal Reasoning questions assess the relationships between shapes, such as their similarities, differences and sequence.


The Kent 11 plus exam contains a series of short NVR tests, each lasting 4-5 minutes. There will most likely be 3 short NVR subtests in total. Each subtest will focus on a different question type and be preceded by an untimed practice section. There will be 8-10 questions in each section, so your child will have roughly 30 seconds to answer each question.


Becoming familiar with the question types beforehand is the key to success. We’ve included a few sample questions below:



how to prepare for kent 11 plus NVR section



Kent NVR exam test question 11 plus




11+ Kent Sample Test Question Non-Verbal Reasoning


Odd One Out

11+ Kent Sample Non-Verbal Reasoning Question


What is Spatial Reasoning and how is it tested in the Kent 11+ exam?


Spatial Reasoning assesses how well a student can manipulate shapes and space in their head.


The 11+ Kent Test contains a series of short Spatial Reasoning tests, each lasting 4-5 minutes. There will probably be 2 Spatial Reasoning subtests. Each of them will focus on a different type of skill and will have an untimed practice section preceding it. There will be between 8 and 10 questions in each subtest, giving the student about 30 seconds to answer each question.


Below you will find an example of each of the two main Spatial Reasoning question types that may be used in the Kent 11 plus test:


Figure Recognition

11+ Kent Spatial Reasoning Sample Question


Figure Analysis

Kent 111 plus Test Sample Spatial Reasoning Test


How is Mathematics tested in the 11 plus Kent test?


The Maths test in the Kent 11+ exam is 25 minutes long and is preceded by a 5-minute practice section. It will most likely contain 25 questions, so your child will have 1 minute to answer each question. The test will cover topics learnt up to the beginning of Year 6 but will also contain a series of more trickier problems.


Here are a few sample Maths questions that are at the Kent 11+ standard:


Kent 11 plus Maths Sample Question


11 plus Kent Maths Sample Question 2



Maths 11 plus Kent Sample


How is English tested in the 11 plus Kent test?


The English test begins with a 5-minute practice section followed by a 25-minute exam. The test will most likely contain 24 or 25 questions, so your child will roughly have 1 minute to answer each question.


The Kent 11+ English exam will contain a short reading comprehension. Your child will need to read a passage and answer a series of questions based on it. There will also be questions that test Cloze skills, where the student must choose which word best completes a sentence, as well as questions that test spelling, punctuation and grammar.


Here are a few sample 11+ Kent style English questions:

11 plus English Kent Exam sample Questions

What can I do to help my child pass the Eleven Plus Kent Test?


As with most things in life, practice makes perfect! The Kent exam is time pressured and the key to doing well is answering the questions quickly and accurately. The best way to increase speed and accuracy is to familiarise your child with the content of the test and the various question types they will have to deal with. This way, they will approach the exam with confidence as they will know what to expect and what is expected of them.


How can Exam Papers Plus help?


We produce highly accurate and effective exam practice papers and have an excellent track record in helping children succeed in their 11+ exams. Our range of tried and tested resources will help your child ace the Kent 11 plus exam!

Keep reading for our specialist recommendations.


Recommendations: Verbal Reasoning

We’ve created 3 Verbal Reasoning Packs that each contain 4 full-length practice papers. These include examples of all the various different question types that could come up in the Kent 11+ Test. The practice tests are timed (equating to 40 seconds per question) so your child can get used to dealing with these types of questions under time pressure, just like they will need to in the Kent examination. Answers included. Available for immediate download so you can start your preparation right away.


Click on these packs to learn more and buy:


11+ Verbal Reasoning Pack 1. Ideal Practice for GL Assessment VR exams, including the 11 plus Kent Test. GL Assessment style Grammar School 11+ exams   11 plus Verbal Reasoning Exam Practice Papers   


Recommendations: Non-Verbal Reasoning

We’ve created a Non-Verbal Reasoning Pack that contains 3 full-length practice papers. This pack covers all of the question types that could come up in the Kent 11+ Test. The practice tests are timed (equating to 30 seconds per question) and broken down into small sections, exactly like in the Kent Test. Answers and answer sheets of the same style as in the Kent Test are included. Available for immediate download so you can start your preparation right away.


Click on the pack below to learn more and buy:


11+ practice NVR papers for GL Assessment and Independent School examinations


Recommendations: Mathematics

We have 3 Mathematics packs that contain multiple-choice questions similar to those found in the Kent 11 plus exam. Each pack contains 4 full-length exam papers that use the same timing per question (1 minute) as the actual exam. Answers included. You can purchase, download and start using these papers today.


Click on these packs to learn more and buy:


11+ Grammar School Exam Mathematics Papers with Answers    11+ Maths Practice Papers for Grammar School, ideal for Kent 11+ Maths Practice   11+ Mathematics Grammar School exams


We also have a pack specifically focused around Problem Solving. This pack contains 100 questions that cover the most common types of word problems that come up in the 11+ Kent exam. Answer sheets are also included so your child can get used to marking their answers like they will need to do so in the actual exam.


Click on this pack to learn more and buy:


Recommendations: English

We offer 3 expertly crafted packs that each contain 4 full-length exam papers. Not only do our papers use the same timing per question (1 minute) as the actual Kent exam but they also cover all of the question types that appear in the real thing: Comprehension, Cloze, Punctuation, Spelling and Grammar. Answers included. Available for download immediately after purchase.


Click on these packs to learn more and buy:


11+ Grammar Schools English Practice Papers    Kent 11 plus examinations English sample practice papers    11+ GL-style English Exam Papers


We also have a pack specifically focused around Spelling in a multiple-choice format. This pack contains exercises to help your child to learn how to spell 200 words that frequently appear in 11+ Grammar School exams. Each word is tested within context so your child will not only learn how to spell the word but also examples of how they can be used within different contexts.


Click on this pack to learn more and buy:

eleven plus exams spelling


The Kent test also assesses Punctuation and Sentence Completion in a multiple-choice format. The following packs are specifically designed to help with this. Click on each image to learn more.


   11+ GL Cloze questions


Recommendations: 11+ Kent Practice Tests

There’s no doubt that taking full practice tests is one of the most effective ways of preparing for the Kent 11+ exam. Therefore, not only do we provide the subject specific preparation materials mentioned above, we have also produced three exclusive full-length Kent Mock exams that cover all areas of the test.


The key benefits of our 11+ Kent Practice Tests include:


  • Specifically produced for the Kent 11+ exam and exclusively available through Exam Papers Plus
  • All subject and topic areas covered: English, Maths and Verbal, Non-Verbal and Spatial Reasoning
  • Replicates the actual examination experience with timed sections designed to match the Kent Test timings
  • Timed and untimed practice sections before each main test designed according to the Kent Test specifications
  • Multiple-choice response sheets included so your child can get accustomed to filling in their answers quickly and accurately
  • Answers included
  • Available for download and printing immediately after purchase. Gain access and start preparing today!

11+ Kent Practice Test 1

11+ Kent Practice Test 2

11+ Kent Practice Test 3


Note: We are currently offering a special deal where you can save over £75 on our 11+ Kent Test preparation bundle. This bundle contains a complete set of resources that will help your child efficiently and comprehensively prepare for every element of the 11+ Kent Test. These resources have been successfully used by countless families to prepare for the exam. Feel free to read the reviews on the individual products to see what other parents are saying.


To take advantage of this special offer, simply add all of the resources mentioned in this article to your basket and then enter the coupon kentdeal at checkout to have a £75 (over 30%) discount applied to your purchase!


Our 11+ Kent bundle is designed to maximise your child’s potential and give them the edge over the competition!


If you have any questions or concerns, don’t hesitate to get in touch. We are always happy to help and advise!


If you want to receive updates on the Kent 11 plus test and alerts on new product releases, subscribe to our mailing list at the bottom of this page.


Thanks for reading!


The Exam Papers Plus Team


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