St. Colman’s College PPTC Transfer Test (11 Plus) Information



Founded in 1823, St. Colman’s College is a Catholic grammar school for boys aged 11 to 18. Located in Newry, County Armagh, St. Colman’s College is well-known for producing Gaelic footballers for local teams in the area.


The College consistently reports good academic achievements and offers its students a wide range of extracurricular activities, including sport, music, drama and debates. In line with the college ethos, the school is committed to nurturing the personal, social, spiritual and moral development of each student in its care.


For an insight into student life at St. Colman’s College, watch this short promotional video:



Transfer Test Information for St. Colman’s College


Address: Violet Hill, 46 Armagh Road, Newry, BT35 6PP
Admissions Info:, 02830 262 451

School Type: Boys’ Grammar

Number of pupils: 900 (approx.)

Number of Places in Year 8: 125 (approx.)

Open Night Dates: December / January

Exam Date: November/December

Exam Board Type: GL Assessment


St. Colman’s College Admissions


In the absence of new legislation being passed by the Northern Ireland Assembly to replace the previous 11+ transfer system, many post primary schools in Northern Ireland have decided to continue with academic selection. Thirty-four schools currently make up the Post Primary Transfer Consortium (PPTC), an unregulated system that uses the same standardised entrance assessment to determine admission.


As a member of the Consortium, entry to St. Colman’s College is determined by student performance in the PPTC Transfer Test. In cases where there are more applicants than available places, the school uses the following oversubscription criteria, giving priority to:


  • Boys who have a parent/guardian who is a member of the permanent teaching, administrative, or ancillary staff of St. Colman’s College
  • Boys who have another boy of the family attending the College or having been selected for admission to the College
  • Boys who have had another boy of the family previously attend the College
  • Boys whose father/guardian attended the College
  • Boys who are the first boy of the family to transfer to secondary education, i.e. the eldest boy
  • Boys who are the first boy of the family to apply to a grammar school
  • Boys who are entitled to Free School Meals
  • Other boys ranked by date of birth with the youngest boy admitted first and all other boys admitted by age (youngest first) until all places have been filled


For more information on the admissions process or oversubscription criteria at St. Colman’s College, contact the school directly at or call 02830 262 451.


How to Apply for Year 8 Entry to St. Colman’s College


The school hosts open nights in December and January and encourages prospective students and their parents to attend before submitting an application. At these events, parents can learn more about the admissions process and have an opportunity to tour the school and speak to staff.


Parents can register on behalf of their child via the College’s website or the PPTC’s website. If you have any questions regarding the form, these helpful guidance notes should give clarification.


After the close of the registration period, all applicants will be assigned a designated Assessment Centre. The Centre assigned for the Entrance Assessment has no bearing upon the choice of schools.


St. Colman’s College Grammar School Transfer Test Format


The St. Colman’s College Transfer Test is set by GL Assessment. To be in with a chance of gaining a place at the school, children must sit two test papers – Maths and English.


All questions are multiple-choice and each assessment paper is split into two parts: a Practice Assessment and a Main Assessment. The Practice Assessment is intended to provide children with an opportunity to familiarise themselves with the style of questions in the Main Assessment.


Maths Paper


The mathematics assessment paper begins with a Practice Assessment comprising of three familiarisation questions and six practice questions. The Main Assessment is made up of 45 minutes lasts for 45 minutes.


English Paper


The English assessment paper begins with a Practice Assessment comprising of a short reading passage with three familiarisation questions (comprehension) and seven practice questions (four spelling and three punctuation) which takes about 20 minutes to complete.


The Main Assessment is made up of 60 questions and lasts for 50 minutes. The paper has three reading passages, each of which is followed by a number of comprehension questions. There are also a number of spelling questions and punctuation questions. The paper finishes with some general questions. Sixty percent of the marks are for the comprehension questions which follow the reading passages and forty percent of the marks are for the spelling, punctuation and general questions.


Scores for both papers are age standardised and results are posted to parents in January.


More information on the content of the test papers can be found on the PPTC website.


How to Prepare for the St. Colman’s College 11 plus (11+) Transfer Test?


Understandably, students might be apprehensive about sitting the eleven plus transfer test for St. Colman’s College. Our practice papers, which are available for immediate download, offer excellent practice and thorough preparation. The papers cover all the key skills that children must apply to the test and they can also be used to identify any weaker areas that require additional work ahead of the exam.


To prepare for St. Colman’s College transfer test, we would recommend using the following practice papers:



Full Practice Tests

Skill specific practice




Full Practice Tests

Skill specific practice




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Our practice tests aim to show what sort of questions were included in St. Colman’s College 11+ past papers. The information provided about St. Colman’s College 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.

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