St. Louis Grammar School Ballymena PPTC Transfer Test (11 Plus) Information




Originally established in 1924 as a school for girls, in 1970 St. Louis Grammar School Ballymena became co-educational. The school had a fantastic year in 2018, ranking joint first in Northern Ireland for its GCSE results and first for secondary schools for its A-Level performance.


As a Catholic grammar school, St. Louis works with those in the primary and post primary sector through the Ballymena Learning Together learning community. In 2014, it was awarded a substantial grant to improve and extend its facilities, including a modern, dedicated performing arts studio.


For a student perspective on life at St. Louis Grammar School, watch this short video:



Transfer Test Information for St. Louis Grammar School Ballymena


Address: St. Louis Grammar School, Cullybackey Road, Ballymena, BT43 5DW
Admissions Info:, 02825 649 534

School Type: Co-Educational Grammar

Number of pupils: 960 (approx.)

Number of Places in Year 8: 139 (approx.)

Open Day Date: January

Exam Date: November/December

Exam Board Type: GL Assessment


St. Louis Grammar School Ballymena Admissions


St. Louis Grammar School Ballymena is one of the Northern Irish schools that use a selective admission policy for entry into Year 8. It is one of 34 schools to have joined the Post Primary Transfer Consortium (PPTC) in response to the abolition of the previous eleven plus testing system.


Admission to Dominican College is determined by student performance in the PPTC Transfer Test. Should there be more applicants than available places, the school will apply the following oversubscription criteria, giving priority to:


  • Children who have a sibling currently enrolled at the school
  • Children who are the eldest child of the family to be eligible to apply for admission to the school
  • Children eligible for free school meals
  • Children selected on the basis of age with the youngest candidate being selected first


For more information on the St. Louis Grammar School’s admissions process, please contact the school directly via email at, or by telephone on 02825 649 534.


How to Apply for Year 8 Entry to St. Louis Grammar School Ballymena


Parents and prospective pupils are encouraged to attend either of the school’s Open Evenings, which usually take place in January. There will be an opportunity to meet students and teachers and see some of the work from current students.


As all schools within the PPTC use the same entrance assessment, children are only required to be registered for the test once. Parents can apply on behalf of their child using the registration form on the PPTC website. For further information on how to complete the form, parents can refer to the PPTC’s guidance notes.


St. Louis Grammar School Ballymena Transfer Test Format


GL Assessment is the exam board that sets the St. Louis Grammar School Transfer Test. The exam consists of two papers in English and Maths where students are required to answer a series of multiple-choice questions.


Before both papers, students are given a short practice section to help familiarise them with the exam layout.


English Paper


The English paper contains 60 questions and lasts for 50 minutes. Beginning with three reading passages, this comprehension section makes up 60% of the total mark. Students must then answer questions on spelling and punctuation, followed by general questions, which make up the remaining 40% of the total mark of the paper.


Maths Paper


The maths paper contains 45 questions and lasts for 45 minutes. While the majority of the questions are intended to reflect the school curriculum, a few questions will exist to covering areas not within the curriculum, such as elementary logic. These questions exist to assess students’ intuition of mathematical concepts.


Once both test papers are complete, scores for both papers are age standardised and results are posted to parents in January.


Parents and guardians can find more information about the tests via the PPTC website. The website also has a useful FAQs page that relates to the transfer test.


How to Prepare for the St. Louis Grammar School Ballymena 11 Plus (11+) Transfer Test?


As with any exam, it’s best to start revision early. We would advise that students begin by taking a couple of practice exam papers at home to provide an indication of the level they’re currently performing at. Not only do practice papers help to identify strengths and weaknesses, but they help students get used to the exam layout.


As their studying progresses, the practice tests can be re-introduced to see how they’re improving. In the lead up to the exam, we recommend doing timed practice tests so that students get used to answering the questions under exam conditions.


The practice papers that we produce come complete with answers, enabling parents to accurately measure their child’s performance and track their improvements. We have several practice papers that can help students prepare for the St Louis Grammar School Transfer Test:



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. Louis Grammar School Ballymena 11+ past papers. The information provided about St. Louis Grammar School Ballymena 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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