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St Mary’s School, Cambridge, 11 Plus (11+) Entrance Exam Information


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St Mary’s School is an independent girls’ day and boarding school, located within walking distance of Cambridge city centre. Founded in 1898 by the sisters of the Venerable Mary Ward and the Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the school is run in the Catholic tradition.


Pupils benefit from a broad and challenging curriculum, which covers art, science, classical civilisation, computing, drama, English, food & nutrition, MFL, games & PE, geography, history, Latin, Mandarin Chinese, mathematics, music, PSHE, religious education and DT.


Enrichment activities at St Mary’s aim at satisfying a wide range of interests. Girls engage in rowing, athletics, pilates, yoga and many other sporting opportunities, further developing their talents through after-class clubs such as Model United Nations, Time Travellers (History), Japanese and Religious Studies Film Club.


Noted for its first-class and innovative academic education, St Mary’s actively encourages intellectual curiosity and promotes collaboration between girls. In return, they leave school with a sense of worth and the qualities of courage and resilience, engaging with the outside world with a strong sense of responsibility towards others.


St Mary’s School, Cambridge, 11 Plus (11+) Exam Information


Address: Bateman Street, Cambridge CB2 1LY

County: Cambridgeshire 

Admissions info: or +44 (0)1223 224 167

School type: Independent, day and boarding school for girls

Number of students: 650 (approx.)

Open days: In the Spring and Autumn Terms

11+ Exam date: January of Year 6

11+ Exam type / Board: Online test (CEM Select) and School’s own


Open Events for St Mary’s School, Cambridge, 11 plus (11+) Entry


The upcoming Open Morning is set to take place in October. You and your child will have the opportunity to get a feel for school life and meet with key staff and pastoral teams. More details about how to book are available here.


St Mary’s School, Cambridge, 11 Plus (11+) Admissions


Entry into Year 7 is based on an entrance exam, an interview with a senior staff member and a current school report and/or reference. The 11 plus exam will take place at the end of January. 


The deadline for registrations is in the December of the year preceding entry. Registration forms can be accessed online.


Offers of places must be accepted by the first Monday in March by paying a deposit, refundable once your daughter leaves the school.


St Mary’s School, Cambridge, 11 Plus (11+) Scholarships and Bursaries


Scholarships are usually valued at 5% of day fees, but can cover up to 20% in exceptional circumstances. The deadline for applications is in December of the year preceding entry.


Academic Scholarships are awarded to top-performing applicants in a 30-minute essay-based paper and an interview with the Scholars’ Officer. Unlike the others, applications for this award are not made until your child joins Year 7.


STEM Scholarships are awarded to applicants who are enthusiastic about Science and Mathematics.


Art Scholarship applicants will be expected to demonstrate artistic talent and creativity, and have a strong commitment to the subject. They will be evaluated on the basis of a portfolio and/or sketchbook of recent artwork.


St Mary’s also awards Scholarships for Creative writing, Dance, Design & Enterprise, Drama, Music, Sports and Textiles.


The Mary Ward award is offered to applicants with particular interest in spirituality, religion, work for justice, charity, chaplaincy and community. Mary Ward scholars typically assist with liturgy (services) and assemblies, engage in the activities of the school’s charity committee, represent the school at events and take active part in charity fundraising. 


Applicants for this award should submit a letter of application and attend an interview with the Director of Christian Life and the Chaplain. 


An application form for scholarships can be accessed here.


Means-tested bursaries, awarded at the discretion of the Head, are reviewed annually with the expectation that they will decrease over time. In this way, more applicants can benefit from the school’s bursary fund.


Also, existing families who had suffered an unexpected hardship, will be prioritised over new applicants. 


The value of bursaries ranges from 5% of tuition fees to 100%. To apply for a bursary, you should complete the relevant application form and include full details about income and assets. Click here for more details.


St Mary’s School, Cambridge, 11 Plus (11+) Exam Format


The St Mary’s School, Cambridge, 11+ exam consists of:


  • An Online Test: CEM Select
  • An English paper: Essay


The online test (CEM Select) assesses Verbal, Non-Verbal and Numerical Ability through a series of short, online modules. 


The English paper examines writing skills, including spelling, vocabulary and punctuation. Marks will be awarded for good use of imagination, creativity, form, purpose, organisation, cohesion and sentence structure.


Please see below for further details and recommendations on how to prepare for the St Mary’s School, Cambridge, 11+ entrance examination.


How to Prepare for the St Mary’s School, Cambridge, 11 Plus (11+) Exam


To prepare your daughter successfully for the St Mary’s School, Cambridge, 11+ entrance exam, we suggest that you make use of our targeted resources. Our practice tests enable familiarisation with the types of questions and the format of the actual exam, which will help your daughter gain confidence in the lead up to the big day.


With the use of our practice tests, you will be able to precisely identify your daughter’s strengths and weaknesses, which will guide you in devising a carefully thought-out revision plan that focuses on studying ‘little and often’.


Moreover, our practice tests will help your daughter get used to answering questions quickly and under time pressure. 


Our thoroughly researched and up to date resources enable a structured approach towards exam preparation that results in a significant advantage over other candidates. 


Due to their practicality and effectiveness, our practice tests are used successfully by tens of thousands of students every year. 


Our recommendations to help your child prepare for the St Mary’s School, Cambridge, 11 plus entrance examination can be found below.


St Mary’s School, Cambridge, 11 Plus (11+) Exam Practice Papers


Recommendations for each section of the St Mary’s School, Cambridge, 11 Plus exam can be found below:


CEM Select


The following full practice and skill practice online tests are specifically designed to help students prepare for the CEM Select assessment used by St Mary’s School, Cambridge. These practice tests will help your child become familiar with all the modules covering Verbal, Numerical and Non-Verbal ability:


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


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



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English: Writing paper


We highly recommend the following packs to prepare successfully for the St Mary’s School, Cambridge, 11+ English paper. They will help improve your daughter’s writing skills, including spelling, vocabulary and punctuation:


11+ Complete Writing Guide


11+ Writing Prompts


11+ Rewrite & Improve


11+ Spelling Pack 1


11+ Spelling Pack 2


If you’d like to have your child’s writing assessed and marked, you may be interested in our Writing Marking Service. Please click here to learn more.




11+ Interviews – The Complete Guide



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Our practice tests aim to show what sort of questions were included in St Mary’s School, Cambridge, 11+ past papers. The information provided about St Mary’s School, Cambridge, 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 St Mary’s School, Cambridge:


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

Click here to learn about Year 9 entry via the 13 Plus (13+) Exam

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