Due to the stress of the exam, a lot of students fail to see common sense and end up making preventable mistakes. Here are some simple tips that can help you avoid disastrous errors in your 11+ papers.
Even though your 11+ exams consist of four widely different disciplines, — English, Maths, verbal reasoning and nonverbal reasoning — they can all be approached in much the same way. Here’s how:
Attempt Past Papers
If you do not adequately prepare yourself before the 11+ exams, you won’t be able to answer the questions in your test easily. One of the best ways to get ready for the exam is to practice past papers. Most teachers will get you started on these in class, and the papers will also be available online.
However, their point is not to answer specific questions, but to help a student understand the format and structure of the test, how to approach the questions, finding out which information will get them more marks, and managing their time.
Read All Questions Carefully
Stress can cause you to misread or misunderstand a question and write the wrong answer. Make sure you set aside ten minutes to read every question on the paper, even though you may not be attempting all the questions. This will help you determine which questions you have the most information about.
Don’t forget to attempt all the questions you have selected; though you should be careful of the MCQs that can result in negative marking.
Structuring your Answer
Don’t just quickly start answering the exam questions. Take a minute to organise the answer in your head and structure it so that you stay on topic, and not forget to add the information-rich parts. This will prevent you from wasting time.
For example, English compositions usually have an introduction, three main paragraphs and a conclusion. A strong, impactful conclusion can be the difference between getting a shining A grade.
Review Your Answers
Don’t be in a hurry to hand over your paper before you have a chance to review all your answers. Go back to the start and read through all your answers to see if you have made any grammatical or spelling errors or if you missed a crucial point. You will be surprised how many tiny mistakes you can fix by reviewing your test paper.
Above all, make sure you assign a realistic time limit to each question before you start your exam. Once the time limit to a specific question expires, you need to move on to the next question, even if you have not finished answering the previous question. If not, you run the risk of not completing your paper on time.
Remember to assign some time at the end so that you have the chance to go back and answer the incomplete questions. Time management is crucial in 11+ exams.
Don’t let yourself freeze during the exam day. Keep telling yourself that you know how to answer the question and you will be finished with the paper before you know it.