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Latest Selective School Test Scoring Changes

The Selective School test in New South Wales has undergone some massive changes since early 2021.  Dramatic updates for both the scoring system and test syllabus have taken place affecting all gifted and talented students hoping for a spot in opportunity classes and selective schools. This system offers Opportunity Classes for academically gifted Year 5 and Year 6 kids, and Selective high schools designed for students from year 7 and above.

These schools have a special curriculum designed to foster academically advanced students who have high potential but are stuck in average learning environments. They often lack motivation studying in environments where they are not challenged intellectually. These students usually never flourish in learning environments where their capacities exceed the standard learning curriculum in average primary school and high school institutions in Australia.

Selective schools are integral for academically accelerated students to learn with ease by grouping them with other students who have similar abilities. The teaching methods are specially designed to accommodate and encourage their intellectual capacity. These students get exposed to specialized educational materials and classes which are not found in regular Australian schools. Some of the top Selective high schools that students usually compete for in New South Wales are James Ruse Agricultural High School, Baulkham Hills High School, North Sydney Boys High School, and Hornsby Girls High School.

Students who want to join selective schools are usually required to take Selective School examinations in year 6 to determine if they have the skills and knowledge to attend these schools. These Selective School tests are highly competitive and assess students at an extremely accelerated level.

The selective high schools admit entry to the students who pass according to their respective criteria. The students who score higher in the Selective tests are grouped together in the selective school. At the school, they are taken through specialized resources and teaching methods that stimulate and match their intellectual capacities and abilities. This is why the committee of the High Performing Students Team administers placement tests every year for year 6 students who wish to be admitted to a selective high school. These tests are used to measure the abilities of the students in mathematics, writing, reading comprehension, and general intellectual ability. Some selective high schools specializing in the art may form this as part of the student’s application.

To apply to a selective high school, parents and students are expected to provide a maximum of three top schools of choice. The schools should be listed in order of priority. If the student qualifies for more than one school, they will be placed at the school which appears first on their priority list. It is therefore important to list the preferred schools according to the student’s priority because changes can never be made once the online application is submitted and once the test results are out. However, if you would like to change your choice of schools, you can email the High Performing Students Team.

selective school student studying
mathematical reasoning school chalkboard

Students who wish to take the Selective school exams should remember that many students are gifted, and that’s why they need to prepare for the tests well to maximize their chances to get better results in the Selective high school placement test. During the test, you will be subjected to the pressure of having to complete four exam areas in a maximum of two hours and twenty minutes. This is why you need to familiarize yourself with the testing process. If you are not familiar with the process, you might find it hard to pace yourself. You should know that 20 minutes are allocated for the essay writing and the rest of the areas are tested for 40 minutes each. The math test has 40 questions, the reading test 45, while the thinking skills has 40 questions.

Before enrolling your kids for the selective school tests, it is important to first enroll them through a selective school preparation course to challenge their mental faculties while reigniting their love and interest in learning. Finding the right preparation course that will get your child into an academic program that will maximize his/her growth and potential is very important.

While the questions from the preparation courses may not be the same ones as in the tests, you will be able to have an idea of how to handle the questions. Depending on the coaching centre you choose for your selective preparation course, the questions you prepare with may be easier or harder than the selective exam. Additionally, by constantly timing yourself during the preparation courses, you will be better at time management, allowing you to handle the time constraints during the actual tests.

To prepare well for the maths exams, you need to understand the basic operations, basic math concepts, and the multiplication table. Students who dread maths have been found to have prior struggles with their basic foundation of maths. Work on the basic mathematics concepts as you move to more complex concepts. Make a fun activity out of online logic tests which include verbal reasoning, numerical reasoning, and abstract reasoning.

The writing tests usually start with a stimulus topic. This could be an image, a statement, or a question that you need to answer. Your grading is done based on your language use, organization of ideas, and the quality and depth of your thought. Quick tip, while preparing for your writing exams, you are also preparing for your reading exams. You can prepare for both by frequently reading short stories, novels, editorial articles, anthologies, and essays.

Take note of the word used from these reading materials and look up the meanings of the vocabulary you don’t understand. You can also practice by writing essays on your opinion on popular headlines and have someone crosscheck them for you. Get an adult, preferably a tutor or your teacher to supervise your selective school preparation and mock exams to get valuable advice and feedback. You might even ask them some tips and strategies to pass the Selective school exams.

students studying in school

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