13+ English Common Entrance 

About 13+ English for Common Entrance

The Exam

For the 13+ English Common Entrance exam, children will sit two exams, each of which has both a reading and writing section. There are two levels for each paper; most pupils sit Level 2 which is the standard paper. 

Paper 1

  • Section A: Reading – children are given an unseen passage of literary prose from a novel, play, (auto)biography or travel piece. The passage is followed by questions which test candidates' understanding, analysis and evaluation as a comprehension exercise. Passages may be abridged (shortened, with difficult words explained) for Level 1 

  • Section B: Writing – children are given a choice of five non-fiction essay titles, from which they must select one to write about and demonstrate their ability to write for a practical purpose 

Paper 2

  • Section A: Reading – children are given an unseen poem followed by a series of questions to test their poetic technique and personal response 

  • Section B: Writing – children are required to write an imaginative or descriptive response to one essay title from a choice of four 

How can you help?

Preparing for 13+ exams can seem quite daunting; however, you can make a real difference to your child’s likelihood of success by making sure that they know what they will be tested on and ensuring that they feel confident about answering the questions.

There are four main products your son or daughter can work with in the run up to the exams:


1) English for Common Entrance at 13+ Revision Guide

An essential revision resource for pupils working towards English Common Entrance at 13+. A full colour resource which holds the most up-to-date material and exam techniques. Throughout the book you will find revision tips and practical guidance on how to achieve top grades, as well as self- assessment questions to help pupils identify areas that need further study.

2) English for Common Entrance at 13+ Exam Practice Questions

This book provides a wealth of comprehensive practice exercises in the format of the ISEB Common Entrance exam at both Level 1 and 2. A varied selection of texts and poems has been selected to help pupils for the Reading sections of the exam, and there is a large bank of exercises for the Writing sections.

3) English for Common Entrance at 13+ Exam Practice Answers

This book contains answers to all the questions in English for Common Entrance at 13+ Exam Practice Questions, accompanied with extensive advice and guidance to help achieve top marks.



13_English_Paper_2-(2).jpg4) Past Common Entrance Exam Papers

Become familiar with the exam format and timings in order to perfect examination technique

Past 13+ Common Entrance exam papers are available to purchase from Galore Park and will help you and your child to see what is expected in the exam. From there, you will be able to determine any areas that your child needs to work on, to improve his or her exam technique.