Marlborough College is an independent full boarding school for pupils aged 13-18 in Marlborough, Wiltshire. Established in 1843, it is a prestigious school with an impressive legacy, educating pupils in line with the motto Deus dat Incrementum (God gives the increase). Its alumni list includes a Nobel laureate, diplomats and pioneers in science, as well as Catherine, Princess of Wales. 
Upholding its robust academic reputation, Marlborough provides a diverse and comprehensive curriculum. Encompassing a wide array of subjects, from mathematics and humanities to languages and technology, the syllabuses are rooted in the flexibility needed to accommodate a range of interests and foster independent learning among students.
The diverse range of co-curricular clubs and societies empowers students to delve into their non-academic talents, immersing themselves in intellectually stimulating and creative endeavours. With offerings that range from kayaking and mountain biking to the Combined Cadet Force and drama, life on campus is overflowing with enthusiasm, enhancing pupils’ learning experiences to the fullest. 
The College is devoted to delivering exemplary care and support to pupils, ensuring their success across all stages of their education and facilitating their development and prosperity as individuals. The goal is to equip the cohort with the necessary tools to navigate academic life effectively while also preparing them for a happy and successful future. Pastorally, there is a strong commitment to cultivating healthy attitudes towards both physical and mental well-being, ensuring that students recognise the importance of being both emotionally intelligent and intellectually resilient. 
Recently, 71% of GCSE results were grade 7 or higher. This achievement not only reflects the efficacy of the school’s educational strategies but also ensures that the College’s leavers are well-prepared to further their education at prestigious universities. There, they continue to exemplify Marlborough’s robust academic and ethical principles, confirming the consistently impressive evaluations in the school’s ISI reports.
Marlborough College 13 Plus (13+) Entry Admissions Process
Marlborough hosts Open Days in the Summer Term for prospective pupils in Year 4 or 5 whose families made an initial enquiry. Attending these events provides an ideal opportunity to tour the facilities and meet key members of staff, including the admissions team. There is also an opportunity to view a boarding house. The school hosts House Visit Days in the Autumn and Summer Term for prospective pupils in Year 5, offering families the chance to view boarding houses and have a pupil-led tour. Furthermore, individual visits can be arranged. Click here to book.
Registration for a place should typically be completed by early October of Year 6 or, in some circumstances, Year 7. The registration fee of £300 is non-refundable.
Your child will then receive an invitation to attend Admissions Day in the Autumn Term. This includes a tour of the school, an address from the Head and current pupils, and meetings with members of the senior management team.
As part of the 13+ admissions process, your child will be asked to sit an online assessment known as the ISEB Pre-test.
Following this, they will be asked to come to the school for Assessment Day in the Spring Term, which will include two short writing tasks, an interview with a Housemaster or Housemistress, an interview with a boarding house tutor and informal group activities. For 13+ entry, a reference from your child’s current Head will also be reviewed.
Places are offered later in the Spring Term, to be secured with a payment of a deposit. Please note that, while in Year 8, your child will also be asked to sit Common Entrance examinations (for setting purposes). However, successful Academic scholarship candidates do not have to sit these exams.
Scholarships in the following areas are available to 13+ applicants:
– Design Technology
– Academic ability
Due to high demand, the school offers Sports Awards for a pupil’s initial year at the College. Following this period, selected students will be granted scholarships. The assessment procedure includes a review of a reference from your child’s sports teacher or coach.
For Art and DT scholarships, the assessment process includes a review of a digital portfolio. Drama and Music scholarship applicants will attend an audition, while Academic scholarships are offered based on performance in rigorous scholarship examinations.
The bursary programme at Marlborough College can cover 5-100% of tuition fees and may also offer financial assistance for additional costs, such as academic trips, IT equipment and uniform. Please note that the completed and signed Financial Circumstances Form must be submitted by the beginning of July in the Summer Term of Year 5 or Year 6. To learn more, click here.
Marlborough College 13 Plus (13+) ISEB Pre-test Information
Address: Bath Road, Marlborough SN8 1PA
Admissions info: [email protected] or +44 (0)1672 892300
School type: Independent co-ed boarding school
Open events: Autumn and Summer Term
Pre-test exam date: Autumn Term of Year 6 / Autumn or Spring Term of Year 7
Marlborough College refers to the Autumn Term as Michaelmas Term and the Spring Term as Lent Term.
To join in Year 9, your child will be asked to complete an online assessment called the ISEB Common Pre-test, which assesses skills in Maths, English, Verbal Reasoning and Non-Verbal Reasoning. The test provides a universal and standardised measure of attainment, ability and potential.
Marlborough College 13 Plus (13+) ISEB Pre-test Exam Format
The ISEB Pre-test assessment comprises the following areas:
⦿ English – evaluates reading comprehension and grammar (using cloze sentences, shuffled sentences and SPaG question types)
⦿ Mathematics – measures mathematical ability relative to the national curriculum stage
⦿ Verbal Reasoning – tests thinking and problem solving with words
⦿ Non-Verbal Reasoning – assesses thinking with shapes, space, diagrams and pictures
In total, the four parts of the ISEB Common Pre-test take 2 hours and 15 minutes to administer and complete. There is no audio component to any of the tests.
FAQs About the Marlborough College 13 Plus (13+) ISEB Pre-test
Do I need to register my child for the Marlborough College 13+ ISEB Pre-test?
Yes, registrations for the pre-test are completed through the official ISEB website.
Where can my child sit the Marlborough College 13+ ISEB Pre-test?
If your child attends a Prep School, the 13+ ISEB Pre-test can be sat there. If your child attends a state-funded school, alternative arrangements can be made.
Will older pupils have an advantage in the Marlborough College 13+ ISEB Pre-test?
No, the ISEB Pre-test is age-standardised so students are not disadvantaged by their age when they sit the test.
How many times can my child take the Marlborough College 13+ ISEB Pre-test?
The ISEB 13+ Pre-test can only be sat once.
Marlborough College 13 Plus (13+) ISEB Pretest Practice Materials
At Pretest Plus, we believe that a little preparation can go a long way to improving a student’s confidence and performance in entrance examinations.
We provide online practice tests, video courses and skill-specific tests which focus on helping students familiarise themselves with the exact types of questions that they will be asked in their ISEB Pre-test assessment. Read on to learn more!
Marlborough College 13+ ISEB Pretest Mock Tests
These full mock tests are designed to provide your child with highly accurate practice ahead of their ISEB Pre-test assessment. Each practice test covers English, Maths, Verbal Reasoning and Non-Verbal Reasoning, replicating the modules, timings and question types used in the actual exam.
Each test contains unique content, but they are all pitched at the same difficulty level as the actual assessment. This means you can easily benchmark your child’s progress as they work through the practice tests, quickly identifying their strengths and weaknesses.
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Marlborough College 13+ ISEB Pretest Video Courses
We’ve also produced online video courses that cover everything your child needs to know for each section of the ISEB Pre-test assessment. These courses consist of a series of lessons that detail each question type, providing step-by-step explanations and techniques to help your child recognise the underlying patterns to look out for. The courses cover every possible question type that could come up in the ISEB Pre-test.
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Marlborough College 13+ ISEB Pretest Skill Practice Tests
Our Skill Practice products consist of focused tests that allow your child to target specific question formats that appear in the ISEB Pre-test. They are an efficient way to improve skills and boost scores quickly. All tests are marked automatically and feedback, solutions and statistical rankings are provided upon completion.
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Marlborough College 13+ ISEB Pre-test Preparation Tips
Preparing effectively for the Marlborough College 13+ ISEB Pre-test can significantly enhance a student’s confidence and exam performance. Here are some Pretest Plus Preparation Tips for the Marlborough College ISEB Pre-test:
1. Adapt to the digital assessment environment:
Since the ISEB Pre-test is administered online, ensuring your child is comfortable with computer use is crucial. This will enable them to smoothly switch between digital tasks and written workings.
2. Become familiar with the ISEB Pre-test structure:
To achieve the best possible outcome in the exam, your child needs to understand the ISEB Pre-test format thoroughly. Our precise and accurate practice tests replicate the actual online exam, providing a detailed example of the real test’s challenges.
3. Sharpen time management abilities:
Using our preparation materials will allow your child to practise answering questions within pre-set time limits, ensuring they manage each question efficiently on the day of the actual assessment.
4. Review and learn from mistakes:
After completing a mock test, it is crucial for your child to analyse their mistakes, ensuring that they don’t repeat them in the actual exam.
The information in this post was believed to be correct at the time of publishing. However, please be aware of possible future changes. We advise you to contact the school directly if you are unsure of anything. School contact details are provided within the post.
Please note that Pretest Plus is an independent publisher of practice tests and not affiliated with or endorsed by the publishers of the ISEB Common Pre-test or any other pre-test publisher.
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