St Mary’s School, Cambridge: Year 7 (11+) Entry Assessment Information

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St Mary’s School, Cambridge is an independent school for girls aged 3-18, with boarding an option from Year 5. The Catholic faith underpins school life at St Mary’s; however, the school welcomes girls of all religions and those from a secular background. Founded in 1898, it promotes the principles that Mary Ward, a pioneer of education for girls, lived by: courage, love, discernment and integrity.


Academically, St Mary’s School has a superb reputation. All staff members are committed to helping pupils develop into independent learners who enjoy the pursuit of knowledge. A broad, creative curriculum makes links between subjects, helping girls to see the relevance of what they are being taught. This forward-thinking approach works, leading to great academic outcomes. In 2023, an impressive 65% of GCSE grades were in the 9-7 range.


Outside of the classroom, thanks to an extensive enrichment programme, girls can enhance their existing skills and take up new pursuits. Activities on offer include rowing, debating, coding and yoga. Getting involved helps girls to build up their confidence and become well-rounded young people.


The happiness of each student is of paramount importance to St Mary’s School, Cambridge. Girls are listened to and know that they are valued. This creates a positive, caring environment in which girls thrive. 


St Mary’s School, Cambridge: Contact Details and Year 7 (11+) Entry Admissions Process


Address of Senior School: Bateman Street, Cambridge, CB2 1LY

County: Cambridgeshire

Admissions info: [email protected] or 01223 224 167 (UK), +44 (0) 1223 224 157 (International)

School type: Catholic independent school for girls

Assessment date: January of Year 6 (the last Saturday in the month)

Entrance assessments: Online test (CEM Select), creative writing exam, interview and Exact screening test


Visiting St Mary’s School is an important first step in the admissions process. It will enable you to understand what the school is like and determine whether it would be a good fit for your daughter. Tours for small groups are held regularly during term time. There are also larger open events and online events. 


Registering your child for a place is the next step. This should be done before the end of the Autumn term of Year 6. You will be required to pay a non-refundable admission fee, which is £100 for day applicants and £150 for boarding applicants. 


St Mary’s School will then contact your child’s current school for a report and reference. These will be reviewed as part of the admissions process. 


Your daughter will attend a pre-assessment tea at St Mary’s, giving her the chance to meet current pupils and other candidates before the formal assessment day. 


On the last Saturday of January in Year 6, your daughter will attend the formal assessment day at St Mary’s School. The assessments will comprise the following:


  • An online test called CEM Select.
  • A 30-minute creative writing assessment.
  • An interview with a senior member of staff.


In addition to this, your daughter will sit an Exact screening test to check her literacy level. It helps to identify any pupils who may be entitled to exam access arrangements for their GCSE exams.


You should find out within a week of the assessments whether your daughter will be offered a place at St Mary’s. You would need to accept or decline any offer by the deadline in March. If you accept an offer, you will need to pay a deposit of £500 for a day place or the equivalent of one term’s fees for a boarding place. This deposit is refundable when your daughter finishes her education at St Mary’s School.


St Mary’s School, Cambridge: Admissions Criteria


To be considered for a place at St Mary’s School, you and your daughter will need to embrace its Roman Catholic ethos. If your daughter has any learning difficulties or a disability, the school will need to be confident it can make any reasonable adjustments that are needed.


In addition to this, your daughter will need to perform well in the assessments to meet the academic criteria for a place in Year 7. She will also need to have an excellent report and reference from her current school. 


Please note that out of all the candidates who meet the above criteria for admission, preference will be given to the following:


  • Practising members of the Roman Catholic Church and/or candidates already at a Roman Catholic School.
  • Practising members of another Christian denomination.
  • Those with a sibling already at St Mary’s School.
  • Those who need to attend a school with exemplary pastoral care due to difficult family or personal circumstances.
  • Those whose mother attended St Mary’s School or another CJ (Congregation of Jesus) School.


St Mary’s School, Cambridge: Scholarships and Bursaries


The following scholarships are available to girls joining in Year 7:


  • Art
  • Creative Writing
  • Dance
  • Design
  • Drama
  • Music
  • Sport


Year 7 awards are usually valid for two years and typically have a one-off fee remission of £500. Applicants may apply for more than two scholarships but will not be awarded more than two with fee remission. 


Scholarships must be applied for by the beginning of December of Year 6.


Bursaries are means-tested, and there are only a limited number available. Priority is given to existing pupils whose financial circumstances have changed. Bursary applications for Year 7 entry need to be submitted by the deadline in October of Year 6. 



St Mary’s School, Cambridge: CEM Select Online Assessment


The online assessment that applicants will take for Year 7 (11+) entry is the CEM Select. It is a test that assesses your child’s Verbal, Non-Verbal and Numerical reasoning. 


  • The Verbal reasoning questions test your child’s vocabulary, including their ability to make sense of what they are reading and make inferences.
  • The Non-Verbal reasoning questions test your child’s ability to recognise shapes and match patterns. Spatial awareness is important in these questions.
  • The Numerical reasoning questions will test your child’s knowledge of mathematical concepts, their ability to manipulate numbers and their problem-solving skills. 


The CEM Select online assessment has the following methods to answer questions, which your child may not have come across before:


  • Drag and drop: this involves using the mouse or trackpad to drag and then drop an answer into the correct place on the computer screen.
  • Auto-complete: this involves starting to type your answer into the space on the screen. If you start typing the correct answer, the computer will finish it for you, meaning you can move on to the next question.
  • Multiple-choice: this involves using the mouse or trackpad to select the correct answer from a group of answer choices.


St Mary’s School, Cambridge: Preparing for the Year 7 (11+) CEM Select Online Assessment


At Pretest Plus, we believe that putting time in to prepare for the formal assessment day at St Mary’s will help a candidate perform to the best of their ability.


Working their way through our CEM Select Practice Tests will help your child be prepared for the CEM Select online assessment in the following ways:


  • They will become familiar with the format of the CEM Select online assessment, which should help to build their confidence and prevent them from feeling nervous of the unknown, leading to a stronger performance on the day.
  • They will get better and better at answering questions quickly and accurately, meaning the time constraints of the actual online assessment should not be an issue for them.
  • They can use the answers and explanations provided with the practice tests to identify any errors they have made and see where they went wrong. This will mean they can avoid making similar errors in the actual test.
  • They will be able to identify any weak areas and then work on them, turning weaknesses into strengths.


St Mary’s School, Cambridge: Year 7 (11+) Entry, CEM Select Online Practice Tests


Our CEM Select practice tests are highly accurate, ensuring that your child’s preparation is targeted and efficient. Read on to learn more! 👇 


St Mary’s School, Cambridge, 11+ Online Practice Tests


These full mock tests are designed to provide your child with highly accurate practice ahead of their CEM Select Assessment. Each practice test covers Verbal, Non-Verbal and Numerical 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.


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 Test 6

CEM Select Practice Test 7

CEM Select Practice Test 8

CEM Select Practice Test 9

CEM Select Practice Test 10


✂️ Save 30% by purchasing our CEM Select Practice Tests Bundle, including all ten tests. Click the button below to learn more:


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Alternatively, click the buttons below to purchase Bundles of five of our CEM Select Practice Tests. You will save 25% compared to buying each product individually.


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St Mary’s School, Cambridge, 11+ Online Skill Practice


Each of our Skill Practice tests is designed to focus on one specific question type that can come up in the CEM Select exam. They are ideal for targeted practice and an efficient way to quickly improve your child’s scores in each topic.


Verbal Ability


CEM Select – Comprehension Pack 1

CEM Select – Comprehension Pack 2

CEM Select – Missing Words Pack 1

CEM Select – Missing Words Pack 2

CEM Select – Related Words

CEM Select – Anagrams

CEM Select – Shuffled Sentences

CEM Select – Letter Connections

CEM Select – Multiple Meanings

CEM Select – Selected Letters


Non-Verbal Ability


CEM Select – Pictures


Numerical Ability


CEM Select – Arithmetic

CEM Select – Data Problems


✂️ Save 30% by purchasing our CEM Select Skill Practice Bundle, including all 13 products. Click the button below to learn more:


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If you don’t buy a bundle, don’t forget to use the code ppdiscount at checkout to get 10% off orders over £80 and 20% off orders over £200!


If you have any questions about any of our resources or need any help with them, please do not hesitate to get in touch.


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 CEM Select test or any other test publisher.

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