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11+ CEM

What is the CEM 11+?

If you are starting 11+ preparations for your child, you may have come across the acronym CEM. CEM is an abbreviation of ‘Centre for Evaluation and Monitoring’, a leading provider of the 11+ assessment across the country for over 30 years.

CEM pride themselves on “ensuring a fair school admissions process”, enabling children to demonstrate their natural academic potential. For this reason, CEM do not publish practice papers or past papers.

Which regions use CEM 11+?

Whether a child sits the CEM exam or the GL Assessment (second leading 11+ exam provider) depends entirely on the region of the grammar school. As of 2019, regions using the CEM exam format include:







Trafford (some schools use GL Assessment)





Yorkshire (some schools use GL Assessment)

For further information regarding the specific testing criteria in your region, CND recommends that parents contact their preferred grammar school directly or visit their local education authority website.

Subjects in the CEM 11+

Past CEM exams have consisted of two papers lasting around 50 minutes each. Each paper is divided into individually timed sections covering Maths, English, Verbal Skills and Non-Verbal Reasoning; although schools can choose any combination of these to best suit their selection policy. Therefore, although the topics of the CEM 11+ tend to remain the same across regions, the questions can differ.

Format of the CEM 11+

The CEM test is very fast-paced and this is accentuated by subdividing the papers into individual sections with a varying number of multiple-choice questions and timings. Once the time in each section has elapsed, children will not get the opportunity to re-visit a section. We recommend children familiarise themselves with the multiple-choice style layout, however problem solving is the only section that will require written answers. All answers are marked on a separate answer sheet.

How can CND help your child prepare for the CEM 11+? 

Preparing for the CEM 11+ entrance exam is a unique journey and each child has a different set of goals. For this reason, CND ensure that our 11plus  tuition programmes are tailored specifically to suit areas for improvement, with weaker topics targeted in future tests. Furthermore, each child will be allocated an experienced 11+ tutor whom parents may contact over the phone or via email regarding their progress.

Regardless of whether your child is sitting the CEM 11+ or GL Assessment, time management skills are essential. That’s why all of our Year 5  tests are timed, helping children to manage their time effectively. Speed and accuracy skills are also tested using our ‘Beat the Clock’ tests, encouraging your child to beat their past score each week!

Please note that the information on this page was believed to be accurate at the time of publication.

However, CND always recommends checking with the individual school websites or contacting your local consortium of grammar schools before acting upon any information given.

Speak to an education adviser on 0753 5050 502 / 020 8580 5050
regarding the best 11+ options for your child. We’re here to help!