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St Paul's Girls School entrance exam Watch

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    Hi everyone, I'm applying for spgs sixth form and the A-level subjects I'll be doing are biology, chemistry, physics and maths. Does anyone know what the exams will be like and how to write the personal statement? Really need some help, please


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    With a personal statement you really want to sell yourself: good points include tying in hobbies to course you apply for: how would they help you academically - or if they can't help with the courses, is there any way you could show them as character building?


    Good place to get advice on how to write a personal statement: http://www.studential.com/guide/writ..._statement.htm


    and if you want your personal statement reviewing, TSR offers a service where other students can help you: http://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/wiki...Statement_Help
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    Hi HelenTimebaker,

    I think I might be able to help you - I was in your shoes last year but thankfully I got accepted so I'll be starting at SPGS in a week's time . I will tell you everything I remember but I unfortunately won't be able to help much on the actual content on your exams as I'm doing qualitative subjects rather than sciences.

    1) Open Day: I'm sure you've heard a lot about SPGS, but you really do have to visit the school itself to know if it will suit you. You will need to book. Last year the Open Day was in late September, but this year they may have changed the dates, so check the website. This is really important; not only will you get a "feel" of the school, but you will be able to find about what the Maths/Physics courses entail and what exam boards you would be registered with. (Off the top of my head, Maths students do the Edexcel course at the moment.)

    2) Personal Statement: I would personally recommend that you write a personal statement that is half a page to a page long, and definitely not more than that. You really want to stand out, because it is quite a competitive entrance procedure. Practically everyone applying will be a prefect of some kind, so write about something that really makes you unique. SPGS wants to "recruit" girls who will contribute to the school community, so I would say that it is vital to write about how you would benefit the community. Research will look impressive, so perhaps you do research on what clubs/charities you would join and how you would be of use to them.

    3) The Exams: Ah, the exams! Once they receive your application form and personal statement, you will be invited to an examination day. Don't worry about whether the Paulinas have been studying for a different exam board, as those setting the exams acknowledge that there are many exams boards. I would recommend that you go over all the work you've done previously for Maths and the sciences in order to prepare.
    Whatever you do, don't panic - they are not trying to catch you out; they are trying to gauge your potential. If my experience is anything to go by, you will a) find most exams hard and b) not get everything right. If you cannot answer a question immediately, write down your thought process.

    You may find yourself completely messing up one of your exams. Don't worry about this either - as long as you've done well in the other exams, you may still be invited to interview. And if they like you, they'll take you - at worst, they'll ask you to choose another subject. (This happened to me and a few of the other girls who were successful in gaining a place.)

    OK, I've written quite a bit, but if you need any more assistance you can always message me. Good luck with everything. Oh, and remember to go to the Open Day, because you might find out that you actually hate the place. This, however, is extremely unlikely .
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    (Original post by TotallyJustMe)
    Hi HelenTimebaker,

    I think I might be able to help you - I was in your shoes last year but thankfully I got accepted so I'll be starting at SPGS in a week's time . I will tell you everything I remember but I unfortunately won't be able to help much on the actual content on your exams as I'm doing qualitative subjects rather than sciences.

    1) Open Day: I'm sure you've heard a lot about SPGS, but you really do have to visit the school itself to know if it will suit you. You will need to book. Last year the Open Day was in late September, but this year they may have changed the dates, so check the website. This is really important; not only will you get a "feel" of the school, but you will be able to find about what the Maths/Physics courses entail and what exam boards you would be registered with. (Off the top of my head, Maths students do the Edexcel course at the moment.)

    2) Personal Statement: I would personally recommend that you write a personal statement that is half a page to a page long, and definitely not more than that. You really want to stand out, because it is quite a competitive entrance procedure. Practically everyone applying will be a prefect of some kind, so write about something that really makes you unique. SPGS wants to "recruit" girls who will contribute to the school community, so I would say that it is vital to write about how you would benefit the community. Research will look impressive, so perhaps you do research on what clubs/charities you would join and how you would be of use to them.

    3) The Exams: Ah, the exams! Once they receive your application form and personal statement, you will be invited to an examination day. Don't worry about whether the Paulinas have been studying for a different exam board, as those setting the exams acknowledge that there are many exams boards. I would recommend that you go over all the work you've done previously for Maths and the sciences in order to prepare.
    Whatever you do, don't panic - they are not trying to catch you out; they are trying to gauge your potential. If my experience is anything to go by, you will a) find most exams hard and b) not get everything right. If you cannot answer a question immediately, write down your thought process.

    You may find yourself completely messing up one of your exams. Don't worry about this either - as long as you've done well in the other exams, you may still be invited to interview. And if they like you, they'll take you - at worst, they'll ask you to choose another subject. (This happened to me and a few of the other girls who were successful in gaining a place.)

    OK, I've written quite a bit, but if you need any more assistance you can always message me. Good luck with everything. Oh, and remember to go to the Open Day, because you might find out that you actually hate the place. This, however, is extremely unlikely .
    Hey, looking forward to seeing you! I'm a current student just going in to my last year. I can't help with the admissions stuff as I was 11+ entry, but if you have any questions about school life OP I'm happy to help.
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    (Original post by magicmuggle)
    Hey, looking forward to seeing you! I'm a current student just going in to my last year. I can't help with the admissions stuff as I was 11+ entry, but if you have any questions about school life OP I'm happy to help.
    Hi! I think the 16+ admissions were quite challenging...what was 11+ entry like? Was it difficult? I imagine that there would have been more girls applying for 11+ entry than 16+ entry.
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    (Original post by TotallyJustMe)
    Hi! I think the 16+ admissions were quite challenging...what was 11+ entry like? Was it difficult? I imagine that there would have been more girls applying for 11+ entry than 16+ entry.
    I can barely remember to be quite honest! It seems like such a long time ago. I had to do a maths paper, and I remember coming out and being really worried because I hadn't finished the last question. I think it was difficult but not impossible. Then the english paper was really fun, and I really enjoyed the creative writing bit we had! We had to do a science paper which is probably the bit I remember best. It was about scuba diving and why you can't breathe through straws, and then we had to come up with latin names for animals at the end (for fun, I think). In between we played games in the classroom, and I think there was a game of dodgeball at some point.

    The interview was absolutely terrifying - I was given a Kandinsky painting and asked what it represented, and I remember it took me ages to come up with a sensible answer. I got in in the end, so I can't have been too bad, but i was convinced I hadn't gotten in, so...

    Probably around 400 people applied I think?

    What is 16+ entry like, out of interest?
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    (Original post by magicmuggle)
    I can barely remember to be quite honest! It seems like such a long time ago. I had to do a maths paper, and I remember coming out and being really worried because I hadn't finished the last question. I think it was difficult but not impossible. Then the english paper was really fun, and I really enjoyed the creative writing bit we had! We had to do a science paper which is probably the bit I remember best. It was about scuba diving and why you can't breathe through straws, and then we had to come up with latin names for animals at the end (for fun, I think). In between we played games in the classroom, and I think there was a game of dodgeball at some point.

    The interview was absolutely terrifying - I was given a Kandinsky painting and asked what it represented, and I remember it took me ages to come up with a sensible answer. I got in in the end, so I can't have been too bad, but i was convinced I hadn't gotten in, so...

    Probably around 400 people applied I think?

    What is 16+ entry like, out of interest?
    Ooh...thinking back to my own capabilities at 11, I don't think I would have passed those tests, yet alone made it to the interview! I loved creative writing when I was younger so I might have been alright, but the Maths test sounds difficult and I definitely did not know any Latin. Did you need to have any Latin knowledge to make up the animal names? Because my primary school didn't teach French, yet alone Latin! I had no idea who Kandinsky was at the time too. The games sound cool but they would have revealed my extraordinary clumsiness, which I don't think would have appealed to the admissions team ...

    For eleven year olds, the entrance exams sound incredibly taxing. I would say an amazingly belated "well done" for getting in, but I feel that it might be too late for that .

    I'm not entirely sure of the number of girls who applied for 16+ entry last year, but I've heard that it was something between 100 and 130. It's not quite the same as 400 applicants, but considering that there were only 14 places compared to roughly 100 places for 11+ entry, it was probably just as difficult to get in.

    For the 16+ entry, we had to do tests for each subject we wanted to do at A Level. Each test was about an hour long but we had little breaks in between. For French, we had some grammar exercises and then we had to read and continue a story - I was terrified as we had never written a story en français in school. For History we had to analyse a passage and answer questions and so on, for Latin I had to do some translations, while I had questions and a mini-essay for Economics.

    We had one general interview which was quite nice and then an interview for each subject we had to do. Some were very uncomfortable but most were pleasant - not exactly easy but really entertaining and thought-provoking.

    (Original post by HelenTimebaker)
    Hi TOTALLYJUSTME

    Thank you so much for your helpful reply. Are you starting your life in spgs this year then? Haha good luck!

    I just still have lots of questions if you don't mind What subjects did you do last year? I know some schools have already finished teaching their GCSE syllabuses for Maths and probably Sciences as well in Year 10(?) but my school hasn't, so should I revise the whole textbook? (I did read through them by myself though.)

    Ah and more about this personal statement... I had no idea what to write so I checked on the Internet and mostly they came up with personal statements for university applications, and in those personal statements they just talked about why they should be accepted by the uni because of their passion for the subject they are choosing blablabla and less about themselves. So does that mean for spgs' you just need to write about yourself as an individual?
    Also by 'contribute to the school community' do you mean like being a house captain or charity rep. or stuff like that? I'm not always the loudest in my year if you know what I mean...so what should I write?


    Thanks a lot! xxx
    Well, I did a bit of everything really - Maths, English Language & English Literature, Triple Science, History/Geography, French & Spanish, RE, Classics...those kind of things.

    Yes, I would personally suggest that you make yourself familiar with the entire syllabus of your own exam board. I think you've got the right idea when it comes to reading all of your textbooks as they could ask about a topic that is normally taught at the end of your course.

    Most of the personal statement advice on the internet is about applying to university, and you are right, university personal statements tend to be based on the applicant's passion for the subject. For university this is the right approach as you are only studying one subject, or two at a stretch.

    For SPGS however, I reckon that because you are doing 4-5 subjects at AS Level and you may not end up doing the subjects you originally applied for, I would say that you should focus more on yourself. Do write about your passions and future ambitions though. Yes, house captain/charity rep. are good starters. (Do you go to a boarding school?) Don't fret about not being the loudest though. I have my shy moments too

    BTW I'm not saying that this is the definitive way to write a PS, but this is what worked for me. (I think. They might have found my PS to be the worst they had ever seen, and liked my interviews )
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    (Original post by TotallyJustMe)
    Ooh...thinking back to my own capabilities at 11, I don't think I would have passed those tests, yet alone made it to the interview! I loved creative writing when I was younger so I might have been alright, but the Maths test sounds difficult and I definitely did not know any Latin. Did you need to have any Latin knowledge to make up the animal names? Because my primary school didn't teach French, yet alone Latin! I had no idea who Kandinsky was at the time too. The games sound cool but they would have revealed my extraordinary clumsiness, which I don't think would have appealed to the admissions team ...

    For eleven year olds, the entrance exams sound incredibly taxing. I would say an amazingly belated "well done" for getting in, but I feel that it might be too late for that .

    I'm not entirely sure of the number of girls who applied for 16+ entry last year, but I've heard that it was something between 100 and 130. It's not quite the same as 400 applicants, but considering that there were only 14 places compared to roughly 100 places for 11+ entry, it was probably just as difficult to get in.

    For the 16+ entry, we had to do tests for each subject we wanted to do at A Level. Each test was about an hour long but we had little breaks in between. For French, we had some grammar exercises and then we had to read and continue a story - I was terrified as we had never written a story en français in school. For History we had to analyse a passage and answer questions and so on, for Latin I had to do some translations, while I had questions and a mini-essay for Economics.

    We had one general interview which was quite nice and then an interview for each subject we had to do. Some were very uncomfortable but most were pleasant - not exactly easy but really entertaining and thought-provoking.
    I found them surprisingly fun at the time, although they were so hard. I never thought I'd get in afterwards though. Oh no, they gave you the Latin you needed :P. It was just meant to be a fun exercise for us to do. Some people didn't see the table with all the info in though and got super freaked out about it. I didn't either, I just muddled through and eventually said something that didn't sound completely idiotic. That's the only thing I remember though. They always show something which was difficult to analyse for applicants to talk about at 11+. Haha, thank you! Well done to you too for getting in - the competition sounds fierce...

    Nice subject choices! I do economics and history so if you want to ask me anything about those, I'll be happy to reply (over messenger might be better though). What kind of things did they ask?
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    Go to the boys school, and compared girls school exam to boys school exam. Lol. Im glad I'm a guy. It wasn't hard as in lots of things to know, but it's one of those applied knowledge things. I think you'll actually be in my year :O, year 12 in 2014 I presume?
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    If you are writing a personal statement, keep it short. Our admissions officer said he didn't want to read them and that he was only interested in seeing how much time you spend doing extra curricular activities, in order to ensure that you can keep up with the work load.


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    I'm also applying for spgs and I was just wondering what kind of questions come up in the languages entrance exams? Translation, essay writing?
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    (Original post by Hazard82)
    I've applied to go to the boys school to do Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Maths and Further Maths. What kind of questions do u think will come in the science exams and is just applying ur knowledge - IGCSE questions?
    Omg we are doing exactly the same subjects! I think the maths paper is going to be like the ones you get in maths challenge...


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    (Original post by arabinthemist)
    Go to the boys school, and compared girls school exam to boys school exam. Lol. Im glad I'm a guy. It wasn't hard as in lots of things to know, but it's one of those applied knowledge things. I think you'll actually be in my year :O, year 12 in 2014 I presume?
    Yes and my exams are on next Tuesday... So would the exams be majorly based on the stuff in the gcse syllabuses?


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    (Original post by HelenTimebaker)
    Yes and my exams are on next Tuesday... So would the exams be majorly based on the stuff in the gcse syllabuses?


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    I actually have absolutely no clue. I'm really sorry I can't be of any help. I guess just be strong in the subjects you're taking. I think it says on the school website what kind of material they'll probably test you in.
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    (Original post by Hazard82)
    I've applied to go to the boys school to do Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Maths and Further Maths. What kind of questions do u think will come in the science exams and is just applying ur knowledge - IGCSE questions?
    Probably more advanced. I really dont know as I havent taken the exams, (came at 13), although I think you should be beyond igcse standard, although I might be completely wrong.
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    Yeah just found out I am too guess il see you in the interviews good luck

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    Please tell me how to prepare for test . Any clue what type of questions I have to answer ?
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    (Original post by Bonna)
    Please tell me how to prepare for test . Any clue what type of questions I have to answer ?
    It's GCSE topics, but it's quite simple knowledge. You just need to do really well in it.
    What subjects are you applying to do?
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    (Original post by iwishicouldfly14)
    It's GCSE topics, but it's quite simple knowledge. You just need to do really well in it.
    What subjects are you applying to do?
    Maths , physics, chemistry and biology.
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    But I am nervous because I am not good at math challenge or tricky questions. For interview what that ask ?
 
 
 
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