Academic Scholarships

Abingdon School 13+ scholarship examination for entry in September 2018

Key Dates  
Entry form returned to school:
(entry forms are available from your school or the Admissions Department)
Friday 1 December 2017
Academic Scholarship Monday 5 March to Thursday 8 March 2018

Summary of papers and Interviews

The papers and interviews listed below, except for Greek, are compulsory. Some candidates from certain preparatory schools, however, negotiate a dispensation from Latin.

Where a pupil has a special talent or interest which he would like to be taken into account in the award of a scholarship, such as the ability to speak a different language, we are always prepared to set an additional paper, or arrange for an extra interview, to assess his potential.

General Paper
(1hr 30 mins)
Comprehension on a passage, plus one essay, selected from a wide range of titles.
The interview (20 mins) may make reference to the general paper, as well as including questions on a piece of poetry (which will be given to candidates shortly before the interview) and a piece of art.
(1hr 15 mins)

Q1. 'Found' Poetry: candidates will be given a piece of prose and asked to bring out its poetic features by arranging it as a poem on the page. They will then have to explain their choices in a piece of continuous writing.
Q2. Essay: one selected from a choice of tasks covering descriptive writing, narrative writing and persuasive writing

Mathematics (1hr 30 mins) About seven questions, based on the extended common entrance syllabus (papers 2 and 4), and designed to test mathematical intuition and potential.
(1hr 30 mins)

All questions must be attempted, and there will be equal weighting between Physics, Chemistry and Biology. Based on the Common Entrance syllabus (national curriculum level 6).

(1hr 30 mins)

A. Unseen Translation
B. Comprehension
C. Either sentences from English to Latin
or a harder comprehension including linguistic questions

Listening comprehension
(30 mins)
Passages on tape/CD: questions in French.
Reading comprehension
(30 mins)
Some questions in English, some in French.
Essay and grammar
(45 mins)
Choice of one of two essays of 150 words based on a picture stimulus, or instructions given in English or French, depending on the task.
(10 mins)

General conversation. Topics chosen by the examiner from the following list: (a) home, family and friends; (b) school; (c) leisure; (d) holidays and travel; e) problems - accidents, illness, lost property; (f) town and surrounding country; (g) pocket money.

We are looking for candidates who show potential as linguists, who have a wide range of vocabulary, and who can manipulate the language they have learnt with imagination and confidence in any situation. Very good knowledge of Present, Future (all forms), Perfect and Imperfect tenses is essential. Candidates must be able to manipulate these tenses with confidence. Outline knowledge of the Pluperfect is desirable but not essential. Candidates will be expected to use articles, adjectives and pronouns with a high degree of accuracy and will be expected to make good use of a range of idioms such as être en train de, être sur le point de, depuis, après avoir, avant de, use of si, qui & que, negative expressions.

(2 hrs)

Each candidate answers questions from two of the three sections only. In each section, there is one compulsory question, and one essay selected from a wide range. The compulsory question in history and religious studies is a comprehension exercise; in geography it is a map question.

Section A Geography
Section B History
Section C Religious Studies

(1hr 30 mins)

A. Greek to English sentences
B. Unseen translation
C. Harder unseen
D. Either sentences from English to Greek
or a comprehension including linguistic questions

In Greek, questions are in ascending order of difficulty and candidates are allowed to complete as much of the examination as they can, depending on how long they have been learning Greek.

The Third Year 2018 academic scholarship will take place from Monday 5 March until Thursday 8 March 2018. The deadline for applications is Friday 1 December 2017.

Following the award of the new Neil Coulbeck scholarship for the first time in 2013, this will again be given to a successful candidate for the academic scholarship who also excels as an all-rounder. There is no requirement for a separate application as all the academic scholars will automatically be considered for this award.

For further information please contact the Admissions Registrar on 01235 849041 or email