11 Plus Interview Questions and Guide

The basics of 11+ interviews

Some schools use interviews as part of their selection process at Eleven Plus. Although this may sound intimidating to a child of ten or eleven, it is really little more than an opportunity for the school to gauge a child’s confidence, social skills and interest in joining the school. Many schools using interviews ask that the student brings something with them to talk about, typically a favourite piece of work from Year 6 or some other personal item, and then base the interview around this. Other schools will interview students in large groups of eight or ten, by asking them to take part in a group activity of some sort. This allows the school to gauge the children's social skills and ability to work with a group.

Simple matters like shaking hands, making eye contact whilst doing so and not sitting until being invited to do so will go a long way. Beyond this, the child is likely to be asked why they want to join the school, to which a respectable answer would be an awareness of the school’s history, approach and achievements.

Conversation will probably involve a student’s favourite subjects at school and extra-curricular interests, at which point it will definitely help to heavily push achievements in sport and music.

Typical questions used in an 11+ interview

Schools do their best to conduct interviews as informal chats and whilst they understand that your child may be nervous, it is helpful if your child can maintain a conversation by providing answers with a good level of detail. Appearing enthusiastic, interested and confident also helps hugely. Usually the questions asked will be based on previous answers given by the child, but occasionally they may ask a prepared question. Typical questions include:

  • Why do you want to come to this school?
  • What do you like about our school?
  • What are your hobbies and interests?
  • What do you do in your spare time?
  • What is your favourite subject?
  • Why do you like it?
  • What is your least favourite subject?
  • What do you typically do on a Saturday afternoon?
  • Who is your favourite author and why?
  • Name someone from history who you admire

If you would like more questions, this external provider has over one thousand teacher generated 11 plus questions and guide.

What else should I know about the 11 Plus?

Once you understand the basic mechanics of the 11+ exam, it is important to get your head around both the Maths and English syllabus. You can do this by reading our relevant articles below:

If you're not sure on the fundamentals of the 11+, we recommend reading our beginners guide. This can be found here:

If you are still deciding which school to put your child forward for at 11+, we recommend using our school admissions guide to better understand the admissions process for a number of schools offering 11+ entry.

Although we don't provide sample papers for the ISEB pre-test, we do provide our own set of Eleven Plus exam papers. These are completely free to use, and cover the main subjects assessed at 11+. You can view these using the link below.

If you are looking for a tutor, we can certainly help. We offer home tutors in London, online tutors internationally, and both short- and long-term residential tuition placements. All of our tutors are qualified school teachers, with classroom teaching experience in the subjects they tutor.

We store some data to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue to use this site we will assume that you are happy with this. You can learn more here