Cognitive Testing: Your Questions Answered

This page contains answers to the questions you may have considered regarding our Cognitive Testing arrangements at Magna Academy. If you would like to apply for a place on the published test dates then please complete the form at the bottom of this page, which will list the remaining available dates. If you have questions that are not answered here then please email office@magna-aspirations.org and we will get back to you with an answer as soon as possible.

Q:  Why do you need my child to sit a Cognitive Ability Test?
A:
It is important to understand that this is not a 'pass or fail' test.
The results of the test are used to allocate each student applicant to one of three ability bands: Low, Middle and High. 
 
Q: Does every child sit the Test, regardless of their circumstances?
A:
It is not compulsory for children:
 
  • who are looked after or have been previously looked after
  • whose statement of Special Educational Needs (SEN) or Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP) names the Academy

to sit the test. However, it is strongly recommended that they do sit it as the test will enable appropriate interventions and support to be readily available from the start of term. Any student with identified Special Educational Needs will be provided with support in the test in line with usual examination arrangements.

Otherwise, all student applicants to the Academy will be required to sit the Cognitive Ability Test. This will be sat in the September of the year that applications for places are made. There will be a choice of Test days. So, Year 6 pupils who are considering applying for a place at the Academy in October will sit the Test in September/October 2017.

Q: What happens if my child is ill on the day they are due to be tested?
A:
Any student ill on the day of the test will be provided with an opportunity to sit the test on an alternative day, provided the illness is supported by an official medical note.
 
Q: What happens if my child cannot attend on any of the formal test dates?
A:
Any student who applies for a place at the Academy on time without having sat the test will be offered the
opportunity to sit the test before the final place allocations are made in March 2018.
 
Q: How do you decide the cut-off from one ability band to another?
A:
The percentage of places available in each band will be determined by the profile of the national distribution of ability. This will be determined by GL Assessment, who administer the Test. Parents will be informed of the Test result before the closing date for applications on 31 October 2017.
 
The percentages of places in each band will vary from year to year. However, as a guide, the national ability profile for 2016 entry was:     Low ability: 23%     Middle ability: 54%     High ability: 23%.
 
Q: How will we know when the tests are taking place?
A:
An advert inviting the interested parents/carers of all Year 6 pupils to apply to sit the Magna Academy Poole Cognitive Ability Test will be placed in local newspapers and on the Academy website. A letter will also be sent out to all local
primary and junior schools within a three-mile radius of the Academy. Parents will be asked to contact the
Academy to ask for their child to sit the test.
 
Q: What will happen after I apply for my child to sit the test?
A:
A letter of invitation will be sent out to you by post. This letter will be your child's Test Registration Card, which will include the following information: Student’s Name; Test Session (Date and Time).
 
It is very important that this letter is brought by the student to the relevant test session. The student will not be allowed to sit the test without the letter because this is proof of the child’s identity at the child’s home address.
 
Students who apply but have not yet sat the test will be invited to take the tests by letter sent to the address stated on the Common Application Form.
 
 
Cognitive Ability Test: Application for testing
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