Guide to the Transfer Test | The Transfer Test
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Information & Help with the Northern Ireland Transfer Test

Guide to the Transfer Test

Guide to the Transfer Test

When the 11+ was abolished it was replaced by two different transfer tests. They are commonly known as the AQE and the GL.

Which test(s) your child sits depends on which grammar schools your child wants to apply to. Some grammar schools accept either test but most use one or the other. Our Schools page lists all grammar schools and which test(s) they accept.
It is the responsibility of the parents to register their child for the tests.

See our Key Dates page for a list of important transfer test related dates.

AQE

  • The AQE's test is called the Common Entrance Assessment (CEA) is set and marked by AQE Ltd in Belfast.
  • This test is commonly referred to as the AQE.
  • The AQE is mostly used by the state (non-denominational) grammar schools.
  • There are 3 assessment papers.
  • Children may sit two or all three papers: in the latter case the best two scores will count.
  • Almost all children sit all 3 papers to give them the best chance of a higher score.
  • There is a fee to register for the assessment.
  • AQE scores use a standardised age score with 100 as the mean (average) score.
  • More AQE information

GL

  • The PPTC's test is called the GL Assessment is set and marked by GL Assessment Ltd. in England.
  • The GL Assessment is mostly used by the Catholic maintained grammar schools.
  • This test commonly referred to as the GL.
  • There are two assessment papers.
  • One is an English paper and the other is a Maths paper.
  • Both papers are multiple choice format.
  • Both papers are taken on the same day.
  • There is no fee to register the assessment
  • GL scores use a standardised age score ranging from 69 to 141 with 100 as the mean (average) score.
  • More GL information