Read our top tips on how to help your child prepare for their 13+ Common Entrance Exam so that they can secure a place at one of the UK’s leading schools.
Private Tutors for 13 Plus Common Entrance
in London and Online
The 13 Plus Common Entrance exam (13+), taken in Year 8, is broader than any other exam your son or daughter will have tackled before. As well as English, Maths and Science, he or she will sit additional papers for anything from French to Religious Studies or Classical Greek. We introduce highly experienced 13 Plus tutors to help your child with these subjects and to give them the tools they need to secure a place at one of the UK’s leading senior schools. To ensure your child fully benefits from their course of tuition, it is important that they work with a tutor who complements their character and learning style. Our bespoke service is guaranteed to match your child with a tutor who is the right fit for them.
Our 13 Plus Common Entrance tuition is available in-person in central London or online. We can also introduce residential tutors and international tutors to live and travel with you anywhere in the world.
Sophie Taylor Barthorpe, SLT's Director of Tuition explains how to ensure that 13 Plus tuition is effective.
13 Plus Tutors
SLT introduces expert 13 Plus and Common Entrance tutors to help your child prepare for all parts of the 13 Plus exam. Each of the tutors listed below is known personally by us, and we will take care to match a tutor with just the right character and teaching style to help your child excel in the compulsory Maths, English and Science papers as well as any optional papers they are taking. Many of the tutors are also familiar with the particular entry requirements of specific day and boarding schools and will be able to share vital insider tips on what the school is looking for.
Alex has a BA and MSc in Maths from Oxford University, and also specialises in Oxbridge admissions. Alongside this he prepares students for 11+ and 13+ Entrance Exams.
Alex specialises in English and Maths tuition and has taught many of our home schooled students.
Alex specialises in tutoring Economics to A-level, as well as BSc and MSc level Economics and Business & Management. He also supports with university applications.
Alexa tutors students for entrance exams from 7+ to 13+. She also prepares students for interviews and scholarship applications.
Alexander specialises in varying entrance exams and core GCSE subjects. He also prepares students for Oxbridge applications.
Alexandra is a qualified teacher with over 8 years experience, who specialises in English and Maths tuition. She also teaches Psychology, German and French.
Alice is trilingual and supports with English, French and Spanish. She also specialises in Psychology tuition for A Level students, and teaches Maths at 7+, 11+ and 13+.
Alison specialises in Latin. She also teaches Greek and English Language for varying entrance exams.
Alli has a DPhil from Oxford in Chemical Engineering and specialises in Maths and Science tuition from 11+ through to A Level.
Amin specialises in Maths and Science tuition, specifically for the 7+, 11+, 13+ and GCSE Examinations.
Andrea taught at one of London's top independent schools and is now a full-time tutor. She specialises in English tuition and has prepared students for many of the UK's most competitive entrance exams in English and Maths.
Andrea specialises in French and Spanish tuition at GCSE and A Level. She also tutors the 11+ and 13+ Entrance Exams in both English and Maths.
Andrew's specialist subject is Latin, aimed specifically at Common Entrance level, as well as towards Scholarships and GCSEs.
Anil is an Oxford graduate who is highly multidisciplinary teaching a range of subjects including Maths, English, Music and Science.
Ben has tutored for over 10 years and specialises in English, Maths and Science tuition, including preparation for 11+ and 13+ exams.
Beth is a very experienced tutor who has worked around the world, specialising in English tuition.
Caitlin specialises in English for the younger years. She also tutors students for school entrance exams, implementing Maths and Reasoning.
Callum specialises in English and Maths tuition from 7+ up to GCSE, including 11+ and 13+ tuition. Callum is also very experienced in teaching children with special educational needs, particularly in supporting with English and creative writing.
Cameron specialises in Maths for the 11+ and 13+, as well as for GCSE students. He can also provide tuition for French, English and Verbal and Non-Verbal Reasoning.
Camille specialises in English Literature and Language. She provides tuition for 11+ and 13+, as well as University entrance exams.
Candace is a highly multidisciplinary tutor, with particular specialisms in Geography, History, Maths, English, Biology and Classics. She also supports with competitive entrance exams, including the 13+ and SAT.
Carrie teaches English, History, and French, including maths for the 11+, 13+ and UKiset. She also provides mentoring, interview preparation and Oxford applications advice.
Chris specialises in Maths and Physics tuition and also has experience with Homeschooling.
Claire is a qualified maths teachers, and also supports with Oxbridge applications.
Claudia is a highly experienced multidisciplinary tutor, teaching English, History of Art, History, Geography, Religious Studies & Media studies.
Daniel has been a private tutor for over 5 years and specialises in English and History tuition from 13+ upwards.
Dora specialises in 11+ and 13+ preparation and interview practice. She also has extensive experience tutoring students with SEN.
Dween's specialist subject is preparing children for Entrance Examinations. He also teaches Key Stage 1-3 Maths & English, A Level Politics & Philosophy and University Politics.
Ed specialises in History, Politics and Geography exam preparation from 11+ up to and including A Level. He also prepares students for Oxbridge applications.
Edward's specialist subject is English Literature, he also teaches History and Maths to GCSE and Science to Common Entrance.
Emma specialises in Psychology tuition and also teaches Latin, English and Maths for the 7+, 8+, 11+ and 3+ exams.
Ewan is a qualified teacher, who specialises in Maths and Physics tuition up to ALevel. He can also support with biology and Chemistry up to GCSE, and has supported students for 13+ Exam Preparation.
Freddie specialises in English Literature and Language; he also teaches Theology, Ancient Greek and Latin. As well as preparing students for 11+, 13+ and 16+ entry examinations.
Gavin has an MPhil from the University of Cambridge in Modern European History and specialises in History tuition up to A Level. He also supports with English and Maths for the 11+ and 13+.
Gillian is a highly multidisciplinary tutor, who specialises in English and Maths Tuition and has been working with us for 5 years.
Heather is an Acting graduate who specialises in English and Theatre Studies. She is also an experienced SEN tutor, at a range of levels.
Helena specialises in English and History tuition and has supported students with the 11+ and 13+ Entrance Exams.
Hugh has an MFA in Fine art, and specialises in this and English to Undergraduate level. He also teaches Maths for the 7+, 8+, 11+ and 13+ exams.
Issy specialises in English Literature and tutors the subject from 11+ up to A Level. She is also experienced in teaching English as an additional language.
Jack specialises in English and Maths tuition for students up to GSCE level, including preparation for the 11+ and 13+ exams. He also prepares students for the LNAT exam and supports with Oxbridge applications.
James is a Maths specialist who also has experience tutoring Physics, Economics, 11+ Entrance Exams and Scholarship Exams.
James specialises in Science tuition, along with Geography and Art. He has particular experience preparing students for 13+ exams.
James specialises in tutoring towards entrance examinations, in particular 7+, 11+ and 13+. He also supports Oxbridge applications.
James is a highly experienced English teacher and entrance exam specialist, from 11+ to university applications.
Janet is an Entrance Exam specialist, particularly with Science tuition, and a specialist online tutor
Jenny is an English specialist, and also specialises in 7+, 11+ and 13+ preparation, teaching both the English and Maths papers.
Jeremy is a Classics graduate from Oxford and specialises in Latin, Greek and English Tuition. He also tutors Maths, Science, French, History and Philosophy.
Joanna specialises in English tuition, and also supports with maths up to 11+.
Joanne specialises in Biology tuition, all Sciences up to GCSE and Mathematics. She also prepares students for entrance exams from 8+ to 16+.
Joe specialises in English tuition, and also supports with Maths for 11+ and 13+ entry. He can also teach Science, French, History and Drama.
John is a highly multidisciplinary tutor, who specialises particularly in Biology and History tuition. He also teaches Psychology, Chemistry, Physics Philosophy, UCAS, Geography, Maths and English.
Julie is a qualified teacher and specialises in French tuition. She also teaches English.
Katherine is a highly multidisciplinary tutor, who supports with a wide range of subjects, including English, Maths, Geography, SAT/ACT, Business Studies and University applications.
Katherine is a Latin specialist, teaching students up to A Level. She is also highly experienced with 11+ English and Maths tuition.
Katie is an experienced primary school teacher. She specialises in preparing students for 7+, 11+ and 13+. She also provides interview practice.
Kieran is an Oxford Alumni, specialising in entrance examinations, History, English Language and Literature, and Oxbridge applications.
Kieron is a Cambridge Classics graduate, who is highly multidisciplinary. He is also very experienced at supporting students for entry to schools such as Eton College, in both English, Maths and Latin papers.
Laura specialises in English and Entrance Exam tuition. She also supports with Maths, Science and Spanish.
Leena specialises in teaching Maths and Science, she also teaches BMAT, UCAT and entrance examinations.
Leia specialises in Maths, Science and Geography from 11+ up to A Level. She also tutors students in essay writing for University entry.
Leon specialises in English tuition, and is an Entrance Exam specialist, teaching from 7+ through to 13+. Leon also teaches Essay based subjects such as History, Geography and the Social Sciences.
Lizzy specialises in English and History up to A level, and also supports with Maths up to GCSE. She also tutors for the 11+, 13+, 16+ and Ukiset Entrance Exams.
Lucinda is a French and Spanish specialist, who also supports with English tuition, including tuition for the 11+ and 13+ exams.
Lucy is an English specialist, who can also support with Maths up to 13+ and Latin up to GCSE.
Lucy is an English specialist, who is currently completing a PhD at the University of Cambridge. She also teaches French, Spanish and Maths for competitive entrance exams.
Luke specialises in Maths and Physics tuition. He also teaches Economics, Chemistry, Biology and competitive Entrance Exam preparation.
Luke specialises in French and Spanish. He also prepares students for 13+, 16+ and UCAS applications and personal statement guidance.
Lux specialises in Maths and English tuition and is also experienced supporting with the 11+ and 13+ entrance exams.
Madelaine is a qualified teacher who specialises in English and Maths tuition. She also has a huge amount of homeschooling experience, and experience with students with SEN.
Margaret specialises in English and Maths tuition, with a huge amount of experience with competitive Entrance Exams. She also supports with History.
Matthew specialises in English Language and Literature. He also prepares students for entrance exams and Oxbridge applications.
Matthew is a highly multidisciplinary tutor, with a particular specialism in Science, English, Maths and competitive Exam preparation, including the 13+, TSA, PAT, MAT and STEP exams.
Max specialises in English tuition from Pre-school to A Level and has also supported with Entrance exams for students at 8+, 11+ and 13+.
Mutasim is a qualified teacher and specialises in Maths, Economics and competitive entrance exam preparation for the 11+ and 13+ exams.
Natasha is a multidisciplinary tutor, who specialises in Exam Preparation, English and Art. She can also support with Maths, Chemistry and Classics.
Nick specialises in English and Maths tuition, along with supporting with the 7+, 11+ and 13+ exams and Drama up to A Level.
Nick specialises in Maths, English, Geography and History tuition. He also teaches Science at 13+ level and has supported many students with competitive entrance exams.
Nicola is a University Lecturer who is highly multidisciplinary, specialising in English, Maths, History and Art History, as well as 11+ and 13+ exams.
Nils specialises in English tuition and is a qualified teacher with over 20 years experience. He has also supported with the 11+ and 13+ Entrance Exams.
Noelle specialises in Maths and English tuition for the 11+ and 13+ exams. She also teaches English up to GCSE level.
Omari is a highly multidisciplinary tutor, specialising particularly in English and Maths for Entrance exams from 7+ to 13+ for some of the UK's most competitive schools.
Phineas has been tutoring since 2007. He specialises in Humanities and Languages - French and German. He tutors from 7+ age up to A-level.
Rajiv is an Entrance Exams specialist, specifically English, Maths and Science for the 11+ and 13+ exams. He also teaches Science and Latin up to GCSE level.
Robert is a multidisciplinary tutor, who specialises in English, History, Philosophy and Geography. He also specialises in Exam preparation for the 7+, 11+ and 13+, teaching Maths and Science at these levels.
Rosemary is a multidisciplinary tutor, who specialises in SEN support. She also teaches English, Geography, History, 7+, 11+ and 13+ Entrance Exams.
Rupert is a PGCE Qualified teacher, who supports with a wide range of subjects including English and Maths and has a range of SEN experience.
Sally specialises in exam preparation, with her students receiving offers from top London Day schools. She tutors from 7+ up to GCSE.
Sean is an online tutor, who specialises in Chemistry and Mathematics. He also supports with Physics and Biology.
Sean is a mentor and tutor who also supports with Personal Statements and Oxbridge applications.
Sean is an English and Maths specialist, while also supporting with Entrance exams, American Standardised Admissions Tests, Science, History, Geography and Music.
Sebastian specialises in Philosophy and English LIterature, and also supports with 13+ Entrance Exams. He is also a trained Career Mentor.
Sophia's specialist subjects are Latin and French and she is experienced in teaching 11+ and 13+.
Sophie is a qualified teacher, who specialises in Latin and English tuition. She has a particularly strong track record supporting students for competitive Entrance Exams and is a specialist Online tutor.
Tom specialises in English, entrance examinations and Government and Politics. He also teaches the SAT for US admissions.
Tristan specialises in tutoring GCSE and A-Level geography. He also prepares students for 13+ and the TSA for Oxbridge applications.
Verity specialises in online tuition, with a particular focus on English, 7+, 11+ and UKiset tuition.
Vishal specialises in Entrance Exam Admissions at 7+, 8+, 10+, 11+, 13+ and 16+. He also supports English, Maths and Science up to GCSE level.
William is a Cambridge graduate and highly experienced tutor. He teaches English, Maths, German and Science and has worked with SLT for over 10 years.
Xanthi teaches Maths, English and Science, specialising in GCSE Maths and English. As a writer, she is well-equipped to teach essay writing and has proven success in this area at a wide range of levels. She also specialises in Philosophy at A Level and above.
"My son gained a scholarship to St Paul’s School, gaining A grades in both Greek and Latin".
Ms. A, 13+ Preparation
"Adam was a wonderful tutor, who worked hard to build up a rapport with James. James was offered several places and an academic scholarship.
Mrs. S, 13+ Preparation
“Jack came to tutor our 13-year-old son for his Common Entrance exam for Eton College. After a day or so his charisma has attracted all 5 children to request tutoring! He turned Timothy from a predicted/mock grade C to achieving a grade A and the highest C.E. pass from his school”.
Mrs. W, Eton 13+ Common Entrance Preparation
"Joseph has been accepted to Radley College. He scored all ‘A’s on his exams. Thank you very much for your kind help; you introduced a very good, organised tutor".
Ms. J, 13+ Radley Preparation
What is the 13 Plus?
The 13 Plus is a set of entrance exams which are used by senior independent schools in the UK to assess candidates for entry into Year 9. They are typically taken in the spring or summer term of Year 8, and for some schools, may follow earlier stages in the assessment process such as the pre-test and 11 Plus, taken in Year 6.
Common Entrance is a term for the 13 Plus examinations set and administered by the Independent Schools Examinations Board (ISEB). The majority of independent senior schools use the Common Entrance for their 13 Plus assessments. A small number, for instance Dulwich College, prefer to set their own 13 Plus papers.
What does the 13 Plus Common Entrance exam involve?
The 13 Plus Common Entrance assesses a much wider range of subjects than the 11 Plus. The level of difficulty is also considerably higher. There are three compulsory papers:
There are also a wide range of additional papers. Some schools, especially more academically selective ones, may require students to sit some of these; others leave it up to individual students to decide which they take. The additional papers include:
Why is the 13 Plus exam important?
Senior schools use the 13 Plus to select students for entry into Year 9. Many competitive schools will make offers to students after their pre-test or 11 Plus which are conditional on them achieving good results in the 13 Plus.
Other schools do not have a pre-test or 11 Plus stage for Year 9 entry, but rely entirely on the 13 Plus to select candidates. Either way, if your child is aiming for a competitive senior school, they will need to perform well at 13 Plus.
Unlike the 11 Plus, the 13 Plus incorporates a compulsory science paper and many other additional subject papers. This is likely to be the first time your child has sat an external examination in these subjects. Furthermore, the level required is much more demanding than at 11 Plus. Thorough preparation for the 13 Plus is therefore key.
What is the difference between 13 Plus Common Entrance and the ISEB pre-test?
Like the 13 Plus Common Entrance, the ISEB pre-test is an assessment set by the Independent Schools Examination Board. The pre-test is taken in Year 6 and is the first stage in the assessment process for some of the most competitive senior schools (for instance, Eton College, Wellington College, St Paul’s, Harrow and Westminster). Successful candidates progress to the 11 Plus assessment later in Year 6, and those who perform well at that stage will be made an offer of a place conditional on them achieving certain grades at 13 Plus Common Entrance in Year 8.
The ISEB pre-test is an online adaptive assessment, testing English, Maths and reasoning, taken in Year 6. For most schools, the 13 Plus is a handwritten series of assessments in English, Maths, Science, and potentially other additional subjects, taken in Year 8.
You can read our full guide to the ISEB pre-test for more information.
How tutoring for the 13 Plus works
Every 13 Plus tutor will have a slightly different approach, but good 13 Plus preparation will always target the specific skills which are tested in the assessments. Some tutors will have experience of teaching multiple subjects at 13 Plus, but you might also want to consider working with a specialist tutor for the additional subjects like Classics or Theology, Philosophy and Religion.
The tutor’s first step will be to assess your child’s current level of ability in the subject they are preparing for. Then they can work on developing their core skills and knowledge in that subject through a mixture of interactive practise in the lesson and homework which the child can tackle independently in their free time.
It is important for the tutor to begin integrating past exam practice at an early stage. This is to familiarise your child with how the exams look, and to enable them to master exam technique and time management. Finally, they will focus on any remaining areas of weakness so there are no gaps in your child’s knowledge before the real exams.
At SLT, all of our 13 Plus Common Entrance tuition is delivered one-to-one so it is completely bespoke to your child’s needs. We know every tutor we introduce personally, and match them to your child so that there is a good character and academic fit between them. In our experience, this ensures the child is happy and engaged in their learning, and gets the best results.
What is the difference between 13 Plus tutoring and normal tutoring for specific subjects?
13 Plus Common Entrance tuition is tailored towards the specific subjects and skills which are assessed in the 13 Plus examinations: English, Maths, Science, and any additional papers your child is taking. The particular knowledge and skills assessed at 13 Plus are slightly different (and usually more challenging) than the school curriculum, so dedicated preparation is strongly recommended. 13 Plus tuition also teaches children vital exam technique and time management which is not usually covered in standard subject tuition.
How to decide whether a child needs 13 Plus tuition or tutoring for specific subjects
If your child is in Year 7 or 8, will not be taking the 13 Plus, but is struggling in a particular subject (like English, Maths, Science, History or a modern language) they would likely benefit from working with a tutor for that subject. However, they would not need dedicated 13 Plus tuition.
If your child has 13 Plus examinations coming up for entry to senior school, working with an experienced 13 Plus tutor can make all the difference to their preparation. A generalist tutor may be able to help a little with the core skills, but the 13 Plus also tests knowledge which is not part of the school curriculum. This is so that academically competitive schools can select only the strongest applicants.
Here, there is no substitute for working one-to-one with a tutor with lots of entrance exam experience. Furthermore, some schools will include an interview as part of their assessment at 13 Plus. Preparation with a school entrance specialist will be invaluable for giving them the edge in this part of the process.
How to prepare for the 13 Plus Common Entrance exam
The first stage in preparation is to make sure you know which subjects your child will be taking. For most schools, English, Maths and Science are compulsory, but your child may also be taking a range of additional papers in other subjects.
We have successfully prepared students for the 13 Plus since 2009, and in our experience, preparation should begin at least a year in advance (when the child is in Year 7). This allows plenty of time to cover the 13 Plus curriculum and to integrate the all-important past paper practice which can make such a difference on the day. Last-minute cramming is scientifically proven to be ineffective compared with a measured course of targeted preparation.
As the level of difficulty steps up from 11 Plus, many parents will find that the questions are less familiar and they are less confident preparing their child themselves. Children benefit enormously from 1-1 tuition from an expert 13 Plus tutor with experience of preparing students for the specific subjects they are taking. The tutor can tackle any areas of weakness, consolidate areas of strength, and pass on vital advice on exam technique which can often be the difference between grade boundaries.
For further information, our in-house team of tuition experts, in consultation with some leading 13 Plus tutors, have written this guide to 13 Plus preparation.
13 Plus practice exams
You can order past papers and practice papers for the 13 Plus Common Entrance from the ISEB site.
Advice for Parents
Here is a selection of the most popular Advice for Parents articles that covers a wide variety of topics and questions we have encountered advising families since 2009. You can access more articles on our Advice for Parents page by using the link below.