11+ Verbal Reasoning exam │ Bond 11+

Verbal reasoning book

Find out more about the 11+ verbal reasoning exam and how Bond 11+ verbal reasoning resources can support your child on their path to exam success.

11+ verbal reasoning exam overview

Bond 11+ verbal reasoning resources

Tips for parents

Free resources

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11+ Verbal Reasoning exam overview

Verbal reasoning tests assess children’s problem solving skills when working at speed, and also test how effectively they can process information.

Verbal reasoning is not part of the National Curriculum in state primary schools, and this style of assessment may feel quite strange for children who have not seen questions framed in this way before. This is why practising these kinds of questions at home is so important: it helps familiarise children with a style of testing that they won’t experience at school.

The scope and content of an 11+ verbal reasoning exam differs from region to region as there are a wide range of question types that can be included. However, the tests will usually require children to:

  • Process verbal information
  • Apply logical thinking and problem-solving skills
  • Find and follow patterns and rules
  • Determine word meaning
  • Spell accurately
  • Apply basic maths skills
  • Work systematically

There are two different formats for 11+ verbal reasoning exam papers:

  • Standard format – where children write their answers on the test paper
  • Multiple-choice format – where answers are marked in a separate answer booklet

11+ verbal reasoning exam papers are timed and usually last between 45-60 minutes. Children should practise with timed 11+ mock test papers, as well as working through non-timed practice, so they can see what they are able to do within a given time frame.


Bond 11+ Verbal Reasoning resources

Bond is the number 1 provider of 11+ practice materials, helping millions of children pass selective entrance exams. Offering a comprehensive learning programme for the 11+, we have a wide range of resources to support you and your child:

Bond Assessment Papers

Bond 11 plus assessment papers

Topic-based practice questions that set the foundation for success. These carefully-graded practice papers provide essential practice for each question type in a realistic exam style. Ages 5-13+ 

Now with fully explained answers (for ages 9-11)

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Bond 11+ Verbal Reasoning Handbook

Bond 11 plus How to Do

Step-by-step guidance for developing the skills needed for the 11+ verbal reasoning exam and other entrance tests. With clear explanations and worked examples of all 11+ verbal reasoning question types. 

Practical support for parents and children aged 8-11+

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Bond CEM 11+

Bond 11 plus CEM test papers

Developed specifically for the CEM 11+ exam, we’ve created a range of materials to help you prepare your child for the CEM 11+ exam, including assessment papers, test papers and learning guides. Ages 8-11+

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Bond Test Papers

Bond 11 plus test papers

Bond 11+ test paper packs enable realistic mock exam practice at home, matching the style, content and difficulty of the real 11+ examination. Ages 7-11

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Bond 10 Minute Tests

Bond 11 plus 10 minute tests

Bite-sized tests for quick practice and revision, including coverage of all the core skills and motivating and fun puzzle selections. Ages 7-12+

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Bond Online

Bond 11 plus CEM test papers

Used by thousands of parents and children every year, Bond Online gives your child unlimited access to thousands of 11+ questions and is a fun and engaging way of helping your child prepare for the 11+. Age 9+

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The Parents' Guide to the 11+

Bond 11 plus 10 minute tests

The essential manual for all parents whose children are about to embark on their 11+ exam journey. Written by an experienced 11+ tutor, this guide offers a practical 4-step approach to guide you through the entire process.

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Tips for parents

Verbal reasoning is not taught as part of the National Curriculum in state schools so it’s important to practise these kinds of questions at home. This will build your child’s confidence and help familiarise them with a style of testing that they won’t experience at school.

Here are some ideas for you to try at home in order to help your child prepare for their verbal reasoning 11+ exam.

Year 4 – check up on basic skills during the summer term and use the summer holidays to develop logical thinking and problem solving skills.

  • Play word games such as Scrabble® and complete crosswords to improve your child’s word knowledge
  • Play dictionary games and encourage your child to create anagrams to improve their word sorting skills and test their knowledge of the alphabet
  • Use logic puzzle books and complete numerical problems such as Sudoku to test verbal and numerical logic

Year 5 – this is the time to start regular 11+ revision and practice. Support your child by:

  • Establishing a regular weekly routine for practice – little and often is usually best
  • Playing word games to further develop their knowledge of vocabulary and synonyms, as well as their logical thinking skills. Suggest a word to your child and ask them to find a word that is opposite then similar to it, or a game where you suggest a pair of words and your child tried to find the common link.

Free resources