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Friday, August 14, 2009

Types of Eleven Plus Questions

A story that is often told relates how a dear woman remarked: “That Mrs. So and So thinks she knows so much. She keeps talking about the intelligence quota of children. We all know that I.Q. stands for intelligence quiz.”

Factors that make up intelligence must include the aptitude to be able to do well in tests. We know that certain eleven plus children can do well in some tasks or test questions – but not so comfortably in tests covering different tasks.

For many years it was felt that intelligence covered five major groups:

Convergent thinking
Divergent thinking

While children are working through eleven plus tests we can see evidence of all these different types of intelligence. Cognition means discovery or recognition. We can see a child discovering am answer or a solution – and the rush of pleasure of pleasure that accompanies the solution. Memory includes remembering how to do a certain types of question. Convergent thinking includes focusing to find an answer to a problem. Divergent thinking is to do with a child casting around to find an answer. Evaluation comes into the equation when the child feels a need to provide a timely solution.

The thinking comes from a psychologist called Guildford writing in 1958. He gave examples of cognition as:

“Rearrange the letters to make real words RACIH, KLCCO.”

Guildford also suggested test items like:

“Put the vowels in the following blanks to make real words.

P_ W_ R

C_ RN_ N.”

Similar questions to these still occur in some eleven plus papers.

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