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Thread: The Guide To Applying For A Selective School

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    The Guide To Applying For A Selective School

    What is a Selective School?
    http://www.schools.nsw.edu.au/gotosc...iveschools.php
    Partial Selective: Comprehensive Students and Selective Students
    Fully Selective: ONLY Selective Students

    How do I apply for a selective school(s)?
    Year 7 entry into these schools is determined by the student's results in the Selective High School Placement Test in English (including reading and writing), mathematics and general ability, together with their primary school's assessment of their performance in English and mathematics. Other evidence of academic merit may also be considered. Entry into Years 8 to 12 is determined using criteria developed by each school's selection committee.
    Students in Year 6 are able to take the selective high school placement test at designated test centres across New South Wales.
    For more information, visit the link below:
    http://www.schools.nsw.edu.au/learni...sampletest.php
    For Years 8 to 12 entry into selective schools, students do not take a test, but apply directly to a school for entry.
    http://www.schools.nsw.edu.au/learni...ective8_12.php

    Introduction:
    The main reason for why I wanted to write this guide is to assist future students in their quest to applying for selective schools during their high school years. This guide will contain some of my own experiences and any tips/hints that I have gained along the way from others within this community/forum. Quite a few of us have been disappointed when we failed to make it into a partial or fully selective school in Year 6 but as long as you are willing to put in the effort, you have many chances left during your high school career. Hopefully, this guide will be able to help you achieve/accomplish your goal and please spread it around if it was of some use to you. This guide was designed to help students intending to apply for selective schools and do not know where they can get information on their questions/issues. And I was once like that as well.

    Here's my story:
    So I did the Year 6 Selective Placement test in 2007 and managed to receive reserve spots for Tempe High School and Macquarie Fields High School, both of which are partial selective schools. Eventually, Macquarie Fields High School sent me an offer and I accepted it! My other choices on my list were Sydney Technical and Sefton, both of which I received no offers at all.
    In Year 9 (2010), I applied for Year 10 entry into Sydney Technical High School but I was declined. I already knew that I was most likely not going to make it because my Year 8 Yearly report and my Year 9 Half-Yearly report was not as brilliant as other candidates.
    In Year 10 (2011), I applied for Year 11 entry into Sydney Technical and Hurlstone Agricultural and was accepted by both schools! This time around, I had a pretty decent Year 9 Yearly report but it was all thanks to my brilliant Year 10 Half-Yearly report (6As [including As in English, Science, Maths], 2Bs) which contributed quite a lot to my application into both schools. I tried my best in the placement tests held by both schools and throughout the year(s) to achieve better report marks. I ended up choosing Sydney Technical High School, respecting my father's decisions (he prefers STHS over HAHS), and I should be attending STHS as a Year 11 student in 2012! I hope you can find a bit of inspiration from my personal story and keep on striving in your studies!
    Note: Hurlstone Agricultural and Sydney Technical are both fully selective schools.

    Here are some typical questions:
    So I didn't do so well in the Year 6 Selective Placement test and I was not able to make it into any of schools on my list. I still really want to attend a selective school but is it all over for me?

    Of course not! Never fear, because nearly everything can be accomplished through different alternatives! You can apply for Year 8 entry all the way up to Year 12 entry, depending on the school (a majority of selective schools only allow up to Year 11 entry). If you apply for the same school(s) every year then you increase your chances of making it in!
    Is there a fee involved?
    Yes and no as it all depends on the school that you are trying out for!
    Fees are usually used to cover any administrative issues involved in the school's selection process which includes marking the entrance test amongst other things.
    What is considered to be a 'good' academic report?
    Consistent grades, being equally as good in EVERY SUBJECT and improvement!
    How important are extra-cirricular achievements?
    Very important, as they give you an edge over students who perform equally as well in terms of academics but lack in extra-cirriculars! However, to be honest, I certainly lacked quite a bit in terms of extra-cirriculars but I still had some which was better than none.
    What is involved in the entry and selection process?
    Depends on the school but here are some examples:
    NOTE: The selection/entry process for each school may change every now and then (next year could be different to the previous)

    Sefton High School
    - Involves handing in any recent half-yearly or yearly reports, awards or any extra-cirricular achievements. Then you may be selected to go onto the next stage where you will attend an interview with the principal or deputy principal from what I've heard. Same entry process from Years 8 - 12 entry.
    No tests involved. (This information about Sefton is from what I've heard NOT from my personal experiences)

    Sydney Technical High School
    Year 8 to 10 entry: Similar to the above. So no test involved until entry into Year 11!
    Year 11 entry (process may change in different years): You hand in everything like usual (e.g. reports, NAPLAN, etc.) and the school will select the top 20ish applicants and all other applicants are advised to re-try again next year. Then these top 20ish applicants will take a test which consists of usually a mathematical section and a writing/english section.
    Mathematical Section: Usually involves questions based on your harder Year 9 Theory/content or basic Year 10 Theory/content. I'd suggest you do questions from math competitions, study your Year 9 maths content (Level 2 or 3 would do) and apparently in previous years, the mathematical section had some scientific questions mixed in so it's similar to UMAT type questions but easier of course.
    Writing Task: I had to do an essay on how an author has finely crafted a novel to bring great enjoyment to the reader (something along those lines because I can't remember the exact question) and the year before had to do a short story or narrative so creative writing, I think. I'd suggest you carefully read and study a novel within the weeks before the test day. Also, during your travel to the school for the test, I highly recommend that you read a book so that you can come up with/recall good ideas during the examination period since they are still fresh in your mind whether those ideas be quotes/examples for the essay or a story idea/usuable descriptive language or techniques!
    Immediately after the test, each applicant was called up to the deputy principal's office to do an interview! I remembered being interviewed by two staff members (deputy principal and another staff member/teacher if I can recall properly). They asked each applicant questions and about subject selections. I'd advise you to practise a mock interview with your friends to boost your confidence!
    Then within a few weeks after the test-day, you will receive a letter notifying you whether you were successful or you will be placed on a waiting list (reserve). So around 10 to 15 students out of the 25ish applicants will receive an offer for placement at the school next year, the rest receive either reserve spots or decline.
    Year 8 to 10 entry: Around 1 or 2 students are accepted for each year group
    Year 11 entry: Around 10 to 15 students are accepted according to sths's website but around 20 may be more exact.

    Hurlstone Agricultural High School
    Same entry process for Year 8 to 11/12 entry: Hand in those applications which will include reports, NAPLAN, extra cirricular, etc. and any other applications involved in the process.
    Then ALL applicants in each entry year will do a test which consists of science, maths and english/writing components. (2011 format)
    Apparently, the test has changed recently, in 2010 and the years before the test was the same one every year according to my friends.
    So in 2011, new and different tests were made for every year group.
    Science: Reading/interpreting graphs, tables and scientific information to answer questions.
    Maths: Year 9 content was quite abundant in the Year 10 test but study any recent mathematical content and revise on knowledge from previous years
    English: Comprehension, grammar/punctuation and essay writing. The short answer comprehension questions and the essay question was linked to an extract which was related to AGRICULTURE.
    Be PREPARED FOR ANYTHING!
    Later on, you will be notified whether you are selected for the next stage or you are advised to try out again next year!
    The next stage is the interview and come to the interview with some of these questions in mind:
    - What is a book that you have recently read?
    - What do you know about Hurlstone?
    - What do you want to know about Hurlstone?
    - Why do you want to do Agriculture?
    - What extra-cirrular achievements do you have?
    Then a letter will be sent out notifying whether you have been accepted or not! There will be a bundle of applications regarding your enrolment inside your letter package of your success in receiving an offer!
    Year 8 to 10 entry acceptance rate: Approx. 3 to 5 for each year group
    Year 11 entry acceptance rate: 20ish

    When does this all happen?
    The school will notify you of any test dates, otherwise - check the link below (under 'Entry in [insert year]'):
    http://www.schools.nsw.edu.au/learni...ective8_12.php

    Quote Originally Posted by RivalryofTroll View Post
    I'll put this here for reference - relevant to all the STHS and HAHS applicants.

    2011 dates (back when I applied for both schools)

    HAHS
    --> Applications closed on the 22nd July, 2011.
    --> Entrance examination WAS on the 30th July, 2011.
    I.e. reports + entrance exam was during LATE JULY

    --> Received INTERVIEW offer letter after the 8th September, 2011.
    --> Actual interview WAS on the 19th September, 2011.
    I.e. Interview was mid-ish SEPTEMBER.

    --> OFFER OF A PLACEMENT letter WAS received after the 21st of October, 2011.
    I.e. Expect your acceptance letter in LATE OCTOBER.

    STHS
    --> ''You have been selected to proceed to the next stage of consideration. This will be an interview and a maths problem-solving task and a writing task.'' LETTER was received after the 1st of August, 2011.
    I.e. Expect your acceptance to 2nd stage or immediate rejection letter in EARLY AUGUST.

    In 2011:
    Test was on Monday 15th August, 2011. Time: Arrive at 10.45 to start at 11.00 am.
    Time of interview for me was 12.30 pm but might differ for different people.

    --> Final acceptance/reserve/rejection letter was received after the 19th August, 2011.
    I.e. expect this letter like mid-ish or LATE August.
    What type of content is usually assessed within entrance exams?
    Usually depends on the school but there should be a mathematical and a writing/english component(s) at most schools. Some schools will add in an extra component which is usually something dealing with general ability or science. DO NOT STUDY CONTENT THAT IS AHEAD OF WHAT YOU ARE MEANT TO BE DOING AT YOUR YEAR LEVEL FOR THESE ENTRANCE EXAMS! For example, if you are in Year 10, don't start studying calculus (differentiation) or trigonometric identities for these exams because they usually test previous years' knowledge or recent content. Common mathematical topics can range from surd and indices to basic trigonometry or even geometry/co-ordinate geometry! The basic rule of thumb would be:
    If you are in Year 10, then study your late year 9 content and early year 10 content.
    If you are in Year 9, then study your late year 8 content and early year 9 content.
    If you are in Year 8, then study your late year 7 content and early year 8 content.
    If you are in Year 7, revise any year 7 work that you have done and do selective practice papers from Year 6 (mainly the maths section or even G.A.)

    How many schools am I allowed to try out for?
    You are allowed to write a list of a maximum of 3 schools (previously 4 schools). To maximise your chances of success, I'd advise you to use up all three choices/options! The reason for this is that if you don't manage to make it into your most wanted school, you still have a shot at offers from the other schools that you applied for! In other words, having a back-up plan. For example, I applied for both Sydney Technical and Hurlstone Agricultural because I wanted a back-up which was Hurlstone (in case I didn't make it to Syd Tech).
    Which school(s) should I try out for?
    It is recommended that you enrol into schools that are closer to home so there will be less travellling involved each day. Choosing the closer school is usually the wiser option!
    My question isn't listed above....
    If you have any further questions about the entry process, the different type of selective schools or a specific school(s), etc, post them below and I or other people should be able to answer it for you!

    HANDY HINTS:
    - Have a healthy diet within the week!
    - Have enough sleep the night before the test day if there is one!
    - Use the toilet before the test begins, if there is one! You don't want to waste any of the time available!
    - Be organised
    - Studying is the best form of test preparation but doing random-related questions can also help!
    Test-Related TIPS:
    - Read and analyse a novel within the week! (This will help you in some way in my opinion)
    - Do random math questions within the week! (Previous years' content)
    - Learn the tricks and trades of each text type and write samples to improve your writing! Have a possible story in mind or possible characters, just in case because creative writing is quite common!
    - Study throughout the whole year, put in the commitment if you desire good results!
    - USE UP ALL YOUR TIME! There are people who finish about 20 minutes early and just sit there doing nothing or sleeping... Usually, these students are the ones who are not successful in gaining a placement... If you have extra time, use it on double-checking all your questions OR use the time to add more info. to your writing task! KEEP WRITING is a wise option at times! Work until they say 'pens down'!
    - If there is multiple choice involved, answer all of them! Guess a random one or using the process of elimination if you have to!
    - FILL UP EVERY LINE! Quantity can make quality!
    Application TIPS:
    - Try your best to achieve good marks for EVERY subject for your yearly and half yearly report(s).
    - If you achieved brilliant results in something such as NAPLAN or competitions then include those!
    - Include everything that you can possibly think of that is worthy of praise!
    Interview TIPS:
    - Practise with your friends!
    - Make a list of predicted questions and think of an answer for each one!
    - Ask people who have tried out for that school in previous years!
    - Practise your communication skills!

    These are some good Matrix articles to check out:
    - http://www.matrix.edu.au/how-i-got-i...se-in-year-11/
    - http://www.matrix.edu.au/how-to-ente...-in-year-8-12/

    Any feedback on how to improve the guide, the quality of the guide and what to add is welcomed!


    COMMENTS FROM OTHER STUDENTS


    Quote Originally Posted by elemental hero View Post
    Guide to applying for a selective high school 2nd edition
    Please Note- This guide is similar to that of another member called RivalryofTroll.Check out that guide on this link. The Guide To Applying For A Selective School
    This is my own guide , a slightly different take and story. I hope that you will draw inspiration from my advice and story.
    What is a selective high school: A selective high school from my perspective is a school where a student is presented with challenges, opportunities and resources and environment needed to enhance learning and perform to his/her maximum academic potential in a like minded environment.
    Note: The guides target audience constitutes of students applying for selective high schools yr8-11 entry but is also relevant to those doing the year 6 selective test.
    Applying for a selective high school: In year 6, students take a selective test where they are tested on logic, problem solving and comprehension. The student preferences their school and is successful or unsuccessful depending on whether their results have met the cut off. However in year 8-11, it’s a slightly different story.
    Applying for a selective high school yr8-11: Applying in years 8-11 vastly varies upon schools where some schools require tests whilst others only require reports and other specific documents. Visit the Matrix education website for more information: http://www.schools.nsw.edu.au/learni...sampletest.php
    Introduction
    The main reason, which inspired me to write this guide is for me to contemplate upon my story and hopefully inspire you as well as give tips/hints to successfully achieve a placement at a selective high school. Any person who is reading this guide is someone who shows initiative and aspires to get into a fully/partially selective high school.
    My Story
    I started of doing the selective test in 2009. I had foolishly applied for schools such as Sydney Boys , which I knew deep down, I had no hope of getting placement. I ended up accepting a newly partially selective school which required s 170-180 cut off in selective. However this by no means instigates a bleak future. I found that my year's cohort was extremely intelligent and many of whom I saw improve so much over one year. I tried for SBHS, Hurlstone and Sydney tech throughout years 7 to Year 9. All these years being unsuccessful. This bleak prospect was upsetting but not the end of the world. Things started to change when I reached the epitomy of my academic potential in year 9 and 10 as after putting in more hours of study, I achieved straight A reports. This was coupled with a balance of music and sport outside school. IT’S POSSIBLE AND I STILL HAD A SOCIAL LIFE. Finally, I put all my eggs in one basket and tried out for 3 schools for year 11 entry and I knew this was my final shot. All of which I was given an offer. The schools: Both Hurlstone and Sydney Technical High School. I declined Hurlstone and Sydney tech and accepted another school which is fully selective ranked in the top 10 in NSW.
    Strongly recommend trying for Hurlstone, Sydney Technical High School. Sydney Boys/Sydney Girls, St George Girls and Fort Street High School if you don’t already go there.
    Advice and Recommendations
    The moment you gain entrance to a selective school, JOIN CO-CURRICULAR ACTIVITIES. For example, I did Karate, Cricket, swimming and Piano. Try to balance out your lifestyle and do your best every year even if you are not successful as eventually you will be rewarded with a satisfactory outcome. Co-curricular activities are highly valued in selective schools and the depth of an individual’s extra curricular's could influence whether you do or do not get a seat into a selective high school.SELECTION COMMITTEE’S LOVE STUDENTS WHO GET GREAT IN ACADEMICS WHLST ALSO DOING INNUMERABLE extra curriculurs(TRUST ME!).
    A good chance vs a bad chance: A student who demonstrates active participation in co-curriculars and sport whilst performing well in his/her academic report has the best chance of getting into any school. A decent report in my opinion is about 5A's and 2B's out of a possible 7 subjects. A 'C 'will substantially lower your chances of getting into a school. Furthermore, a great report does not necessarily relegate to a successful outcome as it is important to be succinct in your application, especially when applying for schools like Sydney Boys, Sydney Girls or Sydney technical high school where you have to list anything and EVERYTHING that you think MAKES YOU STAND OUT IN YOUR APPLICATION.
    Applying for Specific Selective Schools from my experience or knowledge(Tips/Hints)
    Macquarie Fields High School: This school, to my knowledge having friends who applied, involves doing a test and handing in reports. The test is supposedly based on logic, comprehension and your year level extension mathematics. Same entry process from Years 8 - 11 entry.
    Sefton High School: Involves handing in any recent half-yearly or yearly reports, awards or any extra-curricular achievements. Then you may be selected to go onto the next stage where you will attend an interview with the principal or deputy principal from what I've heard. Same entry process from Years 8 - 11 entry.
    Sydney Technical High School : Sydney technical high school is consistent in application till year 10. From years 8-10, it involves handing in academic reports and filling out a form highlighting achievements as well as handing in certificates. If successful then an interview is offered. Normally 2 spots available. Then when applying for yr 11 it involves handing in reports and DOING A TEST followed by an interview. In yr 11 for Syndey Tech there is between 20-30 SPOTS!!!!!!!. Furthermore, what many people DON"T KNOW IS that only the TOP 30 applicants from yr 11 applicants every year get to do the test. NOT EVERYONE!!!!!. SO GET A GOOD REPORT AND TRUST ME ITS SUPER EASY TO GET PLACEMENT IF U GET TO THE TESTING STAGE. The test is on a creative writing or essay writing piece. Just read books and learn good vocabulary words to practice. Then the math is on WESTPAC/ICAS style hard questions and learns your entire year's yr 10 mathematics content 5.3 Math. When I did it, the tests were only half an hour each and interview was with TWO PEOPLE. YR 11 is the best and easiest time to get into ANY SCHOOL AS THERE ARE NUMEROUS VACANCIES . Normally from 20-30 depending on the school.
    Hurlstone Agricultural High School: This SCHOOL IS ALL ABOUT HOW WELL U DO ON THE TEST. There is a test for every year and ENSURE you submit both reports required as well as at least 5 extra curricular activity certificates with the application. I cannot recall specifics of whats in the tests but here's advice. Advice: Each hurlstone test constitutes of SCIENCE, Math and English in that order. For years 8 and 9 entry the tests it is mainly logic but study Australian Mathematics Comp(Westpac) tests for the math and practise writing a letter or interview transcript for writing.For years 10 to 11 entry, learn all of the 5.2/5.3 math textbook content if doing the yr 10 test and learn the 5.3 content from the yr 10 textbook if doing the yr 11 entrance test. In addition, just study some agricultural jargon and language to use in your writing piece . Once again in YR 11 there is roughly 20 spots or MORE!!!!!. GO FOR IT. I was unsuccessful every year till yr 10 and finally for yr 11 I was earned an interview. Do not get disheartened if you don't get in as eventually you will, with the right amount of hard work. If successful, an interview will be offered. I would assume, the application is mainly 70% test and 20% report and 10% interview. They care heaps more about the test but still get a good report.
    The GIrls Schools e.g Sydney Girls, St George Girls.Hornsby Girls and North Sydney Girls: I'm not a girl , hence have not applied for these schools. However, I strongly recommend trying for St George Girls and Sydey Girls if you have strong co- curriculurs and a good almost straight A report as there are 20 spots in yr 11. I believe in Hornsby and North Sydney Girls there is a test.
    North Sydney Boys, North Sydney Girls, Sydney Boys, Sydney Girls,Fort Street, Ruse and Baulko: These higher end schools are definitely more competitive and normally about 100-200 people try out for these schools each year from each year group. I strongly recommend trying out for FORT STREET EVERY YEAR from Year 7.All you have to do is write an essay and hand in a decent report and your in. There is only 2 spots but if your essay is excellent (you do it at home) then you get accepted after an interview. In yr 11 entrance for Fort Street and most other schools listed above requires a challenging test.
    Test-Related TIPS:
    - It is important to cover all your years content and the year before in order to ace the tests given in selective school.
    -Start studing a novel at the start of the year at home and use spark notes as it is crucial to improve essay writing and improve VOCABULARY. Recommended books) Frankenstein(hard to read but my personal favourite) and Animal Farm(Most probably will do at school)Lovely book.
    -Any exam with multiple choice should be answered carefully and use the elimination method. If you don't know the anwer, guess the best possible answer that you firmly believe makes sense. This is my way.
    -Any test with essays or writing is vital to complete. E.g Hurlstone test- save time for the writing question at the end. Allow at least 30 minutes to write a decent writing piece at the end. My favourite quote from RivalryofTroll," Keep writing till pens down and quantity and quality both equal good writing."
    -Eat healthy before the test, drink water and go toilet before test starts. REMINDER: If doing Hurlstone test, go toilet at the nearest Maccas beforehand as it won't be possible to go at the school as you are not given an opportunity.
    Application TIPS:
    - Good marks reflect a academically talented student.However remember( Selective schools have innumerable nerds, thus committees also look for students who are well rounded in sport and co-curriculars)
    - If you achieved brilliant results in something such as NAPLAN or competitions then include those in application
    - Finally, TELL THE TRUTH. Cannot emphasise enough as all EVIDENCE will have to be produced in the Interview and you can't lie to the interviewer.
    Interview TIPS:
    - Practise with your friends!
    - Make a MOck Interview Questions list
    Questions that Most PROBABLY will be ASKED IN INTERVIEW- I personally did 2 interviews: Sydney tech interview Example Below.
    - What do you do at a weekly basis?
    - Why Sydney Tech/why do you want to attend sydney tech?
    - What can you do for STHS?
    - If a teacher were to write a reference, what would he/she write about?
    - Did you take the selective test in Year 6?
    -what can you bring to our school?
    -what are your hobbies?
    -what are your aspirations in life?
    -Do you have a Back Up plan?(important)
    -how do you think you went in your test/comments on your report
    - Possibly something regarding your subject selection ...
    - Make sure you ask questions about the school (Pretty much anything, even if you don't really care) because that shows you have an interest at this school, as well as some sort of curiosity.
    - MAKE SURE YOU KEEP EYE CONTACT ON THE TEACHER(S) AT ALL TIMES. Shows that you are confident in front of them.

    GOOD LUCK. Hope this helped
    From a Hurlstone applicant (exam taken in 2014):
    Quote Originally Posted by wiliaamnguuyen View Post
    Hurlstone entrance exam started off with Science questions like plotting a graph using information given and then we had another graph to answer the hypothesis, independent variables etc. Next was the Math section. Mostly year 9 harder questions like expanding surds, surd rationalising, equation factorising and simplifying. All was dealt with numbers and not problem solving (thank god). Afterwards were comprehension based on a text. After that was extended response on the potential future career. How you would help contribute to the agriculture given problem. And explain what your idea is to contribute to solving the problem.
    Entrance exams taken in 2014 (for Year 11 2015 Entry) for Normanhurst and Sydney Tech.

    Normanhurst:
    Quote Originally Posted by PleaseCompleteTheReq View Post
    More like a traditional exam. Sydney Tech had like 25min exams with 20 questions and only a writing task.

    Maths was pretty easy, just a bit of everything. Easier than Tech surprisingly.
    English was comprehension + writing, which I'm pretty sure that I did great in. Comprehension was about this article by Jon Landau about rock and roll music or something. Writing topic was a suggestion of a book to be included in next year's syllabus to the English coordinator.
    Sydney Tech English task (2014 entrance exam):
    Quote Originally Posted by PleaseCompleteTheReq View Post
    Caption: Now that I've got you all together, let me take a photo (something like that)
    Image: A high school graduation photo
    From a Hornsby Girls applicant in 2014 for 2015 entry:

    Quote Originally Posted by vanessa77 View Post
    I received an acceptance letter around the 12th of September (I'm not 100% sure of the date).
    Comments from a Hurlstone applicant in 2014:

    Quote Originally Posted by Papercutter View Post
    I just came back from the interview part so I thought I might also add more stuff to this thread for others who also want to apply to a selective school.
    RivalryofTroll covered pretty much the scope of the application process, but I'll try add some more to it, only more about hurlstone

    The Hurlstone entrance exam is essentially the first step, and what comes after is the interview! The interview will most likely be with the Principal or the Deputy Principal and they take about 10-20 minutes, usually 15minutes on average. The very first thing you'll be asked is why you want to come to Hurlstone. Then they'll follow with other questions like:
    -What do you do in your spare time?
    -What extracurricular activities or leadership roles have you been a part of?
    -What is your most/least favourite subject and why?
    -What are your future plans?
    -How do you study (personally, not as a general question)?
    -Do you know anyone in this school or does/has a sibling went to Hurlstone (they'll ask you for the year they graduated)?

    They not only ask you questions, but they will explain a lot of what goes on at their school. So for example, they will tell you the courses they offer, what extracurricular activities they have and also about the farm! Lastly they'll ask you if you have any questions concerning the school, this is a really good chance to show them that you are curious, so ask at least something, even if it's simple.

    Tips for the interview:
    -Arrive early, maybe 10 minutes before the scheduled time
    -Go to the toilet beforehand, the last thing you want is to need to go when they are talking to you
    -Eat something and drink some water before you leave home
    -Bring along a folder with your awards/reports etc if you want (not really necessary)
    -SMILE! Be happy and show they how much you look forward to going
    -Try not to look at your watch (you'll appear as though you have a better place to go to and this will leave a bad impression)
    -Dress neatly, plenty of people arrive also in their school uniform
    -Be honest, they can definitely tell if you are lying
    -Make eye contact and try not to fidget too much (I made a mistake of doing this)
    -If they ask you about your current school, dont bad mouth it, chances are, they might wonder if you'll talk badly of the school next.

    It's alright to be nervous (I was freaked out just earlier today!). Also Ag is compulsory from Year 7-10 but they won't force you to do it in senior years, they do strongly recommend and encourage you to try it though! If you are doing accelerated maths at your current school, or you are wanting to do accelerated at Hurlstone, you'll have to talk to the Head Teacher for maths and he or she will discuss whether you should do it or not.

    It's all I can think of right now, a lot of the stuff is probably already said in the original post but I might have been a little too detailed!
    Good luck to all that have applied this year and to those wanting to apply in the future!
    Comments on Fort Street Year 11 2015 Entry:
    Quote Originally Posted by falances View Post
    Hi!! I applied for Fort St Year 11 2015 last year. Both sections were divided in 45 minutes each. From what I remember in terms of content, the English one had about 10 multiple choice, a few short answers and a long extended response. You can't really prepare for it in any way, except to read a lot, brush up on your essay techniques, literary techniques etc. It's pretty unpredictable in my opinion. There were some sections of comprehension, techniques and essay writing. For the Maths section, there was so much more. 25 multiple choice and a whole bunch of short answer maths questions, all from different topics of varying difficulty (I'd say the difficulty would be about 5.3 Maths to mid-prelim content).

    Time management is a big issue for this entrance exam. Don't feel too bad if you don't finish either/both of the exams. Lots of people struggle to finish and it's totally okay. One of my friends didn't do like 3 pages and he's one of the top performing students in 5.3 Maths. I feel like this entrance exam is meant to put people off and test how well they perform under extreme time constraints.

    Also, not to add extra pressure, but this entrance exam is what determines like 90% of your entrance. Out of the performers of the exam, they choose a handful of people who perform better than the others, and from there on they look at reports, co-curricular and your essay. Once you get through to that stage, I'd say you're pretty much in or on the reserve list.

    The essay you prepare at home is usually based off a recent current affairs issue or something related to Australian politics (from previous experience). They want to see how well you keep up with the news and how mature you are in terms of conveying your opinions in an eloquent manner.

    If you want/need any more help or tips, I'm happy to help! Just PM me ^_^ Good luck !!
    James Ruse 2016 Entry Information:
    Quote Originally Posted by hunterbear View Post
    Fort Street applicant:
    Quote Originally Posted by eyeseeyou View Post
    Hey, I applied for Fort Street last year, but sadly I didn't get in

    Firstly looking at your post, it seems that you've got a pretty good report however the half yearly report for year 10 is coming up so do well in that and be aware that you're going to be ranked against other students.

    Regarding out of school achievements, I think they would be helpful but I don't think you need them in order to make it in fort street, I mean it will help you rank higher, however the main priority is the entrance exam, your essay the school sets as well as your yearly and half yearly report (My friend got in and from memory he didn't do any extra curriculars out of school however, he did quite well in the entrance exam and had good reports)

    Well, if you would like a competitive edge in senior years (and you really hate your current school), then yeah go for it. I mean going to a selective school seems less embarrassing then going to a partially selective school

    Regarding your chances, you seem to have quite a high chance but like I said in my post, you need to get a good half yearly report for year 10, good entrance test results and a good essay piece and be aware that you are ranked with a lot of other students

    Now regarding the entrance exam:

    There is an english component worth 45 minutes and there is a maths component also worth 45 minutes

    English:
    1. Comprehension questions based on a novel extract (some Arab kills novel extract). This is the multiple choice section and this part of the english section assesses your basic comprehension skills in junior years and pretty much how well you're going to do in senior comprehension (analysing). In order to prepare for this, I recommend practicing your comprehension through past school certificate papers and doing comprehension questions as well as brushing up your language techniques
    2. Wikipedia Article on "Social Isolation". This is the short answer part of the exam. Some of the questions asked were "summarise this article in your own words", "what does multidimensionality mean", and "name 2 language techniques and their examples. Why has the composer used this technique". Again this is to assess your understanding of junior english and how you would cope in senior english. To prepare for this section, try practicing questions and do past paper school certificate questions. Also study your analysis of the language techniques
    3. Visual texts. One is an image of a guy who is excluded in some graffiti area. There is also one other image where there are a group of guys in a circle putting all their hands in like you'd see in a sporting team. This part of the test assesses your understanding of the basic Visual texts and how you would do well in Senior english visual texts.
    Questions: Describe one of the images
    How has the composer conveyed these ideas in the 2 pictures
    To prepare for this section, you must do past certificate paper questions and do other practice questions regarding Visual texts
    4. Extended response
    This was the bit that stuffed me up in the test. "Compose and original piece advocating the minority of the group who are socially isolated against and try to advocate their rights" (something along those lines)
    Yes, the examiners have put this question in in order to assess those who truly understand the difficulties of both junior and senior english. I feel that this type of question assesses the top students and separates them from the bottom students
    This is a hard one to prepare for (this was exactly the same question in the year 10 fort street yearly). I suggest trying to make your own "compose and original piece question" so then you can get used to doing the harder questions. Revise a lot on your text types and practice writing effective ones. Try doing text types with both stimulus and non stimulus. This is what will prepare you best

    Maths:
    Maths is mostly 5.3 questions. In order to do well in them, do past school certificate papers and attempt the harder questions
    Some are multiple choice some aren't. I will list the topics assessed below

    1. Algebra
    2. Indices and Surds
    3. Measurement, Surface area and volume
    4. Consumer arithmetic (year 10+9)
    5. Equations
    6. Co ordinate geometry graphs
    7. Graphs (time graphs, physics graphs-moving about)
    8. Statitics (everything in general)
    9. Simultaneous equations (not in test but I reccommend you study it anyway)
    10. Geometry
    11. Triginometry (both right angle and non right angle)
    12. Quadratic equations
    13. Probability (recommended)
    14. Similarity (recommended)
    15. Congruency
    16. Non right angle trig (recommended)
    17. Circle geometry (recommended)
    18. ICAS+AMC style questions

    Circle geo+Logs+Polynomials+functions are all recommended to study

    In order to do well your half yearly report, you need to study harder as well as doing past papers, if you can find any if not just make your own past papers

    Hope that helps

    Best of luck

    Regards,

    eyeseeyou
    Last edited by RivalryofTroll; 3 Jul 2016 at 2:48 PM.
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    Junior Member ZeeZee3's Avatar
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    Re: The Guide To Applying For A Selective School

    Wow, very informative and helpful. Maybe you should explain the marks needed for placement and also past cut-off marks for each selective school. BTW, I go to tech too so might see you next year.
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    Re: The Guide To Applying For A Selective School

    Quote Originally Posted by ZeeZee3 View Post
    Wow, very informative and helpful. Maybe you should explain the marks needed for placement and also past cut-off marks for each selective school. BTW, I go to tech too so might see you next year.
    Oh okay. Thanks for the feedback.
    I literally know no-one from Syd Tech so I have to start fresh D:
    May I ask, how strong is the year ten cohort of this year in terms of academics?
    I've heard that Tech has quite alot of extremely smart people in this year's year ten cohort but then there are quite a few people who are quite weak in terms of academics as well.....
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    Re: The Guide To Applying For A Selective School

    +1 Rep

    Very good advice for those who are seeking enrolment to a selective school. Too late for me but others will find this information of significant value.
    Last edited by Absolutezero; 3 Dec 2011 at 11:08 PM.
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    Re: The Guide To Applying For A Selective School

    Quote Originally Posted by passionxmusic View Post
    +1 Rep

    Very good advice for those who are seeking enrolment to a selective school. Too late for me but others will find this information of significant value.
    Thanks for the feedback!
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    Re: The Guide To Applying For A Selective School

    Quote Originally Posted by RivalryofTroll View Post
    Oh okay. Thanks for the feedback.
    I literally know no-one from Syd Tech so I have to start fresh D:
    May I ask, how strong is the year ten cohort of this year in terms of academics?
    I've heard that Tech has quite alot of extremely smart people in this year's year ten cohort but then there are quite a few people who are quite weak in terms of academics as well.....
    In maths, very smart cohort, according to 2010 naplan resuits, we came 8th in state. For science, almost as good as maths however not quite there yet. English for our grade is actually not that good, only like 10 students received an A for their report however the head teacher used the raw marks as report mark so no scaling was used. Overall, our grade is quite good but there are a few people who received no A's no B's in their report and most of their report are D's and E's due to laziness. I heard he may not have been legible to complete the school cert. That should be a rough overview of our grade.
    Utimate ATAR goal: 99.95
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    Re: The Guide To Applying For A Selective School

    Quote Originally Posted by ZeeZee3 View Post
    In maths, very smart cohort, according to 2010 naplan resuits, we came 8th in state. For science, almost as good as maths however not quite there yet. English for our grade is actually not that good, only like 10 students received an A for their report however the head teacher used the raw marks as report mark so no scaling was used. Overall, our grade is quite good but there are a few people who received no A's no B's in their report and most of their report are D's and E's due to laziness. I heard he may not have been legible to complete the school cert. That should be a rough overview of our grade.
    Yeah, I've heard that the maths is really strong at Tech which is good! I'm only doing Physics (one science) so it should be fine...
    Thanks for the overview!
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    Re: The Guide To Applying For A Selective School

    For year 11, Sydney Tech accepts ~20 students, not including the students they accept to replace whoever has left.

    Also: @ZeeZee3 Who are you?
    Erase and rewind.

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    Re: The Guide To Applying For A Selective School

    Quote Originally Posted by wildchild666 View Post
    For year 11, Sydney Tech accepts ~20 students, not including the students they accept to replace whoever has left.

    Also: @ZeeZee3 Who are you?
    Thanks for the info!
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    Re: The Guide To Applying For A Selective School

    Nice advice! how bizarre, looks like theres quite of few techs hanging around

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    Re: The Guide To Applying For A Selective School

    Bumping this back up!
    Also, be prepared for a newer, better, improved and smexier version of this guide in the future?!
    *SPOILER ALERT*
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    Re: The Guide To Applying For A Selective School

    Quote Originally Posted by RivalryofTroll View Post
    Bumping this back up!
    Also, be prepared for a newer, better, improved and smexier version of this guide in the future?!
    *SPOILER ALERT*
    Yes! asap!

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    Re: The Guide To Applying For A Selective School

    Quote Originally Posted by RivalryofTroll View Post
    [U]There are people who finish about 20 minutes early and just sit there doing nothing or sleeping...
    Sounds a lot like the School Certificate, eh? ;P
    Erase and rewind.

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    Re: The Guide To Applying For A Selective School

    Quote Originally Posted by wildchild666 View Post
    Sounds a lot like the School Certificate, eh? ;P
    :/
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    Re: The Guide To Applying For A Selective School

    Quote Originally Posted by RivalryofTroll View Post
    :/
    Rivalry, I'm working on it and I've got a fairly large guide, not to give too much away..
    Quote Originally Posted by Kiraken View Post
    Lol fak my uncle just told me I have very distant and slight Greek and arab ancestry mixed in with my paki/Indian heritage

    Dammit why am I still such a nigga

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    Re: The Guide To Applying For A Selective School

    Guide for getting into a private school: SHOW ME DA MONEYYYYY!! (won't work as well for top GPS schools though)

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    Re: The Guide To Applying For A Selective School

    Quote Originally Posted by Bored_of_HSC View Post
    Guide for getting into a private school: SHOW ME DA MONEYYYYY!! (won't work as well for top GPS schools though)
    Ask your dad/mum to become an Actuary, Barrister or Medical Specialist or whatever pays high nowadays!
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    Re: The Guide To Applying For A Selective School

    Quote Originally Posted by theind1996 View Post
    Rivalry, I'm working on it and I've got a fairly large guide, not to give too much away..
    Please make it very detailed!
    And stuff on
    What grades you need
    extracurricular
    what will look good on the application
    whats on the entrance exams and specifically what to topics to study

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    Re: The Guide To Applying For A Selective School

    Quote Originally Posted by mwong View Post
    Please make it very detailed!
    And stuff on
    What grades you need
    extracurricular
    what will look good on the application
    whats on the entrance exams and specifically what to topics to study
    Didn't I reply to your PM and within my reply, I basically answered every question nearly?
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    Re: The Guide To Applying For A Selective School

    Quote Originally Posted by RivalryofTroll View Post
    Didn't I reply to your PM and within my reply, I basically answered every question nearly?
    Aha yeah, mwong should be sure about everything now. I poured all my knowledge into it. Basically for people other than mwong since I'm basically taking apart your guide, adding bits and pieces, revamping it as well as adding WHOLE new things so should be good :P
    Quote Originally Posted by Kiraken View Post
    Lol fak my uncle just told me I have very distant and slight Greek and arab ancestry mixed in with my paki/Indian heritage

    Dammit why am I still such a nigga

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    Re: The Guide To Applying For A Selective School

    Quote Originally Posted by RivalryofTroll View Post
    Didn't I reply to your PM and within my reply, I basically answered every question nearly?
    Lol yeah, but it is always good to get a 2nd opinion

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    Re: The Guide To Applying For A Selective School

    Or 3rd....

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    Re: The Guide To Applying For A Selective School

    Quote Originally Posted by RivalryofTroll View Post
    Thanks for the info!
    that's pretty much with a lot of selective schools in year 11
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    Re: The Guide To Applying For A Selective School

    Hey I was wondering if any selective schools at all accept and consider applicants in year 12. Unfortunately, I missed out on the application for year 11 2014 so I was wondering if it was possible to get in selective for year 12? I am particularly interested in NSB, baulko and Sydney boys

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    Re: The Guide To Applying For A Selective School

    I never noticed this thread before, but this is a great guide Rivalry (a must read for many considering how popular this topic is). Stickied.
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