Getting into Brisbane State High School after Not Passing the First Round

I wanted to share with you great news - one of our students who went through the online course after not getting accepted into Brisbane State High School in the first round of the Academic test (students sit this exam in Grade 5) got an offer in Grade 6.  Here is her mother’s happy response after she got accepted.


On assessment, this student was very bright.  She was at the top of her class and her mathematics test results placed her in the top percentile of the ICAS (the ICAS is a national mathematics test).  Her academic scores and her results in the Year 5 Brisbane State High School test didn’t match up…and I was baffled.  Schools often say that ‘you can’t study for the test’ or they would assert that a student this bright would normally get an offer without any tuition.  The idea that many schools push and also the that the Department of Education pushes is this: ‘You can’t study for the test’.  I feel that the notion is based on a flawed assumption that the exam paper is so intelligently designed that it can naturally gauge your ability along with separating students who have ‘learned’ how to do practice questions and those who can naturally solve it.  The test paper does nothing of the sort, it just takes your results and gives you a score.

The successful results of this student after doing a online course demonstrates that it makes sense to prepare for an exam.  An exam, especially scholarship and selective school exams, test your ability and academic potential through being able to answer a series of questions based on speed.  Speed and strategy can be honed through practice.  An example is the UMAT test.  The UMAT is an entrance test for students wanting to get into medicine and dentistry university courses.  The UMAT tests general ability and people practice for it!  They do practice questions to familiarise themselves with the structure of the test and potentially the types of questions they may be asked in the exam.  This practice makes them better prepared and allows them to answer questions with speed!

So… what were the things that this student did differently to get an offer the second time round (in Grade 6)?

  • Exam preparation - there was a direct and conscious effort to do exam preparation in an ordered and regular way.  Through our online courses, she was guided on what to learn, how to do things and how to approach questions along with managing time.  Previously, the only preparation this student did consisted of doing practice questions.  Did you know there there is a way to do practice questions properly?  If you don’t know, please check out my blog post on doing practice questions.
  • Writing strategy - This student’s writing always had perfect grammar and spelling.  The way in which her writing was structured and organised needed to be fixed up so that her writing was more appealing to the reader.  Sometimes you need a keen eye to fix up your writing and guide in the right way.  This student was fantastic, she implemented all the feedback given and asked heaps of questions.

Next: This Girl Got into MacRob - A Selective School...So What's Her Secret?


Simran October 24, 2015

Which online courses did you use?

Reed February 05, 2016

Please get your writing proof read before offering help in good writing...I have checked this on for you,...."The way it which the writing was structured and.....

Thinker March 08, 2016

That sentences is perfectly fine.

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