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

I received this email from the family of a girl who went through our online courses to prepare for the MacRob.


What’s the secret of her getting into MacRob?

Did she prepare years in advance?  Nope.  Did she cram and not do anything else?  Nope.

Actually, there’s no secret.   Just a whole bunch of things that work together.  It’s just simply having a strong base to start with (getting As and B+s) and doing exam preparation and committing yourself to doing it regularly.  But the key is in not about progressing quickly but… about understanding it all.

Like everything that sounds and looks simple, there’s a lot of work that goes on behind the scenes.

So what were the critical success factors for her so that other students and parents wanting to secure a spot at a selective school like MacRob and Melbourne High can learn from:

  • Independent work.  This student independently worked through our online courses.  She learnt by herself but was guided by the online courses.  She read and understood everything within the course.  She didn’t skim through but went through it in detail.
  • Working on her writing.  Writing makes up 1/3 of the exam score because it is 2 components of 6 separately tested components.  The successful student focussed on this and each time honed her writing based on feedback provided to her.
  • Covering all the subjects of the MacRob exam.  The exam covers verbal reasoning, numerical reasoning, mathematics, creative writing, persuasive writing and reading comprehension.  By getting a strong base and doing hard practice questions (not easy repetitive questions over and over again), she was more prepared for the exam.

Hope sharing this helps you and you child in their exam preparation!

Questions/comments - just let us know in the comments below!


Next: How this Child Got a Spot at Perth Modern School


Thaila June 22, 2016

Hi I would like to know more about your online course. My daughter is in year 3 and would like to prepare her for her GATE exam in year 6. Could you please forward me more details. Thanks

Vi from June 24, 2016

Sure Thaila, all the information about our online courses can be found here: There's also a guide that I've prepared about the recommended courses for different types of exams, including the GATE - which is the one for Perth Modern and other selective schools in WA.

Fiona August 15, 2017

Hi, I was wondering how many questions there are and how long I'll have to complete the test (mathematics, verbal reasoning, reading etc.) I'm trying out for Mac Robertson's, by the way. Thanks!

Vi from October 27, 2017

Hi Fiona, Here's an extract from the selective entry information pack ( and that should answer your question. Remember however, that information does change and you should check their website: for the most up to date information. The entrance examination includes ability and achievement tests and takes approximately three hours to complete. In the examination your child will be competing academically with all other candidates. The entrance examination is designed to test and challenge students. Many students find examination day demanding and this should be taken into consideration by parents. A series of six tests form the selective entry high school examination:  verbal reasoning  numerical reasoning  persuasive written expression  reading comprehension  mathematics  creative written expression. Four of the tests are multiple-choice, run for 30 minutes in length and do not include reading time. The two writing tests are 15 minutes each, and also do not include additional reading time. Normally, a short 15-minute break is taken after the completion of the numerical reasoning test.

Deeksha January 15, 2018

Hi I'm a student who is studying in University High school gread 7and I need help to pripar for my entrance exam in MacRob school And I am unsure about what to learn and how to get pripard. Can you please help me to get admission???

Vi from February 15, 2018

One of the preparation courses that we have for Vic selective school test can be found here: I'd suggest the 6 Courses package as that'll cover all the components of the test: verbal reasoning, numerical reasoning, reading comprehension, maths, creative writing (narrative) and discussion and argumentative writing (persuasive).

Fionaa J April 11, 2018

Hi Vi! I’m in Year 9 right now who’s trying for MacRob year 10. Do you know anyone who has done the year 10 exam and has gotten in? How much more harder do you think in the year 10 exam? Also, how can I improve on my verbal reasoning skills? Thank you

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