Non-verbal reasoning tests are designed to assess how well a child can analyse visual information and solve problems by using visual logic.

Non-verbal reasoning is generally not taught in school. The questions involve code and shape sequences, where children will be asked to deduce how they relate to each other.



Rotations and symmetry.



Working out which diagram comes next in a sequence.



Working out cube nets and how shapes will look when folded.

Non-verbal reasoning 11 Plus
11 plus exams

How is non-verbal reasoning tested?

To succeed in this element of the exam children must be logical and understand maths concepts such as symmetry and rotation. Each question will provide the children with a sequence of shapes that they must analyse. Questions could include ‘find the next one in the sequence’ or ‘find the odd one out’.

Non-verbal reasoning challenges children to interpret visual problems, without the need to draw on prerequisite information. For this reason, it is seen as a ‘pure intelligence’ measure. To tackle this exam with confidence children must be familiar with the different questions types and practice to improve their speed and accuracy.

Unlike the verbal reasoning element of the 11 Plus exams which are English language-based, non-verbal reasoning questions use diagrams, shapes or codes to test your child’s ability to work out sequences, similarities and differences between these figures or crack the code.

11 Plus support

Support before, during and after the exams

Our 11+ exam tuition course ensures your child will develop a strong foundation of skills in maths, supporting children to become familiar with concepts such as symmetry, rotation and shape. To support your child’s confidence, speed and accuracy we also offer an online non-verbal reasoning tool for unlimited home practice. You can also tackle jigsaw puzzles together at home – they will help to improve your child’s shape and spatial awareness.

The 11 Plus tuition course is run alongside a weekly maths and English tutoring session to develop your child’s overall academic skills to help them tackle all elements of the exams.

Beyond the exam, we are also dedicated to ensuring that children have the necessary skills and confidence to succeed in their new school. For many children, the step up to year 7 can be a daunting one. That’s why from day one our course not only develops a strong academic foundation for your child but also their confidence and social skills – ensuring they are academically prepared and ready and excited for the challenges ahead.

Our 11 Plus tutors are on hand to answer any questions you might have about how we can help your child prepare for the exams.


Non-verbal reasoning questions

Depending on your child’s individual needs we will tailor your child’s sessions to build up their maths skills. Our range of practise resources help your child feel familiar with the different types of non-verbal reasoning questions they may face. Here are just two examples that may appear in the exam.

Non-verbal reasoning question
Non-verbal reasoning question

11 Plus quiz

Want to practise some 11 Plus questions to test your speed and accuracy? Try our 11 Plus quiz to get a better understanding of the kind of maths skills need for the 11 Plus exams.



Practice Questions

Ready to get started?

From finding schools in your area to practising exam questions and discussing 11+ tuition, we can help with your next steps.

Over the last 15 years, Explore Learning has developed an 11 Plus and Entrance Exam offering that is tailored to suit the schools in the local area. Whether your child is sitting a CEM, GL Assessment, Bond, Avery or local school entrance paper we adapt our tools and advice to prepare for the exam.