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Key Stage 2 Mathematics National Curriculum Tests From 2016

In general, the Key Stage 2 mathematics tests will remain largely the same as in previous years. The questions will be slightly altered according to the new curriculum.

What are the main changes?
The main difference to the format of the papers is the change from a mental arithmetic paper to an arithmetic paper. This change means that the Key Stage 2 Arithmetic test will no longer have an audio recording of the questions, but the questions will be written on  the paper instead. The sample materials for the 2016 papers show the response boxes with squared paper to allow for working out.

How many papers will there be?
There will be 3 papers. The format is as follows:

  Information Time Allowed Marks Available
Paper 1 Arithmetic paper 30 minutes 40 marks
Papers 2 and 3 Both papers are general mathematics papers. They are both non-calculator 40 minutes for each paper 35 marks for each paper
      Total = 110 marks

Will the tests only cover Year 6 work?
The questions in the Key Stage 2 SATs Maths tests will be taken from the new national curriculum and will include a variety of work from Year 3, Year 4, Year 5 and Year 6.

What types of question will come up?
There will be a mixture of question types from across the curriculum:
  • The arithmetic test will contain questions from the Number and Place Value, Calculations, Fractions, Ratio and Proportion and Algebra sections of the curriculum.
  • Papers 2 and 3 will contain questions from the Number and Place Value, Calculations, Fractions, Ratio and Proportion, Algebra, Measurement, Geometry and Statistics sections of the curriculum.

Will there be problem solving questions?
The arithmetic test is made up of sums and calculations. Papers 2 and 3 will put more of an emphasis on problem solving and reasoning skills.
When putting the tests together, they will be very careful to ensure that there is a mixture of question levels. This includes, not just different levels of ability, but also different levels of complexity. So, some questions will involve more steps than others, or might involve more than 1 maths topic. This way, they make sure it's not just "straight-forward" maths, but also includes problem solving and reasoning ability.

What is the pass mark?
There is no "pass" or "fail" with SATs exams. The aim is to determine whether the student has grasped what they have been learning from Year 3 to 6.
Up to 2015, the scores are shown in curriculum levels, so you can determine from the level your child achieves whether they are average, above average or below average.
From 2016, levels will be replaced by scaled scores. A scaled score of 100 will indicate that the child has reached the expected standard. For more information about the scaled scoring system, visit our Key Stage 2 SATs Marks page.


Key Stage 2 Arithmetic Practice Test Pack
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