AQE - Common Entrance Assessment (CEA) | The Transfer Test
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Information & Help with the Northern Ireland Transfer Test

AQE - Common Entrance Assessment (CEA)

Contact AQE

Phone: (028) 90224002

AQE Key dates (2020/21)

Thu 14th May 2020: Registration Opens
Fri 9th Oct 2020: Registration Closes
Sat 27th Feb 2021: The Test
Sat 6th March 2021: Results

More Key Dates

AQE Practice Papers & Revision Booklets are available to buy from our shop.


Association for Quality Education (AQE Ltd) is the company formed to manage and administer the Common Entrance Assessment (CEA) for transfer of pupils from primary to a number of post primary schools in Northern Ireland.
Click to read more about the AQE

Common Entrance Assessment (CEA)

  • Format of the CEA (pdf)
  • Specification of the CEA (pdf)
  • Tests are held in participating grammar schools
  • Where a child sits the assessment has no bearing whatsoever on admission to a post-Primary school in the future.
  • After the registration process has been completed, all candidates will be contacted by their Assessment Centre, and invited to attend a familiarisation day in this school.
  • All 3 assessments begin at 10 a.m. and last for 1 hour (with the exception of extra time candidates). AQE recommends that candidates attend ALL 3 assessments, however as the final age-standardised score is achieved through ‘best 2 out of 3’, it is only compulsory to attend 2 assessments. This allows for an ‘off day’ or illness etc.
  • There is no subsidiary paper available. If a candidate is only available to attend 1 assessment, you should contact the AQE Office via telephone - (028) 9022 4002.
  • More information is available on the AQE's Website .

2021/22 Registration

The 2021-22 Registration form will be available on the AQE website when registration opens. AQE Registration usually opens mid-May and closes in September, however these dates may change again this year due to Covid-19.

AQE Schools not using academic selection for 2021/22

The following schools have announced that they will not be using AQE results to select pupils for 2022.

  • Lagan College, Belfast

Each school will have their own admissions criteria for 2022.

AQE (CEA) Past Papers

2014-2019 Past Papers are only available to purchase from the AQE website shop.
2009-2013 Past Papers are available free to download from the AQE website. Practice Papers & Free Samples

To purchase our AQE (CEA) style practice papers or download our free product samples please visit our shop page.

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