UKiset is an online assessment that is part of the selection process for international students who wish to gain entry to leading UK independent schools. It can be taken in the student's own country at an authorized testing centre, in the UK at a test centre in London or at selected schools.

Used by over 180 British schools and evaluates student's ability to understand the British curriculum as well as evaluating student's skill in terms of language, mathematics and problem solving. It also measures potential and their aptitude for learning.

UKiset consists of three sections:

Section One: Reasoning

In this section, it evaluates the candidate's learning potential in quantitative, non-verbal and verbal reasoning. Candidate's score is standardized according to their age and compared to British students in the same year group. For candidates with English as their second language, the verbal reasoning section will be more challenging than for a British student.

Therefore, UKiset provides two averages: one overall average and one excluding the verbal score, so schools can identify a candidate's potential when language is not a factor. This part of the Assessment also provides predictive analysis on what the candidate might go on to achieve at GCSE and beyond.


Section Two: The Cambridge English Placement Test (CEPT)

A multiple-choice kind of section that measures a candidate's English level in reading and listening. It helps schools to evaluate how candidates will be able to access the UK curriculum.


Section Three: English Essay

An expressive writing test with a given topic to the candidate on the day of test. The topic will be age appropriate. A handwritten essay and will be sent to the school to be assessed and marked by them. It will demonstrate the candidate's ability to express their opinion and communicate in written English.



UKiset Reasoning section takes approximately 2.5 hours to complete. For year 12 entries (16+), this may be longer due to the level of their test. This test has four parts; Verbal Reasoning (VR), Non-verbal Reasoning (NVR), Quantitative Reasoning (QR) and Spatial Awareness (SA). Each section contains two different types of question. 

All questions have five answers to choose from, which are labelled A to E.

Part 1 (Non-Verbal Reasoning)

Figure Classification | 10 minutes | 24 questions

Candidates will be given three different shapes which all have something in common. The candidate must work out what their similarity is and select the answer which shares this similarity.



In this example, the three shapes on the left all have four sides and are shaded in. The answer is therefore D.


Figure Matrices | 10 minutes | 24 questions


Candidates will be given a set of shapes. They must identify the pattern within the set of shapes and choose which of the answers completes the set.


In this example, the square on the right is smaller than the square on the left. The answer is therefore D, as it is a smaller circle than the one on the left.


Part 2 (Verbal Reasoning)

Verbal Classification | 8 minutes | 24 questions


Candidates will be given three words which share a similarity. They must identify how the words are similar and select the answer which shares this similarity.


In this example, the three words given are all colours. The answer is therefore D as it is also a colour.


Verbal Analogies  | 8 minutes | 24 Questions


Candidates will be given three words. The first two words will be related to each other. The candidate must select which of the answers shares the same relationship with the third word.


In this example, the first two words are opposites. The answer is therefore E, as dry is the opposite of wet.


Part 3 (Quantitative Reasoning)

Number Analogies | 10 minutes | 18 Questions

Candidates will be given two pairs of numbers and one single number. The second number in the pairs is gained by performing an operation to the first number. This operation will be addition, subtracting, multiplication or division. The candidate must identify what this operation is and choose the answer which is found when the operation is performed on the one single number.


In this example, you need to first identify what operation gets from both 2 to 3 and 9 to 10. You need to add 1. The answer is therefore E.


Number Series | 8 minutes | 18 Questions


Candidates will be given a series of numbers. They must identify what rules have been used to arrange the order of the numbers, then select the answer which comes next in the series.



In this example, each number in the series is one lower than the previous number. The answer is therefore C.

Part 4 (Spatial Awareness)


Figure Recognition | 9 minutes | 18 Questions


Candidates will be given a target shape which is hidden in one of five designs. They will have to select which shape contains the hidden target shape.


In this example, the target shape is hidden within shape B. You can see that they are the same if you remove the lines shown as dashes in the image below.



Figure Analysis | 9 minutes | 18 Questions


Candidates will be shown a diagram of a piece of paper, which has been folded and hole punched. They will have to select the answer which shows how the piece of paper will look once it has been unfolded again.


In this example, the paper has been folded in half once horizontally. It has then had a hole punched in its left side. Once it has been unfolded, the line of the fold will act as the line of symmetry. The answer is therefore B.



The CEPT test is an online test consist of Reading and Listening that can be in a variety of different types.


Reading Tasks

Read and select - Candidates will be tasked to read a notice, diagram, label, memo or letter containing a short text. Choose the sentence or phrase that most closely matches the meaning of the text.

Gapped sentences - Candidates will be tasked to read a sentence with a missing word (gap). Choose the correct word to fill the gap. 

Multiple-choice gap-fill - Candidates will be tasked to choose the right word or phrase to fill the gaps in a text.

Open gap-fill - Candidates will be tasked to read a short text in which there are some missing words (gaps) and write in the missing word in each gap.

Extended reading - Candidates will be tasked to read a longer text and answer a series of multiple-choice questions. Questions are in the same order as the information in the text.

Listening Tasks


Listen and select - Candidates will be tasked to listen to a short audio recording and answer a multiple-choice question.

Extended listening - Candidates will be tasked to listen to a longer recording and answer a series of multiple-choice questions based on it. The questions are in the same order as the information they hear in the recording.




The UKiset essay requires a candidate to produce a handwritten essay on a subject given on the day and will be sent to the school to be marked by a teacher. Candidates will be given 30 minutes for the creative writing and will be provided with a timer, so they know how much time they have.

Known as a piece of ‘expressive writing on an expository topic', expressive writing' in this context means personal writing which expresses and explores the feelings of the writer while ‘expository’ means writing about something in a structured and reasoned manner.

It requires a candidate to demonstrate their command of written English (phraseology, spelling, grammar, idiom, vocabulary and register) and ability to structure a piece of writing.

Therefore, candidates need to address the topic in a logical way which includes providing opinion supported by relevant argument. The topic given will be age appropriate and will evaluates the candidate's opinion, viewpoint or feelings about something.


Criteria for marking:


Structure- marks will be awarded for a start, middle and end; logical argument; and clear paragraphing.

Content - appropriate vocabulary, register, idiomatic expression and the correct tone.

Accuracy - in terms of spelling, grammar and punctuation. Up to a third of marks could be deducted for material errors.