Castletroy College Leaving Cert Examination Subjects Information Booklet

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Castletroy College Leaving Cert Examination Subjects Information Booklet
Castletroy College

    Leaving Cert
Examination Subjects

Information Booklet
Table of Contents
Introduction                            2
Mathematics                             3
English                                 4
Gaeilge                                 5
French                                  6
Spanish                                 7
German                                  8-9
Applied Maths                           10-11
Agricultural Science                    12-13
Biology                                 14-15
Chemistry                               16-17
Physics                                 18-19
Accounting                              20
Business Studies                        21
Economics                               22-23
Architectural Technology/Construction   24-25
Design & Communications Graphics        26
Engineering                             27
Technology                              28
Art                                     29-30
Music                                   31-32
Home Economics                          33
Geography                               34-35
History                                 36
Leaving Cert Vocational Programme       37-38
Subject Option Information Booklet


In this booklet the subject co-ordinators of all subjects have outlined the basic
information relating to every subject offered in Castletroy College to Leaving
Certificate Examination Level. This is not intended to be an exhaustive set of
information; students still need to conduct their own research on the all subjects
particularly the Option subjects.

All students must do English, Gaeilge, Maths and a Continental Language then pick
Three Option Subjects that best match their ability and career aspirations. While we
do our best to facilitate all students options, please remember when completing the
option form that;

Students must select five subjects from the range of sixteen currently offered, in order
of preference,

There is no guarantee that all students will get their first three preferences

Please note that subjects offered, are contingent on numbers opting for that subject, as
well as staffing resources

Remember students should make their choices based on research they conduct
themselves contains very helpful information in this regard. They
should also speak to their teachers, Guidance Counsellor, parents and older siblings.

Remember to pick a subject that

    You like

    You are good at

    Doesn‟t restrict your Third Level options

Castletroy College                                                               Page 2
Leaving Certificate Mathematics

Schools are introducing a revised syllabus at Leaving Certificate on a phased basis,
which began in September 2010. This revised syllabus is called Project Maths. There
will be a corresponding change to the mathematics examinations for students in
schools, beginning in 2012 (LC).

By the school year 2012/2013 the complete revised syllabus will be implemented.
That means the following 5 Strands will be taught and examined:

Strand 1:    Statistics and Probability
Strand 2:    Geometry and Trigonometry
Strand 3:    Number
Strand 4:    Algebra
Strand 5:    Functions

What is the most significant change in the syllabuses?

There is an increase in the amount of statistics and probability studied at both Junior
Certificate and Leaving Certificate. There is more of an emphasis on student
understanding of the concepts. Students encounter maths in context, and investigate
and explore mathematical ideas. Active methodologies are used to promote better
student engagement in mathematics classes and to provide them with better insights
into mathematics and its applications.
The following changes apply to the examinations:
P1: 2.5hr exam Strand 3 and Strand 4
P2: 2.5hr exam Strand 1 Strand 2 and Strand 5
Both papers are structured as follows:
Section A Concepts and Skills 150 marks 6 questions
Section B Contexts and Applications 150 marks 2 questions
Students must answer all 8 questions. There will be no choice on the paper

Foundation/ Ordinary / Higher Level Mathematics:

To study a certain level in Leaving Certificate Mathematics students must have at
least passed the corresponding level at Junior Certificate.

Note on Syllabus:

Foundation level is a subset of Ordinary level and
Ordinary level is a subset of Higher level

Castletroy College                                                              Page 3
Leaving Certificate English

The new syllabus, introduced in 1999 and examined for the first time in 2001, invites
students and teachers to embrace language and literature in an open, questioning and
appreciative manner. The broad scope and wide variety of novels, plays, films and
poems invites students and teachers to think, to analyse, to ponder, to question, and to
enjoy the freshness and diversity of the modern syllabus. It emphasises the
development of thinking skills, language skills, writing skills and the development of
a personal response having analysed and interpreted texts.
The English Subject Plan outlines a common curriculum or schedule of work which
each teacher follows each term. This enables Common Christmas and Summer Exams
to be set. However, the texts and poets chosen for study varies from class to class,
teachers use different combinations of texts from the list prescribed for study.
This adheres to the aims of the syllabus and reflects the variety and diversity of choice

Fifth and Sixth Year Leaving Cert- Higher and Ordinary Level
Paper One – The Language Paper
This comprises Reading Comprehension and Composition (essay writing). Students
are encouraged to read newspapers, fiction, non-fiction etc. in order to broaden their
vocabulary and to familiarise themselves with the five types of language prescribed on
the syllabus.
Paper Two – The Literature Paper
Both Higher and Ordinary Level students study a combination of novels/plays/films
and also a range of poetry. However, the study of a Shakespearean text is
compulsory for Higher Level and this text may be chosen by the teacher, from either
the Single Text list or from the Comparative list.
Fifth & Sixth Year Textbooks
    All texts are decided in September of Fifth Year by the individual class
     teacher because teachers choose different texts. Both Higher and Ordinary
     Level students study a combination of novels/plays/films and also a range of
     poetry. Students purchase three texts and a poetry book, term by term, as
     required by the class teacher.
    Exam Papers are required in Sixth Year.

Further information is available from;

Castletroy College                                                                Page 4
Gaeilge don Ardteist

Tá trí leibhéal ar fáil san Ardteist – Ardleibhéal, Gnáthleibhéal agus bonnleibhéal.

                            ARDLEIBHÉAL (600 marc)

Béaltriail: - 150 marc ( 40 % )- scrúdú béil a mhaireann tuairim is cuig noiméad
              déag. Comhrá den chuid is mó atá i gceist anseo agus bíonn ar dhaltaí
              piosa filíochta a léamh agus cur sios a dhéanamh ar shraith pictiúr.

Paipéar 1:     Ceist 1= Triail Chluaistuisceana - 60 marc ( 10% ). Maireann an scrúdú
              seo fiche nóiméad.
              Ceist 2 = Ceapadóireacht – 100 marc ( 16.66% ). Bíonn ar dhaltaí ceist
              amháin a fhreagairt. Caithfidh daltaí aiste nó scéal nó alt nó
              diospóireacht a scríobh.

Paipéar 2:    200 marc ( 33.33% ). Maireann an paipéar seo trí huaire agus cúig
              nóiméad. Tá ceithre cheist le fhreagairt: Ceist 1 = Dhá Léamhthuiscint,
              Ceist 2 = Prós Ainmnithe, Ceist 3 = Filíocht Ainmnithe agus Ceist 4 =
              Litríocht Bhreise

                          GNÁTHLEIBHÉAL (600 marc )

Béaltriail: - 150 marc ( 40 % )- scrúdú béil a mhaireann tuairim is cuig noiméad
              déag. Comhrá den chuid is mó atá i gceist anseo agus bíonn ar dhaltaí
              piosa filíochta a léamh agus cur sios a dhéanamh ar shraith pictiúr.

Paipéar 1:     Ceist 1= Triail Chluaistuisceana - 60 marc ( 10% ). Maireann an scrúdú
              seo fiche nóiméad.
              Ceist 2 = Ceapadóireacht – 100 marc ( 16.66% ). Bionn aiste, scéal, litir
              agus comhrá ar an bpaipéar agus bíonn ar dhaltaí dhá cheist a fhreagairt.

Paipéar 2:    200 marc ( 33.33% ). Maireann an paipéar dhá uair agus fiche nóiméad.
              Tá dhá léamhthuiscint le fhreagairt chomh maith le ceisteanna ar an
              bprós agus ar an bhfilíocht.

An Cúrsa – do pháipéar 2
Gnáthleibhéal                                    Ardleibhéal
5 filíocht ainmnithe                             10 filíocht ainmnithe
6 prós ainmnithe                                 6 prós ainmnithe
                                                 Próstéacs breise

Castletroy College                                                               Page 5
Senior Cycle French

Higher Level                                                    Ordinary Level
Aural – 20%                                                     Aural – 25%
Oral – 25%                                                      Oral – 20%
Written – 55%                                                   Written – 55%

Aural – Listening Test

The same CD is used at Higher and Ordinary Levels. However, the questions at
Higher Level are much more specific and require very detailed answers.


This takes place within the school when the student is in 6th Year. This consists of a
12 minute conversation with an external examiner either immediately before or
immediately after the Easter holidays. Topics for the oral will be covered during 5 th
and 6th Year and include for example – myself, neighbourhood, hobbies, how I spend
the summer holidays, future plans. These topics must be prepared in advance by the
student. There is an option for the student to prepare a document/project/photo in
advance and incorporate a discussion about this into the 12 minute oral.


Higher Level
The written section consists of 2 Reading Comprehensions, i.e. one journalistic and
one literary.
Students must also answer 3 forms of written expression questions which could
include a formal letter, informal letter, fax, e-mail, message diary entry and essays on
a specific topic such as terrorism, the environment, obesity, religion, Europe.

Ordinary Level
Students must complete 4 Reading Comprehensions and 2 forms of written expression
which could include a cloze test, filling out a form, formal letter, informal letter, fax,
e-mail, message, diary entry and postcard.

At Higher Level there is much more emphasis on written expression (manipulation of
tenses and other grammatical structures, a large varied vocabulary on a wide range of
topics.) At Ordinary Level the emphasis is placed on comprehension.
It should be noted that the level of French at higher level senior cycle is appreciably
higher than at Junior Cycle. In order to perform well at higher level senior cycle
French, students should have attained an A or B at Junior Cert higher level.

Castletroy College                                                                Page 6
Senior Cycle Spanish

Higher Level                                                           Ordinary Level
Aural – 20%                                                            Aural – 25%
Oral – 25%                                                             Oral – 20%
Written – 55%                                                          Written – 55%

Aural – Listening Test

The same CD is used at Higher and Ordinary Levels. However, the questions at
Higher Level are much more specific and require very detailed answers.


This takes place within the school when the student is in 6th Year. This consists of a
10 minute conversation with an external examiner either immediately before or
immediately after the Easter holidays. Topics for the oral will be covered during 5th
and 6th Year and include for example – myself, neighbourhood, hobbies, school, how I
spend the summer holidays, future plans. These topics must be prepared in advance
by the student. Students prepare 5 role plays, one of which will be examined in the
oral exam. An additional question pertinent to the role plays is also assessed.


Higher Level
The written section consists of 2 Reading Comprehensions, based on currents affairs
and issues relating to young people.
Students must also answer 3 forms of written expression questions which could
include a formal letter or dialogue, e-mail, message, diary entry and an essay on a
specific topic relating to one of the longer comprehensions.

Ordinary Level
Students must complete 5 Reading Comprehensions and 2 forms of written
expression, an informal letter or e-mail and message or diary entry.

At Higher Level there is much more emphasis on written expression (manipulation of
tenses and other grammatical structures, a large varied vocabulary on a wide range of
topics.) At Ordinary Level the emphasis is placed on comprehension.

It should be noted that the level of Spanish at higher level senior cycle is substantially
higher than at Junior Cycle. In order to perform well at higher level senior cycle
Spanish, students should have attained an A or B at Junior Cert higher level. Students
are expected to keep abreast of Spanish current affairs through new media. The
department encourages Spanish summer courses.

Castletroy College                                                                Page 7
Senior Cycle German

Higher Level                            Ordinary Level
Breakdown of Marks                      Breakdown of Marks
Aural- 20%                              Aural- 25%
Oral- 25%                               Oral- 20%
Written- 55%                            Written- 55%


The same listening comprehension pieces are played for both higher and ordinary
level exams .However the higher level questions require a greater amount of
vocabulary and more detailed answers. Higher level requires a message to be taken
down in German. Ordinary level questions require more recognition of individual
words than sentence structures.


The Oral examination consists of a 15 minute conversation with an examiner. The
conversation has three sections:

1. A general conversation (40marks) based on core topics such as myself, family,
   school, hobbies, future plans, knowledge of Germany and comparisons/contrasts
   with Ireland.

2. A picture sequence or a project (30 marks). The student tells the story contained in
   prepared cartoon sequences and is then questioned on issues arising from the
   story. Students have the choice of preparing a project based on any German

3. 5 Roleplays. The pupil and the examiner role play a prepared scenario.

Both honours and ordinary level students have the same oral examination. Students
must be able to maintain a fluent “natural” conversation, display a competence in the
present, past and future tenses and keep reasonable control of the word order.


Higher Level
The written section consists of 2 reading comprehensions (60marks each) of different
styles, an applied grammar section (25 marks), a written option (25 marks) on an issue
and a letter/ essay (50 marks). Marks are awarded for a wide ranging, detailed
understanding of the texts including mood and style. The written responses are written
in German. Students must display a range of tenses and grammatical functions and
complex structures.

Castletroy College                                                             Page 8
Ordinary Level.

The written section consists of 3 reading comprehensions of different styles.
(60marks, 60 marks and 40 marks). The questions are answered in English. Marks are
awarded for recognition of individual words and details. There are 2 written
expressions, where the students are guided with half sentences and English
instructions (15 marks and 30 marks). Tenses are limited and simple structures are

It should be noted that there is a significant increase in the linguistic demands
placed on students by the Leaving Certificate Higher Level course compared to
the Junior Certificate course. Students wishing to study at Higher Level should
have attained an A or B at Higher level Junior Certificate.

Castletroy College                                                         Page 9
Applied Maths

What is Applied Maths?

    It is a subject for the Leaving Cert only.

    Applied Maths is a subject in which students put their maths into action. It is
     the real solving problem subject.

    Students learn to solve problems (mostly from the world of Physics), using
     maths as the means. If you are reasonably good at Maths and like problem
     solving, and have some feel for the world of Physics, then this is a great subject
     for you.

    It is not necessary to take Physics as a Leaving Cert subject in order to do
     Applied Maths. If you want to do Higher Level Applied Maths, it is necessary
     to do Higher Level Maths as well (in order to have the tools to do the job)

    Applied Maths is a wonderful subject. It is a subject, which makes you think.
     Its effects last a lifetime. The skills you learn- to analyse a problem, to put
     mathematics onto it, to solve the maths, and then to see what it means in real
     life- will make you useful, intelligent, employable, and glad for a lifetime that
     you choose the subject.

    27% of students on average receive A‟s in the Leaving Cert.

    It complements the Maths Course and enables students to obtain the bonus

    Good on your CV.

    The Higher Level Applied Maths course consists of 10 topics in total. The
     examination consists of one paper and is 2.5 hours long. The exam paper
     contains 10 questions at Higher Level and 9 at Ordinary Level, with students
     answering any 6 questions in both cases, spending about 25 minutes on each

    Enables students achieve employment and career prospects at the top end of the
     market in Science, Engineering, Computer Software Development,
     Architecture, Business, Economics, Computer Programming, Actuary, Maths,
     Pharmaceutical Industry and other areas.

Castletroy College                                                            Page 10
 Applied Maths is like Engineering for beginners. Also Architects must know
     some applied maths. Degree courses in the Building industry contain applied
     maths modules. But many Applied Mathematicians get jobs in the Business
     world, because they have analytical and problem solving skills, which can be
     applied to the money markets, the stock-exchange, economics etc.

    This is also a great subject for those who plan to study pure maths in university.
     Indeed many of those who have studied maths at university, say that Applied
     Maths was a more important preparation than Maths itself!

    You can study Applied Maths itself at third level. It is known as
     „Mathsphysics‟ in NUI universities and as „Theoretical Physics‟ in Trinity

Applied Maths is not an easy subject. It is interesting, challenging, educational, level.
and it is good for careers but it is not easy. Applied Maths at the Ordinary Level is
probably the easiest subject on the Leaving Cert.

Castletroy College                                                              Page 11
Agricultural Science

Agricultural Science is the study of the science and technology behind the principles
and practices of agriculture. The published syllabus has remained unchanged for many
years. It is examined at two levels- ordinary and higher level. There is no different in
content between the levels.

Course content:
The course investigates a variety of areas of agriculture including:
Soil science;
The general structure and function of plants;
Farm crops- cereals, root and grassland;
Trees and shelter;
The structure and function of the animal body;
Animal husbandry- cow, sheep, horse and pig;
Farm buildings and farm-house environment;
Fertilisers and the environment;

The examination consists of a terminal written paper worth 75% and a report on
practical coursework worth 25%.
The practical coursework consists of:
Identification of plant and animal types associated with agriculture;
Practical experience with crops, livestock, house and farmyard layout (a visit to a
Investigations carried out relating to ecology, soil science, animal physiology, plant
physiology, genetics and microbiology.
Candidates must sit the written paper in order to receive a grade.

Exam paper layout

Higher level: Answer 6 questions out of 9. Question 1 is not mandatory but is worth
60 marks while all other questions are worth 48 marks. Question 3 has an option of
two parts. There are choices within other questions also.

Ordinary level:      Section 1: Answer 6 questions out of 7, these questions elicit
short and selected responses and are written on the examination paper, each question
is worth 20 marks.

Section 2: Answer 3 questions out of 6, these questions elicit constructed responses;
each question is worth 60 marks.

Castletroy College                                                             Page 12
Leaving certificate agricultural science higher level national results 2011
(total number of candidates: 5,287)

A             B             C            D             E, F & NG
13.1          24.7          28           25.7          8.5

Leaving certificate agricultural science ordinary level national results 2011
(total number of candidates: 1,186)

A            B             C             D             E, F & NG
0.3          7.4           32.4          40.8          19.2

Career opportunities

As well as mainstream farming, there are also career opportunities in:
Animal, plant and food sciences;
Agri-business, e.g. sales and marketing departments;
Environmental management;
Amenity horticulture and forestry areas;
Senior technical positions in quality control and food processing industries;
Technical personnel in organisations offering environmental services to farmers;
Start-up agriculturally based businesses.

Should I take up agricultural science for the leaving certificate?

If you are good at junior certificate science and have a keen interest in biology then
agricultural science is a good option for you. But do not be fooled by the perception
that agricultural science is an easy A! There is a lot of learning involved in
agricultural science. If you are good at writing reports then that is an advantage to you
since there are a lot of reports to be written throughout the two years. Also since the
coursework is worth 25% there is a lot of work done in 5th year relieving pressure in
6th year.

Castletroy College                                                              Page 13
Leaving Certificate Biology

Practical work:

22 mandatory experiments which are examined in the terminal exam only. Therefore,
a maximum of one experiment every three weeks. Students must maintain a written
report of all experiments. These reports must be available for inspection by the State
Examinations Commission at all times. The SEC has the authority to prevent a student
from sitting the written paper if they fail to produce a complete set of laboratory

The subject is divided into three units:

Unit One - The Study of Life The Scientific Method, Characteristics of Life,
Nutrition, General Principles of Ecology, and a Study of an Ecosystem.

Unit Two - The Cell Cell structure, Cell Metabolism, Cell Continuity, Cell Diversity
and Genetics.

Unit Three - The Organism Diversity of Organisms, Organisation and the Vascular
Structures, Transport and Nutrition, Breathing System and Nutrition, Responses to
Stimuli and Reproduction and Growth.

The exam is divided into three sections:

    Section A       -Mainly shorter style questions
                     -6 questions to do 5

    Section B       -Based on the 22 mandatory experiments
                     -3 questions to do 2

    Section C       -Long Questions
                     -A lot of detail required
                     -Will be asked to draw and label anatomical diagrams

Castletroy College                                                           Page 14
Ordinary and Higher Level

Ordinary and higher level candidates are differentiated on the basis of:

Range of topics - an extended range of topics is required at higher level.
Depth of treatment - the ordinary level course provides a general overview of biology
and its application to everyday life. At higher level, a deeper and more quantitative
treatment of biology is required.

Higher level students are expected to have a good scientific literacy and use biological
terminology fluently. Answers are expected to be clear, detailed, logical and concise.

Requirements to study Biology at Leaving Certificate:

    Students should have a genuine interest in Science.

    It is preferable for students to have studied Science at higher level for their
     Junior Certificate.

    Students must have an inquisitive mind and a desire to know why things work
     as they do.

Careers in biology:

    Include medicine, physiotherapy, nursing, dentistry, zoology, horticulture,
     botany, dietician, occupational therapy, genetic engineering, health and fitness,
     agriculture, food science, biotechnology and many more.

Castletroy College                                                             Page 15
Leaving Certificate Chemistry

What is Chemistry?

Chemistry involves a problem solving approach to the world of chemicals, atomic
structure, how and why different chemical reactions occur, the rates at which reactions
occur and the history of chemicals and the periodic table. Chemistry also involves
practical work where students carry out 28 mandatory experiments and record and
analyse the data collected, drawing conclusions around what the student has observed
in the process.

Is Chemistry for you?

    Chemistry will appeal to those who have good analytical and practical skills.

    Chemistry offers opportunities for those who would like to carryout
     investigative laboratory work such as forensics or in a Medical or
     Pharmaceutical Laboratory.

    Chemistry is a gateway to a wide variety of careers such as Medicine,
     Pharmacy, Physiotherapy, Dentistry, Biomedical Engineering, Genetics and
     many more exciting careers.

    If you are interested in using laboratory tests to identify unknown compounds,
     creating chemical reactions, learning how everyday chemicals are made and
     used, then chemistry could be for you.

Third Level Courses for which Chemistry is a Requirement.

Chemistry is a compulsory requirement for- Medicine, Pharmacy, Veterinary,
Dietetics and Dentistry. Chemistry is also strongly recommended for all Science and
Engineering courses

Leaving Certificate Chemistry

Chemistry is offered at both Higher and Ordinary levels. The main topics covered are
Atomic Theory, The Periodic Table, Analytical Techniques, Acids, Bases and pH,
Water, Stiochiometry, Volumertic analysis, Instrumentation, Chemical Equilibrium,
Organic Chemistry and Thermo-chemistry. All Mandatory Experiments must be
recorded and be available for inspection.

Requirements to Study Chemistry

Students should have an aptitude for science and have studied it at Higher Level at
Junior Certificate. Being competent and comfortable with Mathematics is preferable.

Castletroy College                                                            Page 16
Careers in Chemistry

Pharmaceuticals (offers wide employment in Ireland), Forensics, Environmental
Control, Materials Scientist, Chemical and Biochemical Engineering, Cosmetics
Industry, Oil Refining, Plastics, Water Monitoring, Medicine, Pharmacy, Veterinary,
Physiotherapy, Dentistry, Occupational Health, Geology, Research and Development,
Education, Genetic Engineering, Micro-Biology among others.

Leaving Certificate Chemistry - National Results 2011 (Higher and Ordinary Level)

A1    A2    B1    B2    B3   C1   C2   C3   D1   D2   D3   E,F,NG
11.4% 10.5% 10.5% 10.9% 9.1% 7.9% 8.3% 7.4% 4.8% 4.5% 6.1% 8.6%

A1   A2   B1   B2   B3    C1   C2   C3    D1   D2 D3   E,F,NG
3.3% 5.8% 7.5% 8.9% 10.9% 9.3% 8.6% 10.4% 7.8% 7% 7.7% 12.8%

Castletroy College                                                        Page 17
Leaving Certificate Physics

What is physics?

Physics is the basic physical science. Physics is concerned not so much with „what is
so’ but rather „why‟ it is so. It deals with such things as:

Mechanics – force, energy, power, motion, gravity, density, pressure.
Sound – waves, Doppler effect, notes resonance, sound intensity, vibrations.
Heat and temperature – conduction, convection, radiation, heat, thermometric
properties, thermometers, heat capacity.
Light – reflection, refraction, lenses, diffraction, interference, dispersion, colours,
electromagnetic spectrum, spectrometer.
Electricity – charges, electric fields, capacitance, electric current, resistance,
potential, effects, domestic circuits, electromagnetism, alternating current and
Modern physics – the electron, thermionic emission, photoelectric emission, x-rays,
the nucleus, radioactivity, nuclear energy, ionising radiation.

Students also study one of two options, either particle physics or applied electricity.

Is physics for you?

    If you want an enjoyable and rewarding career where you use your
     imagination, your practical ability and your creative flair, then physics could be
     for you.

    If you are thinking about engineering, medicine, dentistry, electronics,
     astronomy or technology, then physics is for you. Physics is compulsory for
     electronic engineering (UCC), theoretical physics (TCD) and is highly
     desirable for most science related and engineering courses.

    With a physics qualification, you could choose to work in the open air, in a
     hospital, in a laboratory team, in some kind of engineering, in education or in
     many other environments.

Requirements to study physics at Leaving Certificate

    It is imperative that students have a genuine interest in and aptitude for science.
    It is preferable for students to have studied and passed science at higher level
     for their Junior Certificate.
    It is preferable for students to be competent and comfortable with mathematics.
    Students must have an inquisitive mind and a desire to know why things work
     as they do.

Castletroy College                                                              Page 18
Exam paper layout

Leaving Certificate physics is offered at two levels, higher and ordinary. The Leaving
Certificate paper for both higher and ordinary is divided into two sections.
    Section A questions students on a sample of the 26 mandatory experiments,
       which students carry out over the course of the two-year Leaving Certificate
       programme (30%).            (Note: these experiments are to be written up by
       students in an experiment copy and available for inspection by the Department
       of Education and Science).
    Section B questions students on the concepts in physics and tests students‟
       ability to apply these concepts in solving mathematical related problems (70%).

Careers in Physics

Include astronomy, geophysics, electronics, biomedical, mechanical engineering,
computer engineering, civil engineering, environmental engineering, military, second
and third level education, radiation protection, environmental monitoring,
construction, telecommunications, photography, video recording, laser technology,
graphics/software design, programming, computers, semiconductors, etc.

Castletroy College                                                           Page 19

Leaving Certificate Syllabus

Leaving Certificate Accounting is divided into 3 sections:

Section 1 and Section 2
These sections cover Financial Accounting. The following are the main topics that are

1.     Final Accounts of (a) Sole Trader (b) Company (c) Manufacturing Firm and
       (d) Departmental Firm
2.     Depreciation and Revaluation
3.     Correction of Errors and Suspense Accounts
4.     Incomplete Records
5.     Club, Farm and Service Firm Accounts
6.     Published Accounts of Companies
7.     Cash Flow Statements
8.     Control Accounts
9.     Interpretation of Accounts
10.    Tabular Statements

There are a few other small areas. A lot of the above topics would have been covered
in the Junior Certificate syllabus but will go into greater detail at Leaving Certificate

Section 3
Management Accounting is studied in this section. The following are the main topics
that are studied:

1.     Product Costing
2.     Cost Volume Profit Analysis
3.     Cash, Production and Flexible Budgets

Leaving Certificate Exam: 3 hour exam (400 marks)
Accounting can be studied at Higher and Ordinary Level.

There is one paper which is divided into:

Section 1:    4 questions: do Q.1 at 120 marks OR 2 others at 60 marks each
Section 2:    3 questions: do 2 questions at 100 marks each
Section 3:    2 questions: do 1 question at 80 marks each

Please note: Students who have not done Business Studies to Junior Certificate level
will not be allowed to select Accounting for Leaving Certificate.

Castletroy College                                                               Page 20
Business - Leaving Certificate Business Syllabus
Leaving Certificate Business is divided into 3 sections. The main topics that are
studied are as follows:
Section A: People in Business – 1 Unit
       A study of people in business, their relationships, interests and conflicts.

Section B: Enterprise – 4 Units
       Enterprise and Management – Skills and characteristics of entrepreneurs.
       Managing 1 – Management skills and activities.
       Managing 2 – Household and Business Management, Human Resource
         Management, the changing role of management.
       Business in Action – Identifying Opportunities, Business setups, Getting
         started, Marketing and Expansion.

Section C: The Business Environment – Domestic and International – 2 Units
    Categories of Industry and Types of Business Organisation
    Community Development – Government Agencies
    Business and the economy – Inflation, Interest rates, employment
    Government and Business – Private/Public Sector, Taxation
    European Union and Business – EU Policies, Institutions
    International Business – Corporation Tax, Transnational Business

The main difference from the Junior Certificate Business Studies Course is the
exclusion of all Book-Keeping and Accounts from the course. However, all students
are expected to have a basic understanding of Final Accounts (Trading, Profit and
Loss Account and Balance Sheet) and Cash Flow projections, so that a student can
carry out analysis of any figures presented in an exam. (This will be covered on the
Business Course).

Leaving Certificate Exam:
Business can be studied at Higher or Ordinary level.
Higher Level: 3 Hour Exam         Ordinary Level: 2.5 Hour Exam

The Higher Level paper is divided into:
Section 1: 10 short Answer Questions: Answer 8
Section 2: 1 Applied Business Question: Compulsory
Section 3: 7 Questions: Answer 4

The Ordinary Level paper is divided into:
Section 1: 15 Short Questions
Section 2: 8 Questions: Answer 4

Students who have not done Business Studies at Junior Certificate level would not be
at a disadvantage if they were to take up Business for Leaving Certificate

Castletroy College                                                             Page 21

Economics is concerned with how domestic and international economies work. It
studies the resources available to society, the scarcity of these resources and choices
made to use such resources.

Economics is an optional subject at Senior Cycle level. There are 5 classes each week
with one double class.

It is not necessary for students to have studied Business at Junior Cycle level.

Leaving Certificate Syllabus

Microeconomics – studies the behaviour of producers and consumers in society.
The following are the main topics studied:
      Market systems
      Consumer and Demand theory
      Producer and Supply theory
      Costs of Production
      Market structures
      Factors of Production

Macro Economics – studies economic issues at a national or international level.
The following are the main topics studied:
      Money and Banking
      National Income
      The Role of Government
      International Trade

Both higher and ordinary exams follow the same format.

Section A: 25% of total marks. 9 short questions - attempt 6. Questions are asked
from both Micro and Macro sections of the course.
Section B: 75% of total marks. 8 long questions – attempt 4. Questions are asked
from both Micro and Macro sections of the course.

Why study Economics?

Firstly, economists are trained to think analytically and critically to solve complex
Secondly, economics is a social science, and economists are trained to recognise
human behaviour in relation to work, production distribution and consumption – the
fundamental operations of most businesses.

Castletroy College                                                            Page 22
Economics is studied at third level as part of all Business courses, as an Arts subject,
on Management courses, Engineering courses, Construction, Journalism and Law and
many other courses.
Other skills which students will learn include logical thinking, oral and written
communication and improved ability to analyse and select information.

Career opportunities
Accountant                                       Financial Analyst
Insurance Underwriter                            Production Manager
Economic Researcher                              Stockbroker
Teacher                                          Commodity Trader

Castletroy College                                                             Page 23
Construction Studies

In Castletroy College, Construction Studies is an optional subject that exists for the
duration of the Senior Cycle. Each week there are two double classes and one single
lesson. While the subject follows on from Materials Technology (Wood), it is not a
prerequisite for students to have studied this at Junior Cycle. It is however preferable,
that students selecting Construction Studies have completed some practical work at
Junior Certificate level. The subjects that facilitate this at Junior Cycle, that are
available at Castletroy College are Materials Technology (Wood), Materials
Technology (Metal), Technology, Technical Graphics; Art is also beneficial.


Construction Studies is assessed by three methods for the final leaving Certificate
grade; a project of the students choosing is completed in sixth year, a skills test is
conducted in May of sixth year and there is the written exam during the Leaving
Certificate. The project may be a building detail (Constructional), a building science
project (Furniture), or a written/drawn project relating to Architectural Heritage
(Heritage). The project must be accompanied with a portfolio. This is a record of the
work of each candidate and it should contain all the details of the project work to
ensure that examiners can readily verify that all the work submitted for assessment is
uniquely that of the candidate. Individuals who have completed practical subjects at
Junior Certificate level will be familiar with this process.

Practical Work

Areas to be covered include sectional drawings associated with topics covered in the
theoretical lessons and carpentry skills. These are developed into the completion of
detailed projects that employ these abilities. The skills prepare students for the
practical exam in sixth year as well providing them with the necessary experience for
their project. The majority of the last term of fifth year and the first term of sixth year
are spent working on the project.

Theoretical Work

Areas to be covered include the history of architecture, procedures and occupations,
planning permission, building design, the materials associated with building,
foundations, walls, windows, doors, roofs and chimneys, water services, stairs,
heating systems, plumbing systems, heat, light, sound, electrical systems and domestic

All areas covered are supported with notes and labelled freehand sketching. The
development of students sketching ability is essential as it forms a fundamental part of
both the theory examination and the report folio.

Castletroy College                                                                Page 24
Distribution of marks

               Theory      Project     Skills Test   Total
Ordinary       200 marks   150 marks   150 marks     500 marks
Higher Level 300 marks     150 marks   150 marks     600 marks

Castletroy College                                               Page 25
Design And Communication Graphics (DCG)

Design and Communication Graphics was introduced in September 2007, replacing
Technical Drawing on the national curriculum. The Design and Communication
Graphics syllabus makes a unique contribution to a student‟s cognitive and practical
skills development. These skills include graphic communication, creative problem
solving, spatial abilities/visualisation, design capabilities, computer graphics and CAD

Design and Communication Graphics is a follow on from Technical Graphics at
Junior Cycle. The geometry studied in Technical Graphics is continued and leads to a
3 hour exam for the Leaving Certificate which accounts for 60% of the overall marks
awarded for the subject. The other 40% of marks is allocated to a Student Assignment
which students complete between September and January of sixth year.

The Student Assignment consists of a design brief which is issued to students by the
State Examinations Commission in September of sixth year. Students create a
portfolio which includes an investigation into the design topic and 3D parametric
computer models of an existing artefact and their new design using a programme
called SolidWorks.

The drawing room in Castletroy College is equipped with 24 computers which run the
3D modelling programme SolidWorks. A copy of this programme is available to DCG
students for home use. All students who study Technical Graphics at Junior Cycle are
eligible to study Design and Communication Graphics at Senior Cycle. Any student
who did not study Technical Graphics at Junior Cycle and is interested in studying
Design and Communication Graphics should talk directly to Ms Fleming about the
extra work that is involved in catching up on what was covered in the Junior Cycle.

Design and Communication Graphics is an excellent choice of subject for students
interested in studying a wide variety of courses in areas such as Engineering,
Construction, Design and Computing. Examples of such courses are Engineering
(Aeronautical, Bio-chemical etc.) Architecture, Product Design Technology, Graphic
Design, Design and Manufacture, Computer Aided Design, Game Design and
Multimedia, Education etc.

Castletroy College                                                             Page 26

Engineering is one of the four Technology Subjects offered at Senior Cycle in
Castletroy College. Whilst it is of benefit to have studied Metalwork, or any other
Technology Subject at Junior Cycle, it is not necessary to have done so. No
prerequisite knowledge is required.

Leaving Certificate Engineering affords students the opportunity to develop skills in
creativity, problem solving, innovation, research, enterprise, design, manufacture and
reflection. ICT is an integral part of the everyday classroom experience. All of these
skills are of tremendous benefit to any student intent on future study following Second
Level Education.

Engineering classes take place in the Technology ICT room, equipped with 25 PC‟s
with SolidWorks 2012, and the engineering workshops(2) to facilitate the
development of the aforementioned skills. A work at home copy of SolidWorks is
made available to all students of Engineering.

The subject has both practical and theoretical components, with an equal allocation of
time to each.

    Theory accounts for 50% of the overall grade which is assessed through a three
     hour exam timetabled during the Leaving Certificate examinations.

    The Engineering project, 25%, consists of a design brief which is issued to
     students by the State Examinations Commission in October of Leaving
     Certificate Year. Students must produce a model as a solution to a given brief
     accompanied by a folio which will clearly exhibit the students thought process
     as they work through the development of their solution.

    A practical day exam, 25%, is timetabled for May of Leaving Certificate Year.
     Students produce an assembled mechanism based on a working drawing issued
     from the State Examinations Commission. These skills are developed
     throughout the two year programme.

This assessment approach appeals to students as they complete a significant portion of
their work through continuous assessment which eases some of the pressures
associated with a 100% terminal examination.

Leaving Certificate Engineering develops a broad range of skills which prove
beneficial in the study of a wide variety of disciplines including; Engineering
(Aeronautical, Mechanical, Production, Bio-Medical etc.), Product Design,
Architecture, Production Management, Automation, to name but a few.

If you require further information speak with Mr. Flannery or Mr. Coughlan

Castletroy College                                                            Page 27
Leaving Certificate Technology


Technology education is an essential component of the curriculum. In a world where
encounters with a wide range of technologies are part of the daily life experience of all
people at work or at leisure, students should be equipped to face these encounters with
the confidence which comes from learning about, through and with a range of
technologies. It is equally important that they gain an appreciation and understanding
of the complex interface between technology and society. As citizens they should
have the capacity to enter discussion about, make personal judgements on, issues
related to the impact of technology on their own lives, on society, and on the

Course Design
The course comprises of two sections
Core Elements
Optional Modules

The Core
The core is intended as a broad general introduction to the nature of technology. It is
also intended to provide students with a consolidation, extension and refinement of the
knowledge, skills and techniques acquired in the junior cycle.

The options provide an opportunity for students to undertake a more in-depth study of
particular aspects of technology. Students must choose two of the following five
       • Electronics and Control
       • Applied Control Systems
       • Information and Communications Technology
       • Manufacturing Systems
       • Materials Technology.

Component                Sub-component                   Course %

Examination Paper        Section A: Core
                         Section B: Options              50%
Project                  Artefact
                         Report/Portfolio                50%

Castletroy College                                                              Page 28

Leaving Certificate – an overview

Students are required to sit FOUR papers for the Leaving Certificate. THREE papers
are practical and ONE is written.

The percentage breakdown is:       Art History          –      37 ½ %
                                   Practical Papers     –      62 ½ %

The practical papers are:
   1. Imaginative Composition or Still Life      2 ½ hr exam           100 marks
   2. Craftwork                                  5 hr exam             100 marks
   3. Life Sketching                             1 hr exam             50 marks
   4. History & appreciation of Art              2 ½ hr exam           150 marks

Imaginative Composition or Still Life:

This paper will consist of a descriptive passage which will be open to interpretation as
either an imaginative composition or still life study. The paper is made available to the
student a week before the exam so that a group of objects mentioned within or
inferred by the passage can be gathered and brought into the exam. The student then
draws the objects that are laid out in front of him/her.

Craft work:

This paper is also given to the student a week prior to the exam. This enables the
student to complete an A2 page of drawings to explore the themes mentioned in the
question. This page can be brought into the exam and this provides the starting point
for the finished piece.

Life Sketching:

Candidates are required to make two sketches of a model. The first will be a pose of
15mins. The second will be a more fully worked drawing taking approximately

History and Appreciation of Art, Craft & Design

The examination paper offers a wide choice of topics on each section (as listed
below). Candidates are required to answer one question from each of the three
sections of the paper. (3 essay type questions in total).
       Section 1 - Art in Ireland (from Prehistoric times to present)
       Section 2 - European Art (from 1000 A.D. to present)

Castletroy College                                                              Page 29
Section 3 -General Appreciation (this section is intended to afford the
       candidate with an opportunity to discuss topics based on every day visual
       experiences in their own environment.)



In Castletroy College, it is a requirement to have completed Art, Craft & Design to
Junior Certificate level in order to qualify to opt for it at Leaving Certificate. However
in exceptional circumstances if a student can show a good ability in drawing then
consideration will be given to this applicant. (A portfolio of drawings and/or other art
work would be required in this event.)

Art Careers:

Luckily, not all artists starve these days. A career in art can be quite lucrative
especially if you couple your artistic talents with computer skills.
Competition in the field of art is generally high. The best talents usual gain the highest
paying positions. However, employment opportunities are expected to grow for
careers in art, especially in the area of multimedia (including growth for video
producers, animators, and game designers).
It is also worth noting that a high percentage of all artists are self employed. This is
great news for those with an independent and entrepreneurial spirit.
Art careers are available in a variety of fields including:
      Publishing , including illustration & animation
      Advertising
      Marketing
      Multimedia
      Film & media arts
      Computer & technology art
      Video game creation
      Architecture
      Engineering
      Education( primary & second & third level, museums & galleries)
      Craft( textile, ceramic, glass, painting, sculpture etc)
      Design, including interior design, product design, graphic design, fashion
         design, computer & website design, garden design

Art is a broad field which stretches across many types of careers and industries. There
are literally hundreds of careers in the art field, each with different responsibilities,
salaries, and required skills and education.

Castletroy College                                                               Page 30
Leaving Certificate Music          (2014-2017)

The exam is divided into 4 sections - Total = 400 marks

      Listening            100 marks
      Composing            100 marks
      Practical            100 marks
      Elective             100 marks (either Practical/Composing /Listening)

[Most students choose Practical which means 50% of their exam is practical

Note: Practical exam takes place around Easter of 6th year

Listening -100 marks/25%

    Students study 4 set works (55 marks)
           1. The Beatles - Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band, She‟s Leaving
               Home, When I‟m Sixty-four
           2. Mozart Concerto for Piano and Orchestra
           3. Berlioz Symphony Fantastique
           4. Deane – Seachanges

    Irish Music (25 marks)

    Aural Skills (20 marks)

Composing-100 marks/25%

    Composition (40 marks)
    Harmony / Backing chords (60 marks)

Practical -200 marks/50%

    Students playing 1 instrument play 6 pieces
    Students playing 2 instruments e.g. Piano and singing play 4 pieces on each

There is no set grade for Leaving Certificate music. 6 years of class based teaching
is sufficient e.g. 6 years of learning recorder during class time. This would be similar
to Grade 4/5/6/7/8.

Castletroy College                                                             Page 31
If you are unsure whether to study music as a subject without having it for Junior
Certificate you would want a good standard of music on your instrument and you
would also want to have some level of theory completed.

Students can continue on to study Music, Music Technology, Music and Arts, Arts,
Music and Media, Music Performance, Primary School Teaching, Music
Therapy etc.

Castletroy College                                                        Page 32
Home Economics

    It is available at Higher and Ordinary level.
    The content in neutral with regards to participation of boys and girls.

Syllabus Structure

The Leaving Certificate Home Economics Scientific and Social syllabus is made up of
a Core element along with a choice of electives to complete.

The core is compulsory and consists of three areas:
  1. Food Studies 45%
  2. Resource Management and Consumer Studies 25%
  3. Social Studies 10%

Elective - There are three electives:

Elective 1 Home Design and Management
Elective 2 Textiles, Fashion and Design
Elective 3 Social Studies

    The elective makes up 20% of the syllabus content.
    The elective to be completed is at the teacher‟s discretion.
    The course is designed to be taught in 180 hours over two years, this allows
       time to teach one elective only.

The exam is made up of short questions Section A, Section B (long questions) and
Section C (elective)
    Exam time-Two and a half hours written paper - 80%
    Practical cookery journal report (carried out in fifth year) - 20% . This work is
       completed in 5th Year under the supervision of the class teacher. Attendance at
       practical classes is paramount so teacher can sign off on work completed in
       accordance with State Exam Commission guidelines.

Careers in Home Economics:

Family life, Manager, Food Industry, Environmental studies, Leisure management,
Fashion and Design, Nursing, Dietician, Teacher, Sociologist, Nutritionist, Hotel
Manager, Child Care, Chef, Food Scientist, House Design, Interiors and Services,

Note: Preference will be given to students who have studied this subject at Junior
Cert Level

Castletroy College                                                             Page 33

Subject Overview:
Geography is concerned with the study of people and their environment. The subject
will help students develop an understanding of the changing relationships between the
physical and human worlds. Through their study of Geography, students will develop
geographical skills that will help them to make informed judgements about issues at
local, national and international levels.


Leaving Certificate Geography may be studied at Ordinary and Higher Level. The
course is divided into core, elective and optional units of study. Students are expected
to develop important geographical skills as they study these units.

Core Units:

   1. Patterns and processes in the physical environment.
   2. Regional geography.
   3. The Geographical Investigation and Skills unit (Fieldwork). 20% of the Exam,
      it is completed before the final written exam.

Elective Units:

   1. Patterns and processes in economic activities.
   2. Patterns and processes in the human environment.

Optional Units:

   1.   Global Interdependence
   2.   Geoecology
   3.   Culture and Identity
   4.   The Atmosphere-ocean environment.

Ordinary level students study all core units and one of the elective units. Higher level
students study all core units, one of the elective units and one of the optional units.

Leaving Certificate Geography is assessed at Ordinary and Higher level

Assessment Components:
    Examination paper = 80%
    Report on Geographical Investigation = 20%

Castletroy College                                                             Page 34
Why is Geography a good subject choice for the Leaving Certificate?

You are at the stage of choosing your subjects to study at Leaving Certificate level.
Geography is one of those subjects that most students find manageable and can
achieve excellent grades once they are prepared to put in a consistent effort over both
years of the Leaving Certificate Syllabus. Most students enjoy the scope of the
material they cover in Geography, the insights it can provide into understanding the
world around us and the sheer contemporary nature of the issues it tackles e.g.
    The ongoing global economic crisis.
    The causes and results of the earthquake in Japan 2011.
    The migration of people from one place to another e.g. Irish people to Britain,
       USA and Australia.

Geography also prepares students for the working world where most employers

    People who can work as part of a team - The Geographical Investigation
     (Fieldwork study) is an essential component of the Geography syllabus and is
     an ideal setting in which to develop teamwork and leadership skills.
    People who analyse their work - The Geographical Investigation (Fieldwork
     study) tests hypothesis and involves a great deal of analysis.
    People who can ask questions and then find the answers – Geographers can
     pose problems and then investigate the answers. They can undertake decision
     making exercises using information at a variety of levels.

Therefore the skills you develop and use in Geography make you particularly
interesting to a wide range of employers. The clear link between the subject and the
world around us makes for a long and varied list of related careers.

Careers in Geography

      Town planner
      Cartographer
      Transport management
      Meteorologist
      Tourism
      Teacher
      Demographer
      Environmental Officer
      Geographic Information System Specialist

Castletroy College                                                            Page 35
Leaving Certificate History

                                 Higher & Ordinary
                                Research Study = 20%
                              Documents Question = 20%
                               Topic 2 Question = 20%
                               Topic 3 Question = 20%
                               Topic 4 Question = 20%

Both Higher and Ordinary level History for the Leaving Cert consists of four topics
and a research study which pre-submitted in April of sixth year. In addition one of the
topic is examined as a documents based question.

The research study is an in depth piece of work to be completed by the student on any
historically significant episode which interests them. The study allows for outside
gathering of information and students will be expected to examine at least three
sources. An essay of 1,500 words (Higher Level) or 800 words (Ordinary Level) is
then prepared and pre-submitted by the student.

The documents based topic is chosen by the Exams Commission but students will
know which topic it is in fifth year. This topic is assessed by presenting the student
with a document, map or cartoon and asking them to answer short and long questions
on the document and related history.

The remaining three topics are examined in either essay form (Higher Level) or by
short questions and paragraphs (Ordinary Level). There is ample choice in the exam
with regard to each topic.

The topics that will be covered are based around Later Modern Irish and European
history (c.1870-1995) with some elements of American, Russian and Chinese history.
In essence the Leaving Cert course is very like a more in-depth version of the third
year Junior Cert course.

As there is an appreciable difference in the standard of work accepted between junior
and senior cycle it would be envisaged that candidates for Higher Level Leaving Cert
History would have achieved an A or B grade in Higher Level for their Junior

History as a subject is very useful as a basis for either degrees or careers in areas such
as, Archaeology-Teaching-Law-Business-Journalism-Town Planning-Architecture-
European Studies-Politics etc.

Castletroy College                                                               Page 36
Leaving Certificate Vocational Programme

What is L.C.V.P?

It is an enhanced Leaving Certificate programme whereby senior students complete 7
Leaving Certificate subjects plus 2 Link Modules –

    1. World of Work – Preparation for the world of work, completion of Curriculum
       Vitae, Letters of application, Career investigations, work shadowing, a week of
       work experience, etc.
    2. Enterprise education – what is an entrepreneur, what is involved in setting up
       and running a business and the promotion of personal and business enterprise.

   Students qualify for the programme depending on subjects choices for the Leaving
    Certificate (please turn page over to see subject groupings).

   Students must complete a portfolio of work which accounts for 60% of the marks
    and an exam in May of the Leaving Certificate year which accounts for the other
    40% of the marks.

   Students obtain points for University and the Institutes of Technology for
    completing the Link Modules. (The Link Modules result can be used as a sixth
    subject for points purposes.)
    Marking Scheme
    Distinction (80-100%) is worth 70 points
    Merit (65-79%) is worth 50 points
    Pass (50 – 64%) is worth 30 points

   L.C.V.P. Programme would normally include 1-2 external industry visits, external
    guest speakers, career investigations, interview and job-seeking skills. Students
    participate in a work experience placement for one week during 5th year.

   Further information on the L.C.V.P. Programme is available on the website

Castletroy College                                                            Page 37
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