The Leaving Certificate (Established) is a two-year programme that aims to provide learners with a broad, balanced education while also offering some specialisation towards a particular career option. Students following the Leaving Certificate (Established) programme are required to study at least five subjects, one of which must be Irish. In general, students take seven subjects for examination. Syllabuses are available in 34 subjects.
Subjects Offered at Leaving Certificate level include:
Leaving Certificate art is made up of four units linked together and based on the everyday visual experience of the student’s own environment.
The practical work can include Life Sketching, Still Life, Imaginative Composition, Design and Craftwork. Students also study the History and Appreciation of Art, which covers Irish and European Art, and Art Appreciation.
Biology is the study of life. Through the study of biology students explore the diversity of life and the inter-relationships between organisms and their environment. They become aware of the use of living organisms and their products to enhance human health and the environment.
Leaving Certificate business creates an awareness of the importance of business activity and develops a positive and ethical attitude towards enterprise. The learning experiences in business develop students’ critical thinking, creative and organisational skills while enhancing literacy and numeracy skills using real-life examples. Business provides students with a learning foundation for a wide range of careers in business, marketing, law, enterprise and management.
Leaving Certificate construction studies provides students in the senior cycle of post-primary education with an introduction to the knowledge and skills involved in construction technology and construction materials and processes. Students develop their ability to communicate ideas and information and to apply accurate observation and scientific investigation through exploring materials and processes.
Leaving Certificate design and communication graphics involves comprehending, analysing and communicating information presented verbally or graphically. Problem solving and creative thinking skills are developed through the analysis and solution of problems in both two and three dimensions graphics. Graphics and design are communicated using a variety of media, including computer-aided design (CAD). The main areas of study are: Plane and Descriptive Geometry, Communication of Design and Computer Graphics, and Applied Graphics.
Leaving Certificate English invites students into rich experiences with language so that they become fluent and thoughtful users of it and more aware of its significance in their lives. It develops a range of literacy and oral skills in a variety of areas, personal, social, and cultural. Students develop a wide range of skills and concepts. These will allow them to interpret and enjoy a range of material so that they become independent learners who can operate independently in the world beyond the school.
Leaving Certificate French follows a common syllabus framework for the teaching and examining of modern languages in the Leaving Certificate. The syllabus aims to develop learners’ communicative skills in the French, to develop their strategies for effective language learning and raise their awareness of cultural, social and political diversity.
Leaving Certificate Irish builds upon the language developed during Junior Cycle. All four language skills are further developed in order to enable the learner take an active part in the bilingual society in which we live in today in Ireland. The learner is encouraged to develop and share her/his views on a range of topics. The learner is also prepared during Senior Cycle for further study in or through Irish.
Irish is assessed at three levels i.e. Foundation Level, Ordinary Level or Higher Level. The learner’s oral competency is assessed around Easter of the final year, in an oral examination worth 40%, at each level, of the overall mark, and the other three skills are assessed in June. Aspects of literary works must be studied at Ordinary Level while at Higher Level these same works and additional material must be studied in greater detail.
Leaving Certificate geography 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 or Higher level. The course is divided into core, elective and optional units of study.
Leaving Certificate history deals with the experience of human life in the past. The study of history involves an investigation of the surviving evidence relating to such experience. It brings students into contact with human experiences that are often very different from their own and fosters their developing understanding of the human condition and human motivation. Through its focus on the evaluation of evidence, it contributes significantly to the development of students’ skills of critical thinking. Through its focus on research, it allows students the opportunity to develop their skills of independent learning.
Leaving Certificate home economics provides students with knowledge, understanding, skills and attitudes necessary for managing their own lives, for further and higher education and work. The learning experiences in home economics develop flexibility and adaptability in students, prepare them for a consumer-oriented society and provide a learning foundation for a wide range of careers in food, textiles, science, design, social studies and tourism.
Mathematics at Senior Cycle builds on the learning at Junior Cycle and develops mathematical knowledge, skills and understanding needed for continuing education, life and work. Through their study of mathematics, students develop a flexible, disciplined way of thinking which enables them to solve problems in mathematical and real world contexts.
Leaving Certificate Physics aims to give students an understanding of the fundamental principles of physics and their application to everyday life. It offers a general education in physics to all students, enabling them to develop an understanding of the scientific method and their ability to observe, to think logically and to communicate effectively. Science technology and society (STS) is an integral part of the syllabus so that students can be aware of the principles of the applications of physics in the everyday world.
Spanish follows a common syllabus framework for the teaching and examining of modern languages in the Leaving Certificate. The syllabus aims to develop learners’ communicative skills in the Spanish, to develop their strategies for effective language learning and raise their awareness of cultural, social and political diversity.