Junior Cycle

What is the Junior Cycle?

Almost all junior cycle students take courses leading to the Junior Certificate, the State examination taken at the end of the third year of junior cycle, when students are 15 years of age. While a majority of subjects are assessed as part of the Junior Certificate Examination, the Junior Cycle provision also includes a number of subjects that are integral to the curriculum, but are not formally assessed in this way. The inclusion of these subjects in the curriculum ensures that students receive a broad, balanced education that introduces them to all the areas of experience relevant to the needs of learners at this age and stage of their development. Non-examination subjects at Junior Cycle include Physical Education, Social, Personal and Health Education and Religious Education.

Junior Cycle Subjects

The core subjects are as follows:

  • Irish 
  • English
  • Mathematics
  • History
  • Geography
  • Science
  • Wellbeing (CSPE / SPHE / Physical Education)
  • Religion

Optional subjects are: 

  • Home Economics or Woodwork 
  • Art Craft and Design or Metalwork 
  • Business Studies or Technical Graphics
  • Spanish or Technology
In line with the new Junior Cycle, subjects are studied at Common Level apart from English, Irish and Maths which can be studied at Higher or Ordinary level.
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