In the junior cycle, students consolidate and develop the skills which they bring to post-primary school. They are empowered to assume ownership of Irish.

  • Students communicate in an effective, interactive, confident manner, both personally and in communicating with other users.
  • Students enjoy creative communication and express themselves through consolidation of their literacy skills.
  • Students engage in a range of texts in various ways and gain an appreciation for Irish literature.
  • The fostering and development of awareness is emphasised: language and cultural awareness as well as students’ self-awareness as language learners.



  • Studying Irish helps students to build on their learning to date and to enhance their skills so they can enjoy using the Irish language. Through learning languages, students are provided with the opportunity to gain the understanding, knowledge and skills to develop their personal, cognitive and social development, as well as their effective participation.
  • Knowledge of transferable skills and mastery of a language such as Irish will be critical both for learning and in their life in general.
  • By learning, acquiring and using Irish, students discover information, develop thinking skills, and express opinions and emotions.
  • A particular level of competence in the Irish language is required in different employment areas in Ireland and overseas.
  • By studying Irish, students are given the opportunity to identify with the language community4 and participate in it.
  • By thinking about and studying Irish and elements of the Irish culture, students’ awareness of the culture of the language grows. Often this appreciation encourages students to consider their own place in the world and to think about cultural identity.



A mark is awarded after two years of preparation for the Junior Certificate.

Over the two years after first year, pupils study two short stories, one complete play, five poems or songs and one complete novel (for Higher Level only). 
Assessment is done on an ongoing process which includes the keeping of a Portfolio of pupils’ work, two Classroom-based Assessment, a Assessment Task set by the SEC during the school year and finally, a Written  examination in June of the second year.
The pupils’ language portfolio allows the pupils to display their choice of classwork and the classroom-based assessments allow for the informal assessing of pupils. The emphasis can then be on their oral and interactive skills, which are not assessed in the final June exams. These tasks help to track the pupils’ progress over time.

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