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Assessment of student achievement

at Junior Cycle

Junior cycle students will receive a new Junior Cycle Profile of Achievement (JCPA).
The JCPA will reflect a much wider range of your child’s achievements over the three years of junior cycle. The JCPA will report on a number of areas, including:-

1. Subjects
2. Classroom Based Assessments
3. Short courses
4. Other Learning Experiences

Subjects

Schools will be able to choose from a total of 21 different subjects for inclusion on their Junior Cycle programme.

All subjects are being revised and each one will have its own specification replacing what was previously known as a syllabus. Each specification describes the learning that takes place as part of the student's study of a subject in junior cycle.

By 2019 all new subject specifications will have been introduced. Students can study a maximum of 10 subjects for the JCPA, and if their school offers short courses they can study 9 subjects plus 2 short courses or 8 subjects plus 4 short courses for certification purposes.

The state examination that students sit in their subject at the end of their junior cycle will also be graded differently.
Instead of A, B, C, D, E, F and NG the following descriptors will now be used:

New subject specifications are being implemented in schools on a phased basis. See timeline opposite. 

Classroom Based Assessments (CBAs)

Classroom Based Assessments (CBAs) provide students with opportunities to demonstrate their learning and skills in ways not possible in a pen and paper examination, for example, their verbal communication and investigation skills. CBAs will be undertaken in subjects and short courses and will be facilitated by the classroom teacher.

CBAs will be undertaken during a defined time period within normal class contact time and to a national timetable. Students will complete one CBA in second year and one in third year.

Once the second CBA is completed students in third year will complete a written Assessment Task.

This task, set by the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment (NCCA), is undertaken during normal class time and will be sent to the State Examinations Commission (SEC) for marking.

This Assessment Task will be worth 10% of the overall mark in the case of most subjects. At the end of third year, students will sit the final SEC examination in June.

CBAs will be reported on in the JCPA using the following descriptors:-

  • Exceptional
  • Above Expectations
  • In Line with Expectations
  • Yet to Meet Expectations

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