Junior Cert Business: Brexit and strikes feature on topical paper
Paper provided a good chance for applicants to apply their knowledge to current affairs
“State Examinations Commission has made an effort to make the paper as topical as possible.” Photograph: iStock
Topical questions on Brexit, economic growth and industrial relations appeared in “fair and balanced” Junior Cert business exams.
Ruairí Farrell, a teacher at Coláiste Chraobh Abhann, Co Wicklow, said well-prepared students were well able to manage both papers in Tuesday’s exams.
“The current affairs questions were very welcome as issues like Brexit would have been discussed in classes up and down the country,” said Mr Farrell, who is also a TUI subject representative.
“It’s welcome as the syllabus is outdated, but it’s clear the State Examinations Commission has made an effort to make the paper as topical as possible.”
The Brexit question said the Government reduced its forecast for GDP growth to 3.5 per cent in 2017 due to Britain’s decision to leave the European Union. Candidates were asked to explain the benefits to Ireland of being a member of the European Union, as well as the impact of Brexit on Irish exporters and Irish people who want to travel to the UK.
Industrial-relations disputes also appeared in the paper, a topical issue for many given those affected by bus and teachers’ strikes.
Candidates were asked, for example, to explain “three forms of industrial action that trade unions can take to support their claims against an employer”, as well as reasons why disputes arise, other than pay.
“It was a good chance for applicants to apply their knowledge to a range of current-affairs issues, “ said Mr Farrell.
More challenging sections of the papers included a question of life assurance, which some students found tough.
Another question, on assessing a business based on financial results, posed difficulties for some students, he said.
Padraig McWeeney, a teacher at St Mel’s, Longford, said there was enough in the papers that was familiar, which gave students a chance to demonstrate their knowledge.
“It was presented in a familiar format, which would have given many students a chance to build their confidence,” said Mr McWeeney, who is a subject representative for the ASTI.
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