Leaving Cert: Design and communication graphics paper very fair, say teachers

‘Because of the surplus time, students would be afforded the opportunity to take risks’

Leaving cert, junior cert exam

Teachers have described this year’s design and communication graphics as very fair, with enough choice for anyone who has covered the course.

Seosamh Mac Ceallabhuí, subject representative for the Teachers’ Union of Ireland and a teacher at Coláiste Ailigh in Letterkenny, Co Donegal, said most students would have been happy.

“There was a very fair choice,” he said. “All well-prepared students would have been well able to answer three short questions where an interpenetration question was presented for the first time in a while.”

Robert Kiernan, design and communication graphics teacher at the Institute of Education in Dublin, also praised the amount of choice on the paper.


“Because of the surplus time, students would be afforded the opportunity to take risks and attempt questions they wouldn’t normally have the confidence to try,” Mr Kiernan said.

“Whether a student is a visual learner or learns through procedure, they should have been able to create a plan of attack for this paper.”

Mr Mac Ceallabhuí, however, said there were appropriate challenges on the paper.

“Question C(2) was a hyperboloid of revolution which students can find challenging at times,” he said.

Mr Kiernan said students would have been happy to see question A1, which was about skew lines.

“Question A2 was based on conic sections,” he added.

“Unlike previous years, there were very few prompts and very little information given in the question, and if students had relied on past papers for their revision, they may have been a bit confused here. This was a very binary question. If a student is a procedural learner, this question would suit them. However, students who rely more on their visualisation skills may have found it more challenging.

“Question C1 was on geologic geometry. It was a standard question but will probably be avoided by students as there was a lot going on in it and it was more time consuming than the questions in section B.

“C2 was on structural forms. Part (c) of the question, which dealt with the positions of the directrix, was quite tricky. Just like A2, this question played on a students’ ability to remember a procedure.”

On the ordinary level paper, Mr Mac Ceallabhuí said most students would be happy enough, although, he said, “Question B1 on axonometric [projections] was challenging.”