Junior Cert music: Harmonius response to paper with few key changes

Stronger students given opportunity to shine

Music teachers said they were “very please” with the exam. Photo: iStock

Music teachers said they were “very please” with the exam. Photo: iStock


Small and subtle changes on this year’s higher-level music paper allowed students to think clearly, while the stronger students were given the opportunity to shine in some challenging questions.

Mary McFadden, a music teacher at Loreto Balbriggan, said that she was “very pleased” with the paper.

“The language on the paper was particularly clear while, in its physical layout, it had lots of space; this allows students to really focus on what is being asked.”

Music students have already completed a practical exam, singing or playing music pieces in April, and this accounts for 25 per cent of their overall marks. The written exam includes listening, composing and general study sections.

“In the section on Irish music, students were asked to ‘describe the accompaniment’, which makes them really think about what is going on,” said Ms McFadden, an ASTI subject representative.

“In another part, they were asked to describe two musical features of their chosen song from a list that included melody, rhythm, tonality and form.”

The ordinary level paper was clear and well laid out, said Ms McFadden. “There was a lot of multiple choice and plenty of opportunity to pick up marks along the way.”

Around 7,676 girls and 3,017 boys sat this year’s junior cert music exam, with 9,186 of them taking the higher level paper