Leaving Cert wraps up with five papers on final day

State exams finish with applied maths, religion, Italian, Japanese and technology

An estimated 2,070 candidates took Friday morning’s applied maths exam in the Leaving Cert. This ran concurrently with the religion paper, which 1,290 students sat. File photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times

An estimated 2,070 candidates took Friday morning’s applied maths exam in the Leaving Cert. This ran concurrently with the religion paper, which 1,290 students sat. File photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times

 

After 13 intense days, the Leaving Cert has drawn to a close for about 5,000 students who had one last paper to sit.

The final exams were in applied maths, religious education, Italian, Japanese and technology.

An estimated 2,070 candidates took Friday morning’s applied maths exam. This ran concurrently with the religion paper, which 1,290 students sat.

Hilary Dorgan, an applied maths teacher at the Institute of Education, said the higher- level paper was fairer than in recent years.

“A well-prepared student who had a good understanding of the concepts and who can remain calm under stressful examination conditions had the chance to do well here.

Tough going

On the religious education exam, ASTI subject representative Michael Purcell said both higher and ordinary level papers were open and fair, and in keeping with previous papers, but questions required careful interpretation.

Fiona Byrne, TUI subject representative for technology, said the higher level paper was “fresh and very relevant, with lots of nice examples, including the Google driverless car and the materials used in construction of the Luas”.

She said the ordinary level paper was nicely pitched, with a wide range of questions.

Technology, now in its eighth year as a standalone subject, is akin to a product design course, and was taken by about 240 girls and 1,122 boys.

Shelly Martin, who teaches Japanese to 23 students at Firhouse Community College, said the higher level exam was “fairly challenging, but not unfair”.

Finally, Robbie Cronin, ASTI subject representative for Italian, which was taken by 455 students, said the higher level exam had nothing untoward in the literature pieces, although a journalistic passage was “challenging but doable”.

Overall, he said it was a good paper.