What to do if you’re unhappy with your Leaving Cert grades

Check your scripts if you think you should have received a better grade

There is no charge for viewing a script and no limit to the number of scripts you can view. Photograph: iStock

There is no charge for viewing a script and no limit to the number of scripts you can view. Photograph: iStock


If you feel you should have done better, you can view your script to decide if it’s worth having it rechecked. If you have any questions about your Leaving Cert results, you can get free, expert advice, in real time, from our career guidance panel at irishtimes.com/resultsandoffers2019.

If you are unhappy with a particular grade in any subject in the Leaving Cert, or if there is an identifiable error in the results you got today, the State Examinations Commission (SEC) will give you whatever support you need to rectify the problem.

Errors on your results sheet

First, in the case of an error on your results sheet, bring this to the attention of your school principal immediately, or in the case of external candidates, contact the SEC directly.

You may have taken a subject at higher level and received an ordinary-level grade. Or you may be missing an entire subject on your results sheet or have received a grade for a subject you did not take in your Leaving Cert. In all these cases, it is simply an administrative error and will be rectified immediately.

There may be some delay in the correction being registered with the CAO system, so you may not get the correct offer you are entitled to on Thursday this week, but rest assured, if it is a case of SEC administrative error, you will very quickly receive the course offer to which you are entitled.

If, on the other hand, there is no factual error on the report sheet but your grade is not what you expected, you must immediately go online through your access codes to the Leaving Cert Candidate Self-Service Portal and indicate what papers you wish to view.

The application to appeal results through the Candidate Self Service Portal will be available from 5pm on Friday 16th August, closing at 5pm on Thursday 22nd August. The SEC will then make the appealed scripts available to examiners for remarking.

How do I view the script?

You must personally view the script: you cannot send someone to view it on your behalf, although you may be accompanied by a parent or teacher or someone else you nominate. Several subjects which were marked online in 2019 will be viewed online through the Self-Service Portal. They are mathematics, biology, physics, chemistry, LCVP (written component) and politics and society. Viewing (online and in schools) is taking place 10 days earlier this year.

There is no charge for viewing a script and no limit to the number of scripts you can view. As you will be able to see the exact percentage you got once you view your script, you should view every script if you’re looking for another five or 10 points for a place on your preferred course.

The viewing of scripts in schools takes place at the earlier time this year of Tuesday 20th and Wednesday 21st August. The application to view scripts will be available through the Candidate Self Service Portal from 9am on Wednesday 14th August and this service closes at 5pm on Friday 16th August.

Online viewing of scripts will be available from 5pm on Tuesday 20th August until 5pm on Wednesday 21st August. Candidates who notice any issues with their online marked scripts during the viewing are advised to contact the SEC’s online marking team.

Should I view a script if I’m happy with the grade I received?

Each grade, such as H1, H2 or H3, represents a 10 per cent band. The SEC sends out scripts to be remarked by teachers in a week’s time – about 20 per cent of such papers are upgraded annually .

One could therefore assume those candidates who are within 1 per cent of the next grade up stand a higher chance of receiving an upgrade than those who are 9 per cent short.

By viewing all your scripts, you will know in which subject you are closest to the next grade. It may not necessarily be the subject in which you are disappointed with the result.

What if I discover an error in calculating my score on a marked paper?

In the event that you discover a discrepancy between the mark awarded and grade awarded  you should ask the organising Superintendent for a Rectification Outside the Appeals Process Form (ROAP form) and complete it in accordance with instructions.

The ROAP only applies in specific circumstances of an error in transcribing the overall mark from the front of the answer book to the marking sheet or an error in keying the mark from the mark sheet onto the SEC examinations database.

Other issues will require the expert judgment of an examiner through the formal appeals process and cannot be resolved through this administrative facility.

Note, the SEC says it strongly recommends that candidates applying for the ROAP process also apply to appeal their result.

If the case for rectification is upheld the appeal fee will be refunded. But, if the case for rectification is not upheld and the candidate has not applied for an appeal they will not have any further opportunity for review of their result as they will have missed the appeal application deadline of 5pm on Thursday 22nd August.

In the event that you discover a discrepancy between the mark awarded and grade awarded in a script that was marked online you should contact the Online Marking Team in the SEC at onlinemarkingqueries@examinations.ie or (090) 644 2768/2460/2869.

What if I think I should have received a higher mark?

Finally, if on viewing your script there are no obvious errors in the correcting teacher’s work but in your view (or that of your subject teacher) you should have received a higher mark for the paper in question, you can apply to have your paper re-marked through the Candidate Self-Service Portal. There is a fee of €40 for this work but if the paper is upgraded, this will be refunded.

The results of appeals are published in mid-September and if you are one of the 20 per cent who appeal each year and are upgraded, the revised Leaving Cert result will be sent to the CAO and it will make you a revised offer if appropriate.

If you are already studying for another course, you will not suffer any adverse college-related financial costs because of transferring to another programme at that stage.

For more information read the Candidate Information Booklet 2019 or visit: examinations.ie.