The Senior Cycle

Senior cycle education in Ireland may be of two or of three year’s duration. Students may follow a two-year Leaving Certificate programme or they may take an additional optional year at the start of their senior cycle. This year is called Transition Year.

Most students take the Leaving Certificate examination at the end of their senior cycle. Students typically choose 6 to 8 subjects from the list of approved subjects.

Students following the Leaving Certificate Vocational Programme (LCVP) take 6 or 7 Leaving Certificate subjects and two additional Link Modules: Preparation for the World of Work and Enterprise Education.

Senior Cycle Curriculum Review

A number of Leaving Certificate subjects are currently under various stages of review.

Leaving Certificate Established

The Leaving Certificate (Established) is a two-year programme that aims to provide learners with a broad, balanced education while also offering them a chance to specialise towards particular higher education and career options.

In general, students take five or more subjects (usually seven) for examination. Subjects are normally studied at either Ordinary or Higher Level. However, two subjects, Irish and Mathematics, can be studied at Foundation Level.