Modern Languages Department

Teachers within The Institute of Education’s Modern Languages Department are committed and have extensive experience working within the Leaving Certificate examination system.

Many have written widely used languages textbooks for the Leaving Certificate and Junior Cycle curriculums, others correct exam papers for the State Exams Commission.

All teachers focus on strengthening and developing the language skills of their students, while maintaining a clear focus on what is required to maximise performance in the Leaving Certificate exams.

Why study French for the Leaving Certificate?
A foreign language is one of the requirements needed to progress to third-level college in Ireland and as France is one of our closest neighbours, being able to speak and understand the language becomes a huge asset in the workplace.

What sort of student does French suit?
Studying French for the Leaving Certificate requires a willingness to work regularly at learning new vocabulary, reading different types of texts and experimenting with what has been learnt in order to express your own opinion. It is ideally suited to those interested in discovering another culture.

What is the approach to teaching French in the Institute?
At the Institute all tuition is provided by French native speakers. The four exam areas (oral, aural, written and reading) are each covered in specific classes, with attention paid to exam technique and past papers. The higher level course is also taught at two different paces to suit student abilities and mock oral interviews, with feedback, are held at regular intervals throughout the year.  Regular testing and homework is a constant feature of the classes, and students are provided with precise, exam-focused notes for every topic covered.

Why study Irish for the Leaving Certificate?
With Irish being taught at top universities in America, Canada, Sweden, Germany, the UK and China, Irish speakers are in demand more than ever. Students with fluency in Irish can also enjoy working as translators with the EU in either Luxembourg or Belgium. Not to mention the numerous areas of employment here in Ireland, which include our media, education, journalism, animation and the creative arts.

What sort of student does Irish suit?
With 40% of the exam mark now going for the oral interview, a student who enjoys languages and speaking Irish and likes to listen to Irish on the radio and television will do well in this subject.

What is the approach to teaching Irish at the Institute?
At the Institute, we focus on strengthening and developing the Irish language skills of all students. Vocabulary is expanded, so that students can discuss current social and political issues, and contemporary and traditional Irish literature is explored in great detail. Students build their aural skills in order to understand all three dialects spoken on the Island. Finally, our students are given the tools to be able to speak Irish in a natural and fluid manner.

We also focus heavily on exam technique and marking schemes and students are expected to put these into place when doing homework, class tests or monthly tests. Constructive feedback is then given to the student regarding the best way to increase their grades further.

The aim of Leaving Certificate Mandarin Chinese is to develop learners’ ability to use Mandarin Chinese for communicative purposes and to explore the interdependence between language and culture.

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