Home Economics, Scientific and Social (H): A Fair And Balanced Paper

Home Economics, Scientific and Social Leaving Certificate Review 2024

Reaction to 2024 Leaving Certificate Home Economics, Scientific and Social Paper by Sandra Cleary, teacher at The Institute of Education.

  • A fair reflection of a living subject
  • The paper rewarded those with a forensic engagement with past paper and the curriculum.


Students leaving the exam hall today will likely be happy, satisfied that whatever work they did will have been fairly represented. In a pleasing contrast to last year’s overly focused short questions, this year’s group started this exam with a comprehensive selection that spanned a wide variety of different topics. This rewarded those who paid attention to the entirety of the course while not unfairly penalizing those who struggled with the full scale of the curriculum. The questions were clear, reasonable and unambiguous.

Students who really dug in to examining past papers in forensic detail, noting not just what was asked but what was due to be asked will be thrilled. The compulsory Question 1 in Section B had 38 marks, 9.5% of the actual grade, in a question on sugars that was nearly identical to that from 2017. Yet those mindful of prioritizing what was due to make a reappearance will be even more delighted with Yoghurt Production and Folic Acid/Folate, not seen since 2006 and 2007 respectively. Fats and Oils, Textiles and Consumer Protection were topics making their first appearances, again rewarding those mindful of the dynamic way that the exam represents the curriculum.

Additionally, this paper really reflected that Home Economics is a living subject, connected to the real lived experiences of contemporary society. Students who were alert to this intrinsic aspect of the subject will have found great opportunities to fuse their studies and lives in questions that prompted consideration beyond the textbook examples.

Ultimately, while everyone will be relieved to see Carbohydrates make their much-anticipated appearance, each student should also breathe a sigh of relief knowing that this paper had abundant opportunities to fairly reflect their efforts to date.