Irish Paper 2 (H): No curve balls and no surprises

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Reaction to Leaving Cert 2022 Irish Paper 2 (Higher Level) by Dr. Michael Casey, Irish teacher at The Institute of Education.

This was a fair and accessible paper, with no curve balls and no surprises. Students who studied and prepared with past exam papers will be well rewarded.

Students will have been delighted to see the poem Colscaradh make an appearance on the paper, although there would have been a challenge in the An Trail question.


The first comprehension was on an Irish poet and the second was on Irish traditional music.

There were no surprises in this section and students who practiced with past papers will have been rewarded.

Both comprehensions were very student-led and gave the stronger students an opportunity to show their ability in question 6a (grammar) and 6b (an opinion piece on how you felt about the text).


Similarly to last year, students had the choice of answering a question on prose or poetry. Within prose, there was further choice and both questions were very accessible.

A: Cáca Milis had a very similar question to previous exam papers.


B: Hurlamaboc had a nice question on the main character, which again, was very similar to a question that appeared several years ago.


Again, there were two internal choices here, and some lovely questions. Everyone will be particularly happy to see that Colscaradh made an appearance here.

A: An tEarrach Thiar
Question 1 looked at the sights and sounds of the poem.
Question 2 was lovely, and looked at the importance of repetition.
There was a very nice, normal question 3 on the life of the poet.


B: Colscaradh
Question 1 explored the differences of opinions concerning marriage. This was essentially a contrast question, which again would have rewarded students who did previous exam papers.
Question 2 looked at the importance of the last two lines, which is the ultimate part of the poem.
Question 3 was a lovely, predictable question on the life and work of the poet.


The vast majority of students would do An Trial in this section.

The question that came up would have been a slight challenge for students.

It was a two-part question, in which we look at Pádraig’s control of the mind and emotions of the young girl, and how she paid dearly for his love. It was definitely not straightforward, but if students had taken their time here, and looked at the main character and his influence, then they should have found it more manageable.