Irish is one of the subjects available in our programme of weekly grinds for the academic year 2022-2023.
Students attending our weekly grinds receive:
- Access to expert teachers
- Answers to their questions
- Exam focused notes
- Exam strategies & examiner insights
- Recordings of all live classes to re-watch right up to the end of the 2023 Leaving Certificate exams
What does it take to get a H1 in Higher Level Irish?
Andrea Viani-Duggan & Cian Murphy, past students from The Institute of Education who achieved a H1 in Leaving Cert higher level Irish, describe how they got top marks.
Stay on point!
Waffling does not give the right message. When I was studying I created a summary page for each poem and prose extract. I wrote each question title in a box and then wrote the points for the answer in one word summaries underneath. If the question was 14 marks, 7 or 8 points would suffice. If it was a 10 mark question, then 5 points were enough.
The oral exam
The key to this exam is to vary tenses, use good vocabulary, and maintain a conversational tone to your answers. The examiner will appreciate that you have learnt passages about where you live and what your pastimes are, but the delivery is as important as the content.
Prepare interesting facts about yourself, so that they remember you for the right reasons!
I used to pretend I was speaking about a subject in English. I then translated the English script into Irish as best as I could. You are more likely to remember the script in Irish, if you naturally recall the information in English. This idea can also be applied to the picture sequences – practice translating what you observe in English, and then translate into Irish!
The Oral Exam
The aim of the game in the oral exam is to keep talking! Even if you make a few errors over the course of the conversation, they won’t bear massively on your grade. If you make a mistake, don’t be afraid to correct yourself. Make sure you know the 20 Sraith Pictiúr inside-out. Not only do they get you off to a good start, but they also provide you with vocabulary on topics which can be helpful for Paper 1 of the written exam.
The Aural Exam
The aural exam takes place first so it gives you a real opportunity to settle down. To prepare, tune in to RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta every couple of days. Listening to Irish speakers at a natural and fluent speed is very helpful, especially as each track in the aural is played only twice.
Remember to always maintain a definite, continuous connection with the title. Grammar wise, know where to use the séimhiú and úrú and make sure to give plenty of examples of the Tuiseal Ginideach and Briathar Saor.
I found it useful to do this paper backwards, i.e. start with the literature questions and finish with the comprehensions. In that way, my time wasn’t consumed by looking for answers in the reading comprehensions. The most important thing with the literature questions is to cover all the prescribed prose and poetry and not hedge your bets on what came up last year!
Reaction to 2022 Irish Exam Paper 2
Each year, our exceptional teachers give their take on the Leaving Certificate higher level exam papers.
See what Dr. Michael Casey, Irish teacher at The Institute of Education, had to say about the 2022 Higher Level Paper 1 in this short video.
To view reactions to previous year’s Irish exam papers please browse videos below or visit our YouTube channel.
“If you go off the point you could possibly lose everything!”
For years, our experienced teachers have helped students to hone their exam technique and develop a deep subject knowledge.
In this short video from 2017, Irish teacher Clare Grealy steps through Paper 1 and Paper 2 of the higher level Irish exam and explains what students need to remember when they are revising to ensure they get the best possible grade.