Introduction to English

The essential aim of teaching English at Junior Cycle is to reinforce and continue the work of the primary school in nurturing the intellectual, imaginative and emotional growth of each student by developing his or her personal proficiency in the arts and skills of language. English in junior cycle aims to develop students’ knowledge of language and literature, to consolidate and deepen their literacy skills and make them more self-aware as learners.

More specifically it encourages all students:

  • to be creative through language and to gain enjoyment and continuing personal growth from English in all its forms
  • to develop control over English using it and responding to it with purpose and effect through the interconnected literacy skills of oral language, reading and writing
  • to engage personally with and think critically about an increasingly broad range of spoken, written and multimodal texts
  • to develop an informed appreciation of literature through personal encounters with a variety of literary texts
  • to use their literacy skills to manage information needs, and find, use, synthesise, evaluate and communicate information using a variety of media
  • to gain an understanding of the grammar and conventions of English and how they might be used to promote clear and effective communication.



The English exam can be completed at Higher or Ordinary Level.

The exam is a single paper completed over 2 hours.

In second year pupils will complete their Classroom Based Assessment 1 (CBA1) at the end of second year.

In third year pupils will complete their CBA 2 before Christmas.

Pupils will complete an Assessment Task before Christmas which is worth 10% of their overall grade.

Useful Tips

  1. Practice exam style answers and timing yourself. Practice makes perfect in English and your writing can only benefit from doing so.
  2. Prepare some material on topics you are interested in, maybe fashion, sport, travel or music. Keep these in a journal and maybe weave them into the essay or writing exercises that come up on Paper I.
  3. Write out a list of key sections from each of our texts you are studying this will help with your note taking.
  4. Prepare sample answers during the year and use them to prepare for your exam.
  5. When studying English spend half of your time learning and the other half applying it on paper practicing your reading and writing skills.

Useful websites for students

**Columba College Killucan and LWETB are not responsible for the content of third party websites**