Leaving Cert 2021 acquired off to an early and constructive begin for college kids sitting the brand new topic of pc science, with basic settlement from academics that the papers had been honest.
p to 500 candidates had been entered for the examination, comprising of a written paper and an internet component, the place college students needed to modify and add to a pc program and save their solutions on a reminiscence stick.
Like all Leaving Cert exams this yr, college students had been provided much more selection in and between inquiries to take account of months of Covid-related college closures.
Affiliation of Secondary Lecturers’ Eire (ASTI) topic consultant Mark Walshe mentioned college students welcomed the additional selection, though some nonetheless discovered it difficult and total there was a “blended response”.
Mr Walshe, who teaches at St Finian’s Group School, Swords, Co Dublin, mentioned whereas the quick questions at greater stage had been OK, among the Part B questions, had been “very lengthy” and college students might have struggled to reply a full single query.
In Part C, the computer-based paper, he mentioned greater stage college students would have “wanted a great understanding to get by way of the query”. At odd stage, it was “pretty simple”.
Tony McGennis of Errigal School, Letterkenny, Co Donegal mentioned the papers mirrored the spirit of the course in that college students needed to apply information and abilities, slightly than rehashing information.
“Drawback-solving was to the fore and these abilities in computation considering and coding had been realized by practising over the 2 years, ” he mentioned.
Pauric O’Donnell of St Eunan’s, Letterkenny, agreed that the upper stage paper was true to the specification and it was a “honest examination with just a few difficult elements”
Suzanne Linnane of Adamstown Group School Co Dublin mentioned some elements at greater stage had been ”surprising and shocking however not in a foul manner.”
Martin O’Keeffe of Colaiste Bríde, Clondalkin, Co Dublin mentioned the upper stage paper introduced “a pleasant problem” that allowed for a “and sense of accomplishment once you accomplished it” .
Colm Kiely, of Sacred Coronary heart Secondary Faculty, Clonakilty, Co Cork, thought the upper stage paper was “powerful, however the selection helped.”
He described the quick questions as OK, and mentioned Part B was a “step up from final yr,” which was the primary time the topic was examined. Mr Kiely mentioned the computer-based component as “particularly reasonable”.
Quite a lot of academics commented that the ultimate a part of the computer-based paper was “difficult”.
At odd stage, one instructor regarded the examination as ”just like greater stage final yr however the selection helped.” It was not unfair, the instructor mentioned
This yr, and in November 2020, the examination was taken by college students in 39 colleges that piloted the topic. About 50 extra colleges took it on final September and subsequent September college students in about 140 colleges might be doing the topic,
On the all-girls’ Colaiste Bride, Clondalkin, uptake within the topic is rising steadily , and instructor Sarah-Jayne Carey inspired colleagues in different colleges to tackle what she described as ”an excellent topic to show”.
Adrienne Webb, chair of the Computer systems in Training Society Eire (CESI) mentioned there was loads of curiosity within the topic and it might go from power to power, however, in the meanwhile, the problem was encouraging sufficient academics to upskill and take it on.