Junior Cycle Assessment
The Framework for Junior Cycle (2015) brought with it changes including in the area of assessment. One of these has been the the introduction of Classroom based assessments the CBAs.
Classroom Based Assessment (CBA)
As the name suggests they happen in the classroom during normal class time. They resemble the learning that happens on a daily basis. Each subject has their own particular CBAs which can be found in the subject Specification. The CBA provides a ‘snapshot’ of the student at the time of completion which is set by the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment (NCCA).
One of these Classroom-Based Assessments takes place in second year, and the other will happen during third year. These assessments will be drawn from a variety of types of assessment, which might include project tasks, oral language tasks, investigations, practical or designing and making tasks, field studies and artistic performance.
They will be assessed at a common level using the standards produced by the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment (NCCA) . Students are awarded one of the following Descriptors:
• Above expectations
• In line with expectations
• Yet to meet expectations.
Following the CBA the students will undertake an assessment task.
What is an Assessment Task?
Following the CBA completed in third year, students will complete a written Assessment Task (AT) on what they have learned and the skills and competences that they have developed in that assessment. The Assessment Task will be marked by the State Examinations Commission (SEC). The dual approach to assessment is hoped to recognise and value the different types of learning that take place in schools and will allow for a more rounded assessment of the education of each young person. It will account for up to 10% of the state-certified examination and will be incorporated into the grade that a student receives for their final SEC examination.
The Final Exam:
At the end of Third Year the boys will sit their final examination. They will take place in June. The timetable will be set by the SEC. Examinations for subjects under the new Junior Cycle will be no longer than two hours duration (see Phased introduction of the Junior Cycle). The new Junior Cycle exams will be taken in a maximum of ten subjects only. With the exception of English, Mathematics and Irish where there will be two levels (higher and ordinary), all other subjects will be assessed at a common level.
These examinations will be assessed by SEC using the following set of grades:
· Higher Merit
· Partially Achieved
Junior Cycle Profile of Achievement (JCPA)
The JCPA outlines the achievements the student over the course of his three years. The Descriptors (results) from the final examination, the CBA Descriptors and OALs are recorded on the JCPA. This is presented to students in 4th Year. See Sample of Junior Cycle Profile of Achievement (JCPA)