All The Leaving Cert posts
  • avatar image

    What subjects to choose for Leaving Cert? caitlinfinn

    I am currently in Third year but my teachers keep telling me to choose my subjects now while i have time as the choice applications are released during the mocks. Any past/ current leaving cert students could you please tell me what subjects you liked/disliked and why? I want to do Primary teaching when I leave...

    1. avatar image


      It is vital you choose subjects that are of interest to you. You want to walk into those classes every day and be happy that you're there. You must be interested in learning about that subject area.

      I am very mathematically inclined so I am doing the 3 core english irish and maths, along with physics, chemistry, business, engineering and applied maths. These 8 Subjects are at higher level but keep in mind you are only marked on your best 8. I am weaker at english and irish hence i chose a7th and 8th subject to make up for the possible poor grades in those subjects. But most people will only do 7 which is perfectly fine.

      Subjects at leaving cert are more difficult naturally but are not outlandish they simply demand more understanding. For example in junior cert science you may have learned that a resistor in an electronic circuit reduces the flow of current. In leaving cert physics you will learn how the resistor does this not just what it does.

      Sadly i cannot say what subjects are easy in general as I am mathematically minded so I may not be representative of you. But I can say is pick the topics you like. The only time you should pick a subject you dont like as much is if it is required for your course.

      For example alot of college courses (NOT ALL OF THEM) need french or a second language of some sort. In this case even if you get the points required for the course you are not allowed enter the course if you lack the language.

      In the case of Primary Teaching at Dublin city university (DCU) you are expected to have the following entry requirements (remember without these you cannot get into the course regardless of your points)

      Higher level c3 in at least 3 subjects one of which MUST be Irish

      Minimum of Ordinary D3 in three other subjects to include OC3 or HD3 in English and OD3 in Mathematics.

      In 2015 points were 385 but these can rise or fall depending on demand ie high amount of people wanna join the course points will rise.

      A test, portfolio and interview are also part of applying for this course. THis may not apply to all courses but it is important to know if it does.

      Quallifax is a useful website for finding this kind of information or the website of the college of your choice.

      Here is a link to the primary teaching course in DCU as found on quallifax

      If youde like me to run through anything else or have any questions let me know

    2. avatar image


      Thanks so much! That's so helpful 😊

    3. avatar image


      I'm currently in fifth year and I'm doing Business, Biology, History and French along with English, Irish and Maths.

      I chose these subjects because I enjoyed them which is very important because you'll be doing them for 2 years. It's good to have a language because it opens up so many opportunities not just for college but when you finish school.

      History involves essay writing for the most part so I would only recommend it if you have a genuine interest in history. As well as this the is a project worth 20% and you have to research an area of history that you are interested in.

      Many people think biology is an easy subject but there is a huge amount of learning and detail involved especially at higher level. Compared to the other sciences its not mathematical and it involves learning a bout plants, the human body, genetics, bacteria etc.

      Business is a subject that involves learning about what's going on in the world in terms of employment, how businesses are run and managed etc. It's a living, breathing, dynamic subject which makes it really interesting.

      If you're hoping to do primary teaching you'll definitely need higher level irish so really work hard at irish in 3rd year and choose subjects that interest you.

    4. avatar image


      Thank you! 😊

    5. avatar image


      Physics, Engineering, DCG, and French mainly because I enjoy them and they suit my future career.

      You should choose the subjects that you enjoy and that you are good at

    6. avatar image


      Thanks a lot!!

    7. avatar image


      Hi Caitlin,

      For leaving cert I chose 3 subjects I enjoyed the must at junior cert - Biology, geography and Economics.

      I was never a science person but it is recommended to take one science subject. however biology is very interesting and is a great subject if you are willing to sit down and learn it - but it is very do-able! summary tables at ends of chapters are often great ways of learning the bulk of a biology chapter.

      Geography is my favourite subject and i find it very interesting, which makes it easy to learn because i want to. It has great variation from physical (volcanoes, earthquakes etc) to human geography such as studying regions (e.g the West of Ireland) and urbanisation.

      In Economics, i preferred business at junior cert and preferred theory to the accounting side. I chose economics over business because there is a lot of choice on the paper, and it is very practicle and interesting, learning about world economies etc, i find it interesting. The same could be said for business at leaving cert, but apparently it's a much bigger course. This isn't a huge deal but just something to think about.

      Finally, like others have said, if you want to do primary teaching i would say work hard at Irish!

      In sum, pick subjects you most enjoyed at junior cert. 'Easy points subjects' is pure crap. It's easier to get points in subjects you enjoy learning about!!

      Hope this helps! :)

    8. avatar image


      Thank you so much!!

    9. avatar image


      The subjects I chose were Economics, Geography, Physics and French

      I chose French as it's recommended to have a foreign language and Physics because it's recommended to have a science subject. I think Physics is the best of the sciences, it's said to be really hard and it is quite difficult but every other LC subject is just as hard.

      Geography is often said to be easy but that's wrong. You need to be able to write essays well and there's a lot on the course to learn. Geography would be quite useful for many careers due to how broad the course is and is sometimes counted as a science subject

      Economics was my favourite Business Studies subject. Accounting seemed too repetitive and pointless and I preferred Economics over Business. There's loads of choice in the exam. Economics seems like an easier choice than Business to me

    10. avatar image



      I want to be a primary teacher as well - I am saying this because I am only in third year like yourself. Here are your choices of subjects and which I recommend you to do:

      Firstly, Irish, Maths and English - you all have to do anyways. However, you must do higher Irish and if you do not do this, none of the colleges will let you study for primary teaching. Some colleges I know of also say you have to do higher English (I am not) but that's only some of them - so I wouldn't worry about it that much, depending on the college you want to go to. Primary school Maths is very basic and I think ordinary Maths is good enough for primary teaching - considering it's basic.

      Geography OR History: I would recommend to do one of these and do the one, you have more interest in. Both are very basic in primary and not much you learn in primary, you learn in secondary but I still recommend you to do one of these.

      Biology, Chemistry OR Physics: I was taught the different systems of the body in primary, so I think it would benefit you to do Biology. However, there is no harm doing one of the other sciences here either. I recommend you to do one of these.

      Music / Art: You should have some knowledge of both of these subjects, but not much. Like, my primary teachers all knew some things in these subjects but mostly Art which I recommend you do (that's if you did it for JC, unlike me). If you did Music for JC, then do Music instead. It's up to you what you want the student to study, you could teach them to paint masterpieces or play music instruments or just know basic music theory or something.

      To summarise,

      Irish - higher level

      English - higher or ordinary level (depending on college)

      Maths - ordinary level (no harm in doing higher though)

      Do Geography OR History

      Do Biology, Chemistry OR Physics

      Do Music OR Art

      Business (if you did it), I don't see any benefit though for primary teaching as I wasn't taught anything to do with business in primary.

    11. avatar image



      Study a foreign language as to get into the colleges, you need to have good knowledge of a foreign language. In my case, I will study French as I studied it for JC. Study the language that you did for JC, French, Spanish, Italian or German.

    12. avatar image


      it really does come down to your strengths and what subjects interest you. i would definitely recommend doing maths, english, irish, a foreign language (ie french, german, spanish...) and a science (ie biology, physics, chemistry...). then if you decide to do 2 more, look up at about 5 college courses you might be interested in and look at their requirements. you would mainly need higher level subjects for primary teaching, but i know in Mary Immaculate, you can become a teacher while specifying in 2-3 subjects aswell which is a good backup incase in the future it is easier to get a job in a secondary school and you can do the HDip.

    13. avatar image


      Share files from your computer