The Junior Cert Music course is designed to enable all students, to acquire musical skills suited to their age, varying abilities and musical experiences. To this end, music has been defined here in terms of musicality as expressed through a broad set of media and genres.
The course requires that students show ability in three key areas
The Junior Cert Music exam consists of two Levels - Ordinary and Higher - and two components, namely, a practical exam (performing), lasting about 15 minutes and counting towards 25% of a student’s grade, held in April, and written paper (listening, composing and general study), lasting two hours, held in June. The Junior Cert Music Practical Exam means there’s a little less pressure at exam time but students need to have some level of musical ability or experience.
At Ordinary Level, candidates perform two pieces in one activity and take an unprepared test. At JC Higher Level Music, candidates perform four pieces in one Higher Level activity or two pieces in each of two Ordinary Level activities ( and, in addition, take an unprepared test which consists of any of the following tests: sight-reading, aural memory (rhythm), aural memory (melody), or improvisation. The practical performance for JC Music may include
● Solo song singing
● Recognised choir or orchestra
● Ensemble–vocal, instrumental, accompanying
● Solo instrument
● Solo Irish instrument
● All others
The written exam consists of Listening, Composing and General Study, covering wide variety of music genres that Junior Cert Music Students study in during 1st, 2nd and 3rd year.