Leaving Certificate German

German is the second most popular European language for LC. Like all the languages, the exam is geared to let you show off your knowledge rather than to show what you don't know.

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In the exam, it's really important that you keep an eye on the clock and avoid the temptation to run over time perfecting one section at the cost of not finishing your last question. The reading comprehension part is worth most at both higher and ordinary level. Remember to be accurate, watch your grammar, read the question carefully and practice comprehensions regularly. 

Many students fail to prepare properly for the listening comprehension (Aural) test which takes up the first 40 mins of the written exam. You will find all the past recordings along with questions and answers in the Studyclix Aural topics. The German Oral (Speaking) exam is a 15 minute interview in March/ April. It is worth practicing speaking and thinking in German aloud as often as possible. You'll find some advice on preparing for your oral on our blog.

German Course Content

  • Oral (speaking)
  • Written
  • Aural (listening)
  • Reading

The Exam

Section                        Higher Level      Ordinary Level

Speaking                           25%                   20%

Listening Comprehension    20%                   25%

Reading Comprehension     30%                   40%

Writing                              25%                   15%


At Higher Level the Reading Comprehension has a journalistic reading text, followed by questions testing comprehension, language awareness, applied grammar and your ability to give an opinion on the topic. The written section has a formal or informal letter or an essay-type response to a picture.

At Ordinary Level you do one literary and two journalistic comprehensions with similar exercises to Higher Level. Written exercises include letters, telling a story from a given series of pictures or writing a dialogue.


Future Careers with Leaving Certificate German

Germany is one of the strongest economies in Europe and one of Ireland's main trading partners. Many Irish companies need professionals with a good knowledge of German. German is also a requirement for some CAO courses.


Download the leaving cert German Syllabus

Download the leaving cert German Chief Examiner's Report (2016) 

Download the leaving cert German Guidelines for Teachers