In 4th year, as a foundation for the Leaving Certificate, it is college policy that all students participate in the Transition Year programme. Working on a modular basis each subject develops a course that is academic in nature. Yet, while academics remain at the core of Transition Year, students get the opportunity to explore new educational avenues and experiences, gain new skills, and to take on challenges less academic in nature. It is student-focused, activity-based learning that complements the Leaving Certificate programme and challenges the student body.
To support the academic core during Transition Year all students have four examinations in the basic subjects of English, Irish, mathematics and a modern language. For non-core subjects, the students are introduced to optional subjects (available for 5th year) in order to make an informed choice in preparation for the Leaving Certificate cycle. These choices are supported by guidance classes.
Further to the academic choices we also offer transition modules that include a combination of compulsory and optional modules such as first aid, ECDL (European Computer Driving Licence), public speaking, law, drama, driving, photography and fencing. As part of their general development students are required to arrange a work experience placement for themselves for a two week period in the spring. (This may be a two week placement in one place of employment, or two separate one week placements in different places of employment.)
This is also an ideal time for students to experience new cultures. In Transition Year students have options of a winter sports tour, cultural trips to some of the main cities in France, Spain and Germany and, for the student who likes a total immersion experience, going on a language exchange to a host family and school in continental Europe. The Transition Year programme is a rewarding experience for students, allowing them to develop their academic skills and to grow as individuals.