Leaving Certificate Vocational Programme

The Leaving Certificate Vocational Programme combines academic study with a focus on enterprise, work and the community. Students who opt for LCVP must study a continental language and certain other combinations of subjects.

Students complete two Link Modules:

  1. Preparation for the world of work
  2. Enterprise Education

In every other way the LCVP is similiar to the established Leaving Certificate. Most students study seven Leaving Certificate subjects plus the Link Modules.

Main Aims of the Programme:

The provision, through active learning methodologies, activities which develop skills and qualities that prepare students for adult life.

The education of students in the broadest sense, encompassing the academic and the vocational, facilitating experiences whereby they gain an understanding of and appreciation for the world of work and enterprise.

The encouragement of a social and moral awareness that enables students to become respected and valued members of their own communities, allowing them to gain insight into the benefit and merit of their locality, its people and businesses.

Activities Facilitated:

  • My Own Place Investigation
  • Work Placement
  • Career Investigation
  • Visit to an Enterprise
  • Visit by a local Voluntary/ Community Organisation
  • Enterprise Activity – Mini Company/ Fundraiser
  • Mock Interview
  • Learning a New Skill

Each activity covers numerous of the specific learning outcomes desirable in the Links Modules curriculum.

General Overview of Activity:

Each activity is broken up into 3 parts.

  1. Plan the activity – students prepare a plan outlining what they hope to get from the experience and how they intend to carry out the activity successfully.
  2. Experience the activity – students participate actively in the activity playing a major role in its implementation.
  3. Evaluate the activity – students reflect on the activity and make conclusions and recommendations.


5th and 6th Year students are allocated 3 Link Modules periods per week.

This is to include where possible a double class to allow greater leeway for project work, visits out and speakers to the school.
Two of the classes are spent in the computer room so that research, typing of reports, preparation of posters/ questionnaires can take place. Extra computer time is made available to complete portfolio of course work.

One class takes place in the classroom to facilitate the introduction of new concepts and to allow for class discussion. Extra class time is made available leading up to the final written assessment.

The Link Modules do not clash with standard Leaving Certificate subjects so as to allow students the same choices as those taking the standard curriculum.


Students are prepared for the terminal written exam throughout the 2 years of the course. Reference is made and notes are taken on each of the specific learning outcomes that make up the Link Modules Syllabi.

Each learning outcome is discussed during at least one of the core activities and most often span a number of activities.
For example a written question on Health and Safety is well prepared having been explored via:

  • Work Placement
  • Visit to an Enterprise
  • The Enterprise Activity

In addition students are prepared for the written exam through case studies, in video and written form. The case studies, while topics on the exam in their own right, also help revise the learning outcomes for the students and focus them on analysing situations and finding solutions to problems.

Portfolio of Coursework:

Students are required to submit a portfolio of coursework that includes the following items:

Core Items

  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Summary Report
  • Action Plan
  • Career Investigation

Optional Items (select 2 of 4)

  • Diary of Work Experience
  • Enterprise Report
  • Recorded Interview
  • My Own Place Investigation

Students keep the items in a folder of coursework or in a hardback copy. This is regularly inspected/ corrected by the Links Modules teacher and recommendations are made. A number of drafts are submitted before finally producing a word-processed document using the computer.

Each student has his/ her own file space on the school server where work is saved and they are also encouraged to use their own home computers to improve upon their portfolios.


The school has a computer room available to students to assist them with their Link Modules coursework. As part of the course students develop ICT skills, with assistance from the teacher using the following methods:

  • A broadband Internet connection so that students can perform research and make contact through e-mail.
    Word Processing packages so that students can design posters and questionnaires for upcoming events and prepare finished reports on activities for their portfolio of coursework.
  • Spreadsheet packages so that students can prepare accounts for an enterprising or fundraising activity.
    Each student has their own folder on the main computer server and is responsible for its file management. Final portfolio documents are saved in as well as articles on research that wish to be kept for future reference.
  • Students have access to the Qualifax software package that allow them to investigate thoroughly a career of their choice identifying skills and qualities needed, pathways into the career and allowing aptitude tests to assist in selection.

Cross Curricular Links:

Links are established through the identification of common themes across a range of Leaving Certificate subjects and the Link Modules.
During activities reference is made my Links Modules teachers to commonalities between the learning outcomes of the LCVP and aspects of the syllabi in various other subjects.

Students are asked in evaluations of activities to highlight learning that will assist them in their other subjects or to identify where leaving certificate subjects have aided in the running of an activity, paying particular attention to their vocational groupings.

Business Links:

Business and Community Links have been and continue to be established by the school, to supplement Link Modules teaching so that students can:

  • Gain knowledge from enterprising people in the locality and acquire information about the world of work in general.
    Become more aware of the work being done in the area by community organisations.
  • Acquire skills in communication.
  • Become more informed of career opportunities and determine skills and qualities necessary for these jobs.
    These links also enhance the school image and provide real contexts for the Link Modules learning that would be more difficult to establish otherwise.

Links have been established with:

  • Local business so that students can partake in a visit to a local enterprise.
  • Local voluntary organisations so that students can invite speakers to the school to talk about community work.
  • Local entrepreneurs so that workshops on skills development can take place (eg speaker to give techniques and tips on Interview preparation).