St. Brendan's Community School

Leaving Certificate Applied (LCA)

LCA Behaviour Contract

What is the Leaving Cert Applied?

The Leaving Certificate Applied is a distinct, self-contained two-year Leaving Certificate programme aimed at preparing students for adult and working life. The programme sets out to recognise the talents of all students and to provide opportunities for developing personal responsibility, self-esteem and self-knowledge. The programme focuses on the talents of each student and helps students apply what they learn to the real world. The two-year programme consists of four half-year blocks called sessions. Achievements are credited in each session.

Courses are offered in three main areas:

  • Vocational preparation, involving work experience, enterprise and communication
  • General education, offering life-skills, the arts, social education, leisure and language
  • Vocational education.

Course Structure

Each course consists of a number of modules. Each module takes place over half a year. There is also a wide range of practical courses, called vocational specialisms, from which the student can choose.

Assessment and Examinations

Assessment is continuous throughout the course and there is a final examination. Assessment takes place on the completion of modules and practical activities that allow the student to integrate the learning from different courses.

The final examination must be taken in the following areas:

  • English and Communication
  • Mathematical Applications
  • Social Education
  • Two vocational specialisms
  • Language

There are written and oral examinations in all languages. There are practical examinations in the vocational specialisms. The written examinations take place in June, at the same time as the examinations for the established Leaving Certificate.

The Certificate Awarded

Students who successfully complete the programme are awarded a Leaving Certificate from the Department of Education and Skills. The certificate is awarded at three levels:


Marks and Credits Required


60-69% (120-139 credits)


70-84% (140-169 credits)


85-100% (170-200 credits)

Candidates who get less than 60% (120 credits) or do not complete the course, are awarded a record of experience. A pass in the Leaving Certificate Applied is the equivalent of 6 Grade Ds at Ordinary Level in the established Leaving Certificate.

Eligibility for further education and third-level courses

A student who has been awarded the Leaving Certificate Applied can go on to a very wide range of Post-Leaving Certificate Courses (PLC). These are available in local post-primary schools and colleges. The PLC courses can lead on to a National Certificate Level 2 (FETAC Level 2). These are generally one-year full-time courses. There are also some part-time courses that can be taken over a longer period. There are more than 50 awards available in five broad areas - Art/Design, Business, Science, Services/Leisure and Communications/Media studies.

Session Credit Results


Session 1

Session 2

Session 3

Session 4

English & Communications

Mathematical Applications

Gaeilge and Modern Language

Social Education


Leisure & Recreation

Construction & Graphics


Hotel, Catering & Tourism

Information & Communications Technology

Arts – Visual

Craft & Design

Practical Achievement Task

Personal Reflection Task


Students with the Leaving Certificate Applied cannot gain direct entry through the Central Applications Office (CAO) system to the Universities or Colleges of Technology. However, those who get a Further Education and Training Awards (FETAC) Level 2 award can be eligible for some third-level courses in the Institutes of Technology and through these to some degree programmes. Students cannot go directly to nursing but may be eligible to apply as a mature student with certain FETAC qualifications or relevant experience. Students with the Leaving Certificate Applied can also go on to Solas programmes. Many students go directly to employment.

When are LCA Student Tasks completed?

Each LCA student must complete seven Student Tasks in the following order:

Year One - Session 1 (September – January Year 1)

Year One - Session 2 (February – June Year 1)

Year One - Personal Reflection Task

One task from

n General Education Task

(originating in Arts Education, Leisure & Recreation, Languages or Social Education)

n Assessment date end of January.

Two tasks from

n Vocational Preparation Task

(originating in either Vocational Preparation & Guidance or English & Communications)

n Vocational Education (Specialism) Task Originating in one Vocational Specialism

n Assessment of both tasks beginning May.

Year 1 Statement

n Recorded & developed through Year 1

n Year 1 Statement prepared, completed and stored in May.

Year Two - Session 3 (September – January Year 2)

Year Two - Session 4 (Feb to June Year 2)

Three tasks from

n Vocational Education (Specialism) Task

(originating in the second Vocational Specialism)

n Contemporary Issue Task

(Anchored in Social Education)

n Practical Achievement Task

o Generally, out-of-school/centre

o External Verifier

o DES Logbook

o Assessment of 3 Tasks end of January

Year Two - Personal Reflection Task

Year 1 Statement stored from Year 1

Year 2 Statement prepared and completed in May

Both statements forwarded to SEC in special

envelope in May.

May 27
House Exams

Comhghairdeas mór le Maisie Murdock, Tess Liffey, Páidí Yallop, Mollie King, Faye Collins, Ross Curley, agus

Cappaneale, Birr, Co. Offaly
057 912 0510
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