Eyes Down, Turn Over Your Papers

by Seamus Whelehan


Almost 121,500 student’s began their Leaving and Junior Certificate examinations on Wednesday morning last 7 June, across 5,170 centres nationwide.
Almost 6,500 students are sitting their leaving cert across Cork County with 211 opting for the leaving cert applied. Nearly 7,000 are sitting their Junior certificate.
In Carrignafoy Community College Cobh, a third of students are expected to sit higher level papers which appears to be the trend nationally.
As the pupils at East Cork Schools Colaiste Muire Cobh, St Aloysius Carrigtwohill, Pobailscoil Na Trionoide Youghal, St. Mary’s Highschool ,Midleton College, CBS Secondary and St Colman’s Community College Midleton began their exams, Minister for education Richard Bruton TD, wished them well, and hinted at the stress felt during exam times, saying the key is keeping calm.
“While these exams are important, they are just one pathway in education. A range of opportunities now exist which will help students to fulfil their ambitions.”He said.
Just over 60,000 students will take the Junior Certificate, with almost 56,000 sitting the leaving certificate.
The first papers on the leaving certificate were English paper one in the morning, with Home Economics in the afternoon.
The Junior Certificate students however, faced a morning of English with civic, Social and Political education exam papers in the afternoon.
For the fifth year in a row there is a record number taking higher maths. Many attributing the increase to extra CAO points for a D grade or higher in honours papers and also the impact of project maths.
ASTI President Ed Byrne urged students to “remain calm and positive” over the coming days and weeks.
While stress is normal during the exam period it's important to keep things in perspective, "No one exam is going to make or break you as a person. Exams are a part of life, but they are not everything." he said.
Experts advised to avoid post exam analysis and keep looking ahead to the next exam. “Revision sessions of about 30 to 40 minutes are far better than cramming the night before an exam. Take plenty of breaks and make sure to build in time to organise yourself for the following day. Being organised is another way of minimising stress on exam days” he added.