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Junior Cycle Science

Junior Cycle Science is the latest specification to be developed by the NCCA as part of the developments at junior cycle. It is due to be introduced in schools from September, 2015 and, consequently, the specification is in the final stages of preparation.

NCCA has published and begun consulting on the draft specification for Science, seeking views from a wide range of interests. The consultation on the specification for Junior Cycle Science will focus, for the most part, on the curriculum specification. Specifically, it will seek feedback on the draft introduction, rationale, aim, course overview, strands and learning outcomes for Junior Cycle Science.

You will find additional information on the development of the specification, including a background paper issued prior to the commencement of the NCCA Development Group’s work on the junior cycle website and the Framework for Junior Cycle is also available online.

On Tuesday October 14th, as part of the consultation, a conference on Junior Cycle Science took place in the Printworks Conference Centre, Dublin Castle. It gave participants from a wide variety of stakeholders in education an opportunity to comment on the specification and discuss the future development of science education.
The programme on the day consisted of keynote contributions followed by focus group sessions which engaged with and seeked feedback on the contents of the draft specification. 

Dr. Shane Bergin, School of Physics Trinity College Dublin spoke at the conference. The audience reacted very warmly to the work Dr. Bergin is undertaking here in Trinity College (in collaboration with Prof. Murphy from the School of Education) on informal learning (DARTofPhysics) and bringing cooperative & problem-based learning to undergrad physics labs. Regarding the work they do in the physics undergraduate teaching lab, some remarked that they are less constrained in what we teach at third level, that our findings should be held up as an example of how small reforms can lead to significant, and positive, change when discussing such matters with second-level educators.

Last updated 16 October 2014