The study of modern foreign languages (Spanish) enables students to build on their language learning in English and Irish in primary school and further develops their skills in and enjoyment of using languages. Language learning is accessible to all students and contributes to their cognitive, personal and social growth by enhancing their communicative and thinking skills, as well as their participation in a global society. Being able to communicate in the mother tongue and in foreign languages are also among the eight key competences for lifelong learning identified by the European Union and European Council in 2006.
There are two Classroom-Based Assessments in Modern Foreign Languages. They are assessed at a common level. They relate to specific learning outcomes and are scheduled to be undertaken by students in a defined time period within class contact time to a national timetable (as advised by the NCCA) in the school calendar. Following the second of these assessments, students will complete an Assessment Task which is marked by the State Examinations Commission as part of the state-certified examination in Modern Foreign Languages and is worth 10% of their overall grade.
Spanish follows a common syllabus framework for the teaching and examining of modern languages in the Leaving Certificate. The syllabus aims to develop learners’ communicative skills in Spanish, to develop their strategies for effective language learning and raise their awareness of cultural, social, and political diversity. Assessment is by means of a written examination, and an aural and oral examination at two levels, Ordinary level and Higher level.