Tuesday 20 August 2019

Leaving Cert: 'Very fair' German paper but some students may have found it challenging

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Fiona Dillon

Fiona Dillon

Leaving Cert students would have found it challenging to complete the German Higher level paper in time this morning, but the questions were considered “fair”.

Orla Ni Shuilleabhain, a German teacher at The Institute of Education in Dublin said it was a “relevant paper that was accessible to all levels.”

“As in previous years, there was no scope for rote learning in any way, although some topics reflected themes the students would have covered for their oral exam,” said Ms Ni Shuilleabhain.

The first comprehension question dealt with a chance meeting and the development of the relationship between two characters. It was very accessible, but the questions in German would have been demanding for the weaker student, according to the teacher.

“In the grammar section, students had to label tenses. While challenging in parts, it was clear to understand,” she said.

“The second comprehension was very topical, and focused on a German translator married to an Irish man and her work as an interpreter in the European parliament. The questions were fair but students would need to have made sure they gave enough detail in their answers,” she said.

Meanwhile, when it came to section two of the paper, dealing with the written part, she felt it was “very fair” and gave students good scope to use their oral material.

“Topical themes such as energy strategies for the future and a meeting of young people in Strasbourg appeared here,” said  Ms Ni Shuilleabhain.

In the letter, the topics that came up included qualities of a good teacher and the Irish language. This gave decent scope to students.

In relation to the question on the essay, she said that: “Once again the essay was very topical and focused on themes including how digital technology has changed our lives, the use of smart phones while driving and how you can learn a language on a smart phone.”

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