Saturday 20 January 2018

Leaving Cert Agricultural Science: Advantage for biology students but overall a fair paper

Katherine Donnelly

Katherine Donnelly

Biology students would have had a definite advantage in tackling the highest-scoring question on today’s Leaving Certificate Agricultural Science Higher Level paper.

Question 1 was largely biology based, more so than usual, according to Louise O’Hora of St Louis Community School, Kiltimagh, Co Mayo. The question is worth 60 marks compared with 48 for all others.

Ms O’Hora said overall it was a fair paper, covering the main topics on the course, such as dairy , sheep and beef. Unusually, there were full questions on each of these topics rather than featuring as parts of questions.

However, she said in the question on crops, the emphasis on wheat would been a challenge for most candidates.

Ms O’Hora also said the terminology in Question 7 (b) relating to the cross in genetics, would have deviated from past papers.

Students may have been surprised at the choice of at least one experiment in Section 4, on plant cells, which is an unusual choice for a higher level paper.

At ordinary level, Ms O’Hora described the short questions as “straightforward and very well structured for ordinary level students.

There was a good variety of long questions, and in animal physiology students would have liked the one on the ruminant stomach, Ms O’Hora said they preferred that topic than, for instance, the heart.

* Don’t miss tomorrow’s print edition of the Irish Independent for exclusive in-depth analysis of today’s Leaving Cert and Junior Cert papers

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