Dominican College
Griffith Avenue, Dublin 9

JC - Geography

Junior Cycle Geography Journey

Junior Cycle Geography focuses on providing students with opportunities to develop the knowledge, skills, values and behaviours that allow students to explore their world. The new Junior Cycle Geography specification was introduced into schools in September 2018.

JC Geography Aims:

  1. Enable students to become geographically literate.
  2. Develops knowledge, skills, values and behaviours that allow students to explore the physical world, human activities, and how we interact with our world.
  3. Stimulates curiosity, creating opportunities for students to read, analyse, synthesise and communicate about their immediate environment and the wider world.

The skills developed through the subject are transferable and will benefit students in study and life. Geography encourages structured inquiry: this critical thinking involves students asking questions, gathering data, evaluating and interpreting, and presenting information. It encourages collaboration and communication with their peers and experts in other fields.

Learning Outcomes

The learning to be experienced by students in Junior Cycle Geography is described in learning outcomes. These are statements that describe the knowledge, understanding, skills and values students should be able to demonstrate after their three years of Junior Cycle. There are 28 learning outcomes across the three strands and teachers select learning outcomes from across the strands in first, second and third year.

Structure of the Specification

Geoliteracy

The specification is informed by the concept of Geoliteracy. This refers to students’ ability to develop far-reaching understandings through geographical thinking and reasoning. The core components of Geoliteracy are the three I’s:

  • Interactions
  • Interconnections
  • Implications

Strand 1: Exploring the Physical World

This strand focuses on facilitating students’ exploration of how the physical world is formed and changed. Students develop knowledge and skills to understand and explain the physical world. Students engage and interact with topics related to physical geography and explore their interrelationships and any implications those topics might have on students’ lives. They apply their knowledge and skills to explain spatial characteristics and the formation of phenomena in the physical world.

Strand 2: Exploring How We Interact with the Physical World

This strand focuses on facilitating students’ understanding of how people interact with the physical world and the implications this might have for their lives. Students explore how we depend on, adapt, and change the physical world. Students apply their knowledge and skills to explain how we interact with our physical world for economic purposes, as well as how we adapt to physical phenomena.

Strand 3: Exploring People, Place and Change

This strand focuses on students exploring people, place and change. Students engage with topics related to globalisation, development, population and interdependence. Students interact with topics while exploring interrelationships and the implications those topics might have for their lives. They apply their knowledge and skills to explain settlement patterns, urbanisation, demographics, and human development.

Elements

The elements inform how students will experience the learning outcomes within the strands. Students will approach the learning outcomes through the lens of each of the elements.

  • Processes, patterns, systems and scale
  • Geographical skills
  • Sustainability

Assessment and the learning journey

CBA 1: Geography in the News

Structured inquiry through a response to a recent geographical event(s)

Format: Report that may be presented in a variety of formats

Student preparation: At the end of a three-week period students will report on their inquiry, based on a recent media source, relating to a geographical event

Completion of assessment: Term two in 2nd year

CBA 2: My Geography

Structured inquiry into a geographical aspect(s) in a local area.

Format: Report that may be presented in a variety of formats

Student preparation: Students will, over a three-week period, investigate geographical aspects in a local area.

Completion of assessment: Term one in 3rd year

After completion of each CBA, a Subject Learning and Assessment Review (SLAR) meeting takes place providing teachers with the opportunity to share samples of their assessment of student work and build a common understanding about the quality of student learning.

Assessment Task

On completion of the second Classroom-Based Assessment, students will undertake an Assessment Task. It will be marked by the State Examinations Commission and will be allocated 10% of the marks used to determine the final examination grade awarded by the SEC.


Final Examination

There will be one examination paper at a common level, set and marked by the State Examinations Commission (SEC). The examination will be no longer than two hours in duration and will take place in June of third year. In any year, the learning outcomes to be assessed will constitute a sample of the relevant outcomes from the tables of learning outcomes.



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