Transition Year is a one-year, school-based programme between Junior Cycle and Senior Cycle. It is designed to act as a bridge between the two by facilitating the smooth transition from the more dependent learning of the Junior Cycle to the more independent self-directed learning required for the Senior Cycle.
The Transition Year offers students an opportunity:
• To engage in independent, self-directed learning
• To develop general, technical and academic skills
• To mature and develop without the pressure of an examination.
Students get the opportunity to sample a wide range of subject areas and can make more informed choices about the kind of Leaving Certificate programme they want to follow after the Transition Year.
Transition Year is optional.
There is no end-of-year state examination in the Transition Year - a decision made by the Department of Education and Science to ensure that the focus of the year was learning led rather than exam driven: The activity-based learning ethos of the year requires each school to engage in school-based assessment, which helps students to identify their own strengths and weaknesses, as well as develop the skills of self-assessment and reflection. Assessment is ongoing, with portfolio assessment, project work, and exhibitions of students' work. Oral, aural, practical and written activities all form part of this assessment process. Since 2000, the Department of Education and Science has issued an official Transition Year Certificate to participants in addition to schools providing their own school-based certification.