There wasn’t much change in the numbers getting As on the higher level ag science paper this year compared to last year or the year before, with 10.3% of students achieving an A grade compared to 11.3% last year and 10.9% the year before.
There were fewer As achieved on the ordinary level paper this year compared to previous years. Just 0.1% of candidates achieved an A grade on the ordinary level paper this year compared to 0.3% in 2015 and 0.6% in 2016.
Slightly fewer failed the higher level paper this year at 6.7% compared to other years; 8.1% in 2015 and 7.8% in 2014.
Failure rate up at ordinary level
After dropping to 8.1% last year (2015), the failure rate on the ordinary level ag science paper this year was up significantly to 18.1%, which is just shy of what it was in 2014 (18.7%).
Some 7,894 students took the ag science paper this year – this figure is broadly similar to the numbers who sat the paper both last year and the year before.
In ag economics, 7.7% of students got an A on the higher level paper this year, which is the exact same as the numbers who achieved the same grade in 2014. 10.6% achieved an A grade in the subject last year. Nobody failed the higher level paper last year whereas 5.8% did this year and 2.6% failed in 2014.
None of the 15 students who sat the ordinary level ag economics paper this year got an A, but no one failed the ordinary level paper either.
104 students sat the higher level paper this year.
No student hit the elusive nine A1s mark in the Leaving Cert this year (one did last year). Six candidates received eight A1s this year compared to eight last year (although that figure is actually nine when you count the student who received nine A1s!)
What is important is to celebrate what you have achieved
Registrar of Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT) Dr Derek O’Byrne has some advice for students.
“The most important thing to remember at this time is to maintain perspective. Too much discussion is on high point programmes and points increases for various courses whereas just 3% of Leaving Cert students get 550 points and upwards. Just over a third will get 400 points. The mid-point is 350 points, meaning that half of students get less than 350 points. What is important therefore is to celebrate what you have achieved.”
He notes that students should also be aware that the best predictor of success “is doing what you like, and so it’s imperative that the college place you accept, is one you will enjoy.”
55,708 students in total sat the Leaving Cert this year. 23 of those sat the exam in Libya.