Home Economics- Scientific & Social

What is the subject about? 

Leaving Certificate Home Economics provides students with knowledge, understanding, skills and attitudes necessary for managing their own lives. It is an applied subject that combines theory with practice in order to develop understanding and solve life problems. It will enable students to take control of their own lives at present and in the future, whether that be in the home, in further education, in the world of work, or other life situations. 

The subject has 3 core areas of study along with one elective chosen by the School. Core area 1 is Food studies. It is the largest area in the course and consists of study in topics such as Nutrition, Dietary needs and guidelines, food commodities, food processing, food preservation and microbiology. Core area 2 is resource management and consumer studies. This area explores household finances (budgeting, savings schemes, mortgages etc.), household technology, consumer studies and family resource management. Core area 3 is Social studies. This area explores family law in Ireland in relation to marriage, divorce, domestic violence and the rights of a child. In Clonturk Community College we chose to complete the social studies elective area which consists of studies in education, work and poverty in Ireland. 

How is the subject assessed? 

I. Written Examination (80%) 

The written examination takes place in June, it is a 2-and-a-half-hour examination with 3 sections. Section A consists of short questions from all 3 core areas where the students are required to answer 10 questions from 12. Section B consist of 5 long questions from all 3 core areas, Q1 is a compulsory long question and students have a choice to answer 2 more questions out of the remaining 4. Section C consists of questions based on the social studies elective where students must answer 2 out of 3 long questions. 

II. Food Studies Coursework Journal (2o%) 

A big difference between Junior Cycle and Leaving Certificate Home Economics is that there is no marked cookery exam and there is also no textiles project.

Throughout 5th year students will complete written coursework journals which count for 20% of their overall grade. 4 briefs are assigned by the State Examinations Commission at the beginning of 5th year. Students will research each brief and complete the practical component of the assignment. Students will then complete a written detailed account of their research, practical implementation and evaluation of the task completed. The assignment briefs are based around specific nutritional diets, cooking processes, food technology, properties of food and sensory analysis testing. Assignments are marked at a common level and are completed under supervision of a teacher. The written journals are posted to the State Examinations Commission in late October of 6th year for correcting. 

Additional Comments 

– It is recommended that a student taking Leaving Certificate Home Economics has an interest in food studies, social studies and general health. 

– It would be desirable that students completed Home Economics for Junior Cycle but it is not compulsory. 

– There is a partial overlap between Home Economics and the Biology course in relation to food science and microbiology. If students are choosing Home Economics and trying to decide on a Science subject Biology is advised. 

– Leaving Certificate Home Economics is far more scientific than the Junior Cycle course so it is advised that students are interested or have an aptitude for scientific theory. 


Career Opportunities 

– Dietetics 

– Chef work 

– Nutritionist 

– Home Economics Secondary School Teacher 

– Financial Advisor 

– Social Worker 

– Food Business Management 

– Food Scientist 

– Work in the hospitality sector (Waiter, Event Planner, Housekeeper etc.)