Environmental and Social Studies (ESS) is a student- centred syllabus drawing together the disciplines History, Geography and Civics. It incorporates the study of environmental and social issues that helps students to reflect on the world in which they live and to develop the skills and competencies required for active participation in society.

The aims of ESS are:

  • To develop an understanding of oneself as an individual, as a member of a local, national and European community and of the interdependence of all people.
  • To develop a respect for the local, national and global environment.
  • To develop an understanding of the major factors, events and people who have shaped and are currently shaping the world in which we live.
  • To develop an awareness of the contrasting opportunities and constraints facing people living in different places and times under different physical and human conditions.
  • To encourage the development of independent thinking through a variety of activities and experiential learning, using a variety of media to express and communicate what is learned.

In Junior Certificate ESS is examined in two ways:

  • Students do two projects: an individual historical research project and a geographical field study which is done with the whole class. The marks from both of these projects go towards your final grade.
  • There will also be a written exam with questions about graphs, maps, old photographs, cartoons, stories from the past and other documents.  The exam can be taken at Higher or at Ordinary level.

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