Karol Sadleir
Karol Sadleir
Deputy Director

Welcome to the Assessment section of the Junior Cycle for Teachers (JCT) website.

This section will provide information and updates on junior cycle assessment.
So what is the purpose of assessment at this stage of our students’ education? Essentially, assessment should support learning. We are moving away from an emphasis on the final exam towards a system that hopes to capture and reward the multifaceted skills, knowledge and understandings of our students. Many of these skills are best illustrated over time and cannot all be captured in a pen and paper timed exam. Classroom-Based Assessment offers students the opportunity to showcase these talents and skills in a supportive and encouraging way.
Assessment at junior cycle places the students at the centre of the learning. It endeavours to provide students with the knowledge of where they are in their learning, where to go next and how to get there. This ongoing assessment (both formative* and summative*) is a process that involves teachers and students working together, checking in on the learning at regular intervals, gathering evidence on where the students’ understanding is at and discussing the best way to proceed in order to deepen the learning. Evidence of learning can be gleaned through observation, questioning, classroom talk, projects, tests etc.

For Support for Junior Cycle Assessment and Information for Parents see below:

If you require any further information, please contact your relevant Regional Leader or provide detail on the
JCT Support Enquiry Form
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Support for Junior Cycle Assessment:

The NCCA has published an assessment toolkit which provides detailed guidance for teachers on how the new assessment system will support learning and teaching. On completion, it will include a range of supports, advice, guidelines and exemplification that will enable schools and teachers to engage with all aspects of assessment in an informed way, with confidence and clarity.

Further support can be accessed in our dedicated assessment section under, Subjects, Short Courses, Level 2 Learning Programmes, and Whole School on this website. These will be updated and amended regularly.

Your school can register for whole school support by contacting Monaghan Education Centre Phone 047 74008.

Useful links:

Click here for assessment information and updates from the NCCA

*formative assessment: the goal of formative assessment is to gather feedback that can be used by the teacher and the students to guide improvements in the ongoing teaching and learning.

*summative assessment: the goal of summative assessment is to measure the level of success or proficiency that has been obtained at the end of a unit of work or course, by comparing it to success criteria or features of quality. However, it is important to see how both forms of assessment can be complementary and overlapping activities. (NCCA)

Professor Paul Black on Assessment

This collection of short videos show Professor Paul Black exploring the teacher’s role in formative and summative assessment in learning and teaching. We would like to thank our colleagues in Education Scotland for giving us permission to use these videos.

Paul Black on formal written tests

Using feedback to promote dialogue in the classroom

Is marking a productive form of feedback?

The benefits of group work and peer assessment

Integrating assessment with pedagogy

Steps to develop teachers’ summative assessment

Teacher as primary assessor

Validity of assessment

Developing confidence in assessment skill

Pedagogy and the quality of summative assessment