Careers rarely develop the way we plan them. Our career path often takes many twists and turns, with particular events, choices and people influencing our direction.
We asked Tom Tooher from Defence Forces to give some advice for people considering this job:
Look up the Defence Forces website at www.military.ie and talk to serving personnel. If its possible try to visit a barracks.
What are your interests?
The Linguistic's interests are usually focused on ideas and information exchange. They tend to like reading a lot, and enjoy discussion about what has been said. Some will want to write about their own ideas and may follow a path towards journalism, story writing or editing. Others will develop skills in other languages, perhaps finding work as a translator or interpreter. Most Linguistic types will enjoy the opportunity to teach or instruct people in a topic they are interested in.
Subject Choice for Leaving Cert...
These courses enable learners to gain recognition for the achievement of considerable knowledge in a range of subject areas, as for example in the Leaving Certificate and one-year Post Leaving Certificate courses.
Courses may be academic or practical in focus, and awards that are recognised by the National Framework of Qualifications may lead to progression opportunities higher up in the framework.
Employment Opportunities The majority of people with certificates at this level are well prepared for occupations that involve using their knowledge and skills to help others. Examples include office secretary, customer service representatives, special needs assistant, retail salespersons and childcare workers.
Listed below are the percentage distributions of marks from the 4354 students who sat the Ordinary Level Business exam in 2018.
Leaving Certificate business creates an awareness of the importance of business activity and develops a positive and ethical attitude towards enterprise. The learning experiences in business develop students’ critical thinking, creative and organisational skills while enhancing literacy and numeracy skills using real-life examples. Business provides students with a learning foundation for a wide range of careers in business, marketing, law, enterprise and management.
Why Study this?
Why Study Business
Business is not specifically required for entry into any third level course but it would certainly be beneficial for candidates who might be interested in courses or careers in the area of finance, enterprise, law and communications.
What kind of student would Business suit?
Business will suit a candidate who is interested in current affairs and listens to the news, reads the papers and stays alert to what is happening in the general business world. While there is a fair share of learning of key concepts the ability to apply these concepts in everyday life will be the difference between passing the subject and getting a good mark.
While the business concepts are easy to understand, it will be important to show that you can apply the concept to everyday business life.
This subject suits someone who has an organised mind and likes to answer questions in bullet points, rather than in long essay format.
This subject would be useful to anyone thinking of starting his or her own business in the future.
The subject is suited to students who are willing to work hard and caters for all abilities.
It is not necessary for students to have studied Junior Certificate Business Studies, but this would be a help.
Not necessary to write long essays, answers are presented in bullet points.
Course content is factual and requires a lot of learning, containing only a few mathematical elements.
Ideally, students would have an interest in business and current affairs and would have an up to date knowledge of economic environment.
An organised and consistent attitude to homework and study would be essential in this subject.
Videos & Interviews
Read what others say about their Leaving Cert. Subject Choices...
Electronic Engineer - Shane Callanan
When in I was in school I didn’t really have a definite career plan. However I did prefer the Science subjects in general over languages or Business type subjects. Along with the obligatory subjects, I continued with Physics, Chemistry and Honours Maths for my leaving certificate, not so much as a conscious career choice but because I liked them. However as it turned out these all helped me during my course, and they tied in with my career choice.
In school I took English, Irish, Maths, French, Biology, Economics and Business. The fact that I enjoyed economics in school led me to the choice of my degree.
Luckily by taking what started out as a general degree I was able to figure out that what I liked about economics was being able to pose questions and look for solutions; the critical thinking component, rather than the content was actually the part that appealed most to me.
Through exposure to a variety of subjects in my first year in college I was in a much better position to chose the subjects that I wanted to specialise in.
Choosing to specialise in business and sociology worked well for me; the business component gave me a marketable knowledge base and skill set, while the sociology component encouraged me to think critically and introduced me to research skills.
I wouldn't do anything differently. It was great to be in a course where the classes got smaller as I progressed through, so I got a lot of guidance as I stumbled forward!
Choosing a specialised degree wouldn't have been a good choice for me at the time - I'm still amazed when I think of my friends who knew exactly what they wanted to do as they left school.
The biggest thing I learnt through my degree was that I had developed a skill set that I could use in a variety of ways. Having a degree in a specific area doesn't limit you to that for life!
In school we had to choose our Leaving Cert subjects just before the Junior Cert. At this stage I had no idea what I wanted to do as a profession but I knew I wanted to go to College.
In order to keep my options open I chose a mix of subjects to include one language, one science subject and one business subject. In addition to the obligatory English, Irish & Maths I therefore studied French, Biology, Geography & Accounting. I chose these particular subjects as I had an interest in them at Junior Cert level.
I suppose Biology was the most relevant of my subjects when I started college as there was some overlap with Anatomy and Physiology. We also studied research and statistics in college which were Maths related.
I did the following subjects for my Leaving Cert: Irish, English, Maths, French, Physics, Chemistry, Accounting and Applied Maths.
When choosing my subjects in 5th year in School I deliberately ensured that I did at least one business and one science subject because this gave me more flexibility in my choice of courses. I would recommend this strategy - particularly for those who aren't sure what they wish to study in college.
Although school subjects don't have a huge relevance in my career I think some of the business oriented subjects (accounts etc...) can be very useful for book keeping and the business management side of things. Fitness is also very important so sports and physical ED would also be useful.
In addition to the three core subjects, I studied French, Business Studies, Home Economics and Accounting for my Leaving Cert. In fourth year in school we completed semesters on a variety of Leaving Cert. subjects. I chose to study business and accounting as I found these subjects interesting and had an aptitude for them.
Agricultural Science - I really enjoyed it and it gave me a good understanding of the basics in agriculture. Technical Drawing and Construction Studies - I enjoyed the hands on building as well as the planning and design aspect which has assisted me in planning and building my farm yard from the parlour, sheds, workshops and even my new house.
If I could go back in time I think I would of taken Business Studies to give me a better grasp of the financial aspects that are involve in my farming business.
For my Leaving Cert. I took Maths - higher, Applied Maths - higher, Physics - higher, Chemistry - higher, Music - higher, English - higher, German - higher, Irish - ordinary As you can see my abilities and interests were more in the maths+science sphere than anything else.
I was very lucky that at the time Mt. Temple had very capable maths+science teachers, which certainly made things easier for me. To be honest, in school I didn't really think about 3rd level or careers or anything until I was in 6th year (by which stage I'd already picked my subjects). I just picked the subjects I enjoyed and felt I had a natural knack for.
For the career I'm in now I don't think I could have picked better school subjects. It might have helped me to know a bit more about business-related subjects, but I had no interest in accountancy or commerce at the time.
I am considering taking an evening course in the legal+financial aspects to running a business to make up for this. However, as a teenager I think I was better off studying subjects that I had a genuine interest in, otherwise I would have found it very hard to motivate myself to study.
This subject teaches the skills and knowledge needed to understand how business works.
This is a practical course that introduces students to the world of business in a straightforward and logical way. It aims to create an awareness of the importance of business activity and to develop a positive and ethical attitude towards it. The importance of people in business is highlighted.
The course sets out to illustrate the process of setting up a business and developing a new product or service. It emphasises the importance of good management and deals with skills and activities necessary for good management practice. It also deals with the impact of technology, foreign trade, global firms and competition and with business structures and the national economy.
Business requires students to stay alert and to be aware of current related business media (e.g. newspapers, TV, radio). The course is theory based and therefore requires a lot of learning.
Leaving cert business has been on offer for many years now, so there are lots of past papers to help the student when revising.
This subject is concerned with understanding the environment in which business operates in Ireland and in the wider world.
It also involves equipping the students with a positive view of enterprise and its applications in the business environment, in both the public and private sectors.
There are 7 core units covering the following topics: Introduction to people in business; Enterprise; Managing 1 & 2; Business in action; Domestic Environment and International Environment.
There is a common syllabus covering Higher and Ordinary level, which will fulfil the aims and objectives of the course.
A flexibility of design that caters for present day Irish business education and yet is capable of adaptation to future developments in a structured and efficient way.
It assists students to develop their education for adult and working life including the creation of positive attitudes towards self-employment.
From time to time there may be field trips or guest speakers where the course allows. These are not a compulsory part of the course and are organised at the teachers’ discretion.
Exam Structure - Higher & Ordinary Level
Higher Level – 1 x 3 hour paper (400 marks); 3 sections.
Section 1 – Short questions (8/10) 80 marks.
Section 2 – Applied Business Question – 80 marks (compulsory).
Section 3 – Long Questions (60 marks per question (4/7))
Ordinary Level – 1 x 2.5 hour paper (400 marks); 2 sections.
Section 1 – Short Question (10/15) 100 marks.
Section 2 – Long Questions (75 marks per question (4/8)).
Business is useful for careers in a wide range of areas including Banking, Finnace, Administration, Law, Insurance, Management and Marketing among others.