Geography in Junior Cycle

Subject Overview

Geography is the study of people and their relationships with their environment It is concerned with helping to develop an understanding of the physical, social and economic processes which shape that environment.
To achieve that understanding, the Geography syllabus aims to introduce young people to a broad body of knowledge and equip them with a wide range of practical skills.


The subject is structured around a number of key geographical concepts which are studied in local, national and international settings.
The syllabus is presented in three sections, each based on a broad theme:

  • The Human Habitat – Processes and Change
  • Population, Settlement Patterns and Urbanisation
  • Patterns in Economic Activity

Assessment is by way of written terminal examination and optional field study.
There are two examination papers, one for Higher level and one for Ordinary level.

Current status

The Junior Certificate Geography syllabus was introduced in 1990 and first examined in 1992. As part of the review of junior cycle, it is one of syllabuses currently undergoing a rebalancing process, in a move towards presenting all junior cycle syllabuses in similar formats.


Geography in Senior Cycle

Subject Overview

Geography is concerned with the study of people and their environment. The subject will help students develop an understanding of the changing relationships between the physical and human worlds. Through their study of geography, students will develop geographical skills that will help them to make informed judgements about issues at local, national and international levels.


Leaving Certificate geography may be studied at Ordinary or Higher level. The course is divided into core, elective and optional units of study. Students are expected to develop important geographical skills as they study these units.
Core Units
1. Patterns and processes in the physical environment
2. Regional geography
3. The Geographical Investigation and skills unit
Elective Units
4. Patterns and processes in economic activities
5. Patterns and processes in the human environment
Optional Units
6. Global interdependence
7. Geoecology
8. Culture and identity
9. The atmosphere-ocean environment
Ordinary level students study all core units and one of the elective units. Higher level students study all core units, one of the elective units and one of the optional units.


Leaving Certificate Geography is assessed at Ordinary and Higher level in ascending order of difficulty. There are two assessment components:

  • Examination paper 80%
  • Report on a Geographical Investigation 20%
Current status

This revised Leaving Certificate Geography syllabus was introduced in 2004.


Junior Certificate Geography Revision Resources

Aswan Dam
Continental Drift
How Plates Move
Pacific Ring of Fire
Structure of the Earth
San Francisco Earthquake

Field Studies

Fifth Year IBM Geography Field Study
An Examination of Glacial Processes ,(Transportation, Erosion and Deposition), and the Landforms Created in Glendalough

PDF Files


Useful Geography Websites

Geological survey of Ireland :


U.S Geological  survey :

Scoilnet :

Climate Change Information :

Standard Grade Geography :

Junior Certificate Geography :

Geography Podcasts

BBC Bitesize podcasts

GSCE Geography Podcasts 
GCSE Revision

AS Geography podcasts


Photo Gallery

Sixth Year River Field Study 2010

Transition Year 2010-2011 Physical Geography Project

Alfred Wegener
Coastal Erosion
Continental Drift
Indonesia Tsunami
Japanese Earthquake
Mid Oceanic Ridges
Mount Saint Helens
Richter Scale 
San Francisco Earthquake 1906
The Burren
The Destruction of Pompeii City
The Features of Glacial Erosion
The Pacific Ring of Fire
The River Nile


1L Physical Geography Internet Project 2011

Continental Drift
Fold Mountains
The Process of Freeze Thaw
Limestone Caves
Richter Scale
The Burren
San Andreas Fault
The River Shannon
Limestone Rock
Crust, Mantle and Core
Flooding Prevention
Mid Ocean Ridges
Mount Saint Helens