Leaving Certificate 2021 and accredited grades
- Leaving Certificate written exams
- How are accredited grades worked out?
- Leaving Certificate results
- How to appeal your results
- Further information
If you were a Leaving Certificate student in 2021, you could choose to sit the written exam in June 2021 or get an accredited grade from the State Examination Commission (SEC) or both.
If you opted for both the written exam and an accredited grade in a subject, you will have your best grade recorded in your Leaving Certificate results.
The Leaving Certificate results issued on the Candidate Self Service Portal - see ‘Leaving Certificate results’ below.
The Department of Education has information about Leaving Certificate 2021.
Leaving Certificate written exams
The Leaving Certificate written exams ran from 9 June to 29 June 2021.
The oral and coursework components of the exams were not included in the accredited grade process.
You can read about changes made to assessment arrangements for Leaving Certificate 2021 examinations to take account of the disrupted learning experienced by students during school closures in 2020 and 2021.
How are accredited grades worked out?
An accredited grade is based on an estimated mark you would get in that subject in the Leaving Certificate exam. In 2020, the term calculated grade was used.
SEC accredited grades are offered to students taking the following Leaving Certificate programmes:
- Leaving Certificate - for your subjects
- Leaving Certificate Applied (LCA) - for your outstanding assessments, including your subjects, vocational specialisms and tasks due to be completed in the current LCA session.
Leaving Certificate Vocational Programme (LCVP) - for your LCVP Link Modules.
There are a number of steps involved to an accredited grade:
Step 1: Estimated mark by your teacher
Your teacher gives you an estimate of the mark based on your likely performance if you were to sit the 2021 Leaving Certificate exam.
Your teacher uses records of your performance and progress to get your estimated percentage mark, for example: classwork and homework, class assessments and your coursework over the 2 years of the Leaving Certificate cycle.
Step 2: In-school alignment by subject teachers in your school
Subject teachers in your school then review the estimated percentage marks of students in the school. Your teacher finalises their estimated percentage marks following this alignment process.
If your school has only one teacher of a subject, that teacher will conduct the in-school alignment process with the deputy principal of your school or with another teacher of the same subject in your school who does not have a Leaving Certificate class in 2021. Your principal must agree to the arrangement.
Step 3: Oversight of marks by the school principal
The school principal reviews the estimated percentage marks and assures themself that the process has been fair.
Step 4: National standardisation
Your school principal submits the estimated marks for national standardisation by 3 June 2021.
After the standardisation process, the marks are converted into SEC accredited grades.
You can read a guide to State examinations and accredited grades for Leaving Certificate students 2021 (pdf) and a guide to State examinations and accredited grades for Leaving Certificate Applied students 2021 (pdf) for more detailed information.
You can read guides for schools on how to provide estimated percentage marks on gov.ie.
Leaving Certificate results
The Leaving Certificate results issued on the Candidate Self Service Portal (CSSP) in September 2021.
If you opted for both the written exam and an accredited grade in a subject, you had your best grade recorded in your Leaving Certificate results.
Your results were provided directly to the CAO to process your application for entry to higher education. First round CAO offers for colleges and universities issued on 7 September 2021.
From 7 September, you could access details of the component marks for the written exams and the estimated percentage mark for accredited grades on the CCSP. You could also apply to view scripts for written exams in person in your school.
Applications to view scripts closed on 8 September 2021.
The Department has published information for Leaving Certificate 2021 students.
You can read more in the Candidate Information Guide to Results and Appeals for Leaving Certificate 2021.
How to appeal your results
If you are not satisfied with the marks you get in one or more subjects of your written Leaving Certificate exam, you can appeal those results to the State Examinations Commission (SEC).
Your script will be sent to an appeal examiner for re-marking. You can find out more about appealing the Leaving Certificate written exam result.
SEC accredited grade
If you appealed an accredited grade, the appeal would only check that your school data was correctly transferred to the SEC and that it was correctly processed by the SEC. If you were still unhappy at the end of this process, you could get verification of the SEC’s processes by independent appeal scrutineers.
Under the accredited grades system, the estimated percentage mark provided by the teacher could not be reviewed.
Students who considered that their case had not been processed correctly after the appeals process could make a complaint to the Ombudsman or, in the case of students under 18 years of age, the Ombudsman for Children.
You can find out more in A Guide to State Examinations and Accredited Grades for Leaving Certificate 2021. You can read key dates and information for Leaving Certificate 2021(pdf).
The Citizens Information Board has published a booklet called Information for school leavers (pdf) that covers many of the practical questions about education and employment that you may have.