What is Transition Year?
Transition Year (TY) is a one-year education programme available to all students who have completed their Junior Cycle education. It is not compulsory to do TY in our school. However, our experience has been that TY provides a bridge for students to move from a state of dependence at junior level to a more independent and active role with regard to their education and their future. The TY Programme gives an excellent opportunity for students to mature, to get better insights into work and adult life and to develop a wide range of skills and competencies.
The TY Programme is quite broad and aims to combines traditional academic subjects with work experience and social development. It aims to integrate these various activities with a view to:
- Assisting students to take responsibility for their own learning and decision-making
- Providing experience for students of the work environment
- Providing opportunities for personal growth through participation in various social activities and voluntary work
- Providing opportunities for students who have been under-achieving to improve their performance
- Encouraging students to develop a positive approach to learning and to their own education.
The TY Programme offers a number of advantages. It provides an opportunity for young people to remaining within the educational system for an extra year. Research at home and abroad has underlined that the length of time young people spend in the educational system is an important aspect of their overall educational development. Studies have shown that those who took the TY option were more likely to select and stay with the subjects at higher level and to try new subjects which they had not taken before. They were also more likely to gain considerably more CAO points than their peers who did not take Transition Year option.
In Balbriggan Community College, the TY Programme combines traditional academic study with the opportunity to develop social, vocational and personal skills. Students will study “core” subjects and will also have the opportunity to study optional subjects and get involved in various activities.
Core Subjects: These subjects include English, Gaeilge, Mathematics, Religion, Sports and Recreation. These subjects include History, Business Mini Company, Home Economics, Chemistry, Geography, Art, Biology, Technical Graphics, Building Construction, Music, Engineering and Physics.
Extra Subjects / Activities may include: Young Scientist, Computers/ECDL/ Computer Programming, Debating, First Aid, Mini Company, Road Safety, Self Defence, Study Skills, School Bank, GAA Coaching, Communication Skills, Bridge, Personal Development, School Quiz Team, Creative Writing, Green Team, Young Social Innovators, Drama and Gaisce.
Work Experience: Work Experience is an integral part of the TY Programme – one day a week, with preparation before the work placement and follow-up exercises after the work experience is an important aspect of the year. This provides students with real opportunities to develop and apply many of the skills they have acquired in school. As a result, they will become more aware of their personal talents and strengths upon which they can base their future career choices.
The TY Programme also offers a variety of extra-curricular activities including Community Awareness, Pastoral Care Programme, Outdoor Adventure Activities, retreats and fund-raising as well as a full range of sports.
Students taking part in the TY programme have a number of opportunities available to them. All students will participate in outdoor pursuits activities as well as an optional foreign tour.
Throughout the year strict assessment procedures will be applied within the subject areas. Assessment procedures will include homework, class tests and end of term Examinations. Various modules including First Aid and Mini Company may be assessed by external bodies such as the Red Cross and the Schools Enterprise Programme. Students will also be assessed through interview which allows students to develop their communication and interview skills.