Transition Year

Transition Year is a one year school based programme between Junior and Senior Cycle . It is designed to act as a bridge between the two by facilitating the smooth transition from the more dependant learning of the Junior Cycle to the more independent self-directed learning required for the Senior Cycl

TY coordinator contact details:


Core subjects

Transition Year students study the four core subjects: Irish, English, Maths and French throughout the year.

Transition Year modules

These subjects are unique to Transition Year. Students study these subjects on a modular basis.

  • Italian

  • Classics

  • Psychology

  • Computers

  • Web design

  • Careers

Subject sampling layer

Students get the opportunity to sample a range of subjects that they will go on to choose for the Leaving Certificate programme. Some of these subjects are studied on a modular basis.

  • Geography

  • History

  • Religion

  • Business

  • Music

  • Economics

  • Accounting

  • Art

  • Chemistry

  • Biology

  • Physics

  • Chemistry

Work Experience

Work experience is an integral part of Transition Year. Students are encouraged to find their own placement and will spend two weeks at a placement in January/February at the end of the third term.

During the rest of the year, students may obtain placements at other times. Some companies or organisation offer specific weeks during the year. Students may avail of these opportunities. Please see the relevant links and documents.

Student preparation for work experience

Parent preparation for work experience

Gaisce programme

Gaisce or ‘great achievement’ is a self-development programme for young people between the ages of 15-25 and has been in existence since 1985. To date over 300,000 young people have participated in the Gaisce programme.

Students apply online and complete the tasks during Transition Year. The school “Pal” monitors the students’ progress.

The four key areas are:

  • Community Involvement

  • Personal Skill

  • Physical Recreation

  • Adventure Journey

With exception to the Adventure Journey, each challenge area requires a minimum participation of 1 hour per week for 13 weeks. The Adventure Journey takes place over a minimum of 2 days and 1 night. Coláiste Muire students can use their week in Cappanalea or Aghado for their Adventure journey.

An additional 13 weeks must be completed in one challenge area of your choice. This could be an activity you really enjoyed, or an activity in which you feel you still have room for improvement. As a result, it will take at least 26 weeks to complete your Bronze Award, however everyone is free to complete the award at their own pace.

Outdoor Adventure week

During the Transition Year programme in Coláiste Muire, students get the opportunity to spend four nights in Cappanalea and Aghado in Kerry

The week involves Kayaking, Abseiling, Mountain climbing, Orienteering, Team building, and an overnight trek on the fourth night.

These week takes place at the end of October before the mid-term break.

Courses are run by Cappanalea Outdoor Education Centre.

Wellbeing-1 (1).pdf


The student’s wellbeing is central to the Transition Year programme. The focus is on physical and mental wellbeing is central to all aspects of the programme. Students take part in Tai Chi and Yoga in their Activities programme. Students assist in the running of Positive mental health week. They also attend a number of talks dealing with mental health as well as well as a bread-making workshop.

Careers’ programme

Transition Year students experience a wide area of opportunities to assist them with planning their future career. Students have a weekly class where they explore their college options. Students spend two weeks on work-experience placement, and are encouraged to seek other placements during the year. Students get the opportunity to take part in College tasting courses and bespoke programmes in the Pharma industry, Navy, Garda Síochána and other organisations. Students receive talks from a number of guest speakers in the community on various careers.



Transition Year students do three units of Physical education every week. Students are encouraged to use Transition Year to become more active. Students do a variety of activities in modules such as martial arts, dance, yoga, tennis, pitch and putt and gym work. During the year, they also do a local coastal hike, a hike in Torc Mountain, cycling around Killarney National Park and surfing in Castlegregory. See full programme Activities programme.

Culture and History

Transition Year students enjoy a number of different tours with a cultural and historical focus. Students appreciate their local area through tours of Cork harbour and Cork city. Students visit the Kerry Gaeltacht as part of the Gaeilge module.


Life skills

Transition Year students develop many skills that will be relevant to them in their lives. Students get the opportunity too develop their skill in First response, Driving, Road safety and Bread making. Students get a chance to become certified coaches in various sports.

Community participation

Transition Year students are encouraged to play a part in their local community

Every year, students work with local clubs and groups.

Students help out with coaching younger players in sports’ clubs, help out with bag packing for charities, beach clean ups and tidy towns. Every Christmas, students help out with the turning on of the Christmas lights in Crosshaven.

Transition Year links

Students and parents are encouraged to do their own research and follow the links below.

Transition Year Overview – Department of education

Irish times article

Competitions and programmes

Transition Year experience


Careers’ portal – Transition Year