Certificate in Professional Irish: General information

Who is this course for?
The Certificate in Professional Irish is a part-time programme aimed at public sector employees who deal with the public on a regular basis and are required on occasion to provide a service through Irish. Those who undertake the course have an opportunity to learn specialised language relating to their work and to gain a recognised qualification at the same time.

The aim of the course
The Certificate in Professional Irish seeks to provide participants with the confidence and language skills necessary to communicate through Irish with the public in the context of their work, and to also use the language in social situations.

The Certificate in Professional Irish is available at four levels on the National Framework of Qualifications, i.e. Levels 3, 4, 5 and 6. The level of competency in Irish required to undertake those various levels is explained in the column on the left and on page 5 of the course brochure.

Course structure
Students attend a classroom-based session or live online class, usually once a week. In addition to this, an account is created for them on ranganna.com, Gaelchultúr’s e-learning website, and they have the opportunity to do interactive exercises on that site and receive instant feedback. They can also use this resource to revise what they have covered in class and to prepare for upcoming classes.

Both general everyday language and language relating to the work environment are taught in the course. Participants learn language relating to the workplace and they are also taught how to deal with customers through Irish on the phone and face to face.

Teaching approach
The Certificate in Professional Irish teachers use a modern learner-centred approach in the classroom. Pair work and group work, role play activities and language games feature prominently, giving students an opportunity to practise what they’ve been taught. While some grammar is taught during the course, it is made accessible and precedence is given to interactive, consciousness-raising exercises. Only grammar that helps students communicate more effectively is taught and complicated terminology is avoided.

Assessment during the course
The participants undertake continuous assessment throughout the course and this is worth 55% of the overall marks. Students also undertake an oral exam at the end of the programme and this accounts for the remaining 45%.

Pre-course assessment
When registering for the Certificate in Professional Irish online, you will be required to complete a short survey assessment as part of the registration process. Once the assessment survey has been analysed, a member of the Gaelchultúr team will be in touch with you if a phone assessment is necessary. For those who are not sure what level of the course is most suitable for them, we recommend they complete our online Irish test.