How To Get A H1 In Leaving Certificate Business

We have teamed up with our Business Grinds Teacher, Breffni, to put together these 5 tips to help you achieve a H1 in the Leaving Certificate Business exam.

1. Know how to structure your answer

If you’re not already familiar with SEE (State, Explain, Example) get familiar with it now! It’s the basic structure for almost every business answer. However, a common feature among H1 students is they use two separate points to fully explain before giving an answer. Therefore think of it as S.E.E.E (State, Explain, Expand this point, Example). The answer below illustrates what is meant by this:

Q. Discuss one method to improve stock control in a business.

A. Just in Time (State)

Just in Time is a stock control system that ensures items only arrive at a warehouse when they are needed (explain). This benefits a business as it reduces the likelihood of stock deteriorating or being stolen while being stored for long periods (expanded).

For example, if a builder had all materials needed for a new house delivered on the first day, wooden products could get ruined and expensive items like tiles may be stolen (example). 

2. Ensure you answer the question being asked!!

It is imperative you answer the question asked. This may mean referring to the text or using an expansion/example point to help answer this.

Q. Describe the impact on staff morale under different styles of leadership (15 marks)

This requires you to State the leadership style, explain what this style involves and finally explain the impact on staff morale under this style. 

3. Read newspapers/ listen to news headlines

Another common trait among H1 students is the examples they give to support their answers are topical/up to date. This is easy to achieve by simply following some Irish news websites on your Insta or TikTok feeds. Take a minute each day to look at what is being reported and ask ‘how can I relate this to my Business course’.

Watching/listening to the news headlines is also a good option- though if feeling really nerdy- buy a copy of the Sunday Independent and with a highlighter go through the articles and highlight each headline and where it can relate to the course. Remember- some articles may cover more than one area.

4. Practice LC Business Questions

Quite an obvious one but many students don’t spend enough time going over past paper questions. To many, study means reading over some notes from class. This isn’t enough. Put some context to your study by answering past paper questions, even if not assigned by your teacher. Following the new structure above you should be looking to write 3 full A4 pages for each long question in Section C or 1 page per 20 mark question (4 points @ 5m each). As you practice these continue to work on your timing with the goal of being able to complete these in 24 minutes or less per full question. Finally- pay particular attention to what the examiner is asking (mentioned above) and the outcome verb they are using i.e. Discuss, Explain, Distinguish etc. If stuck for time just put down the Stated points you would give to answer each part of the question and one or two keywords under each that you would have used to explain it i.e.

Q. Explain the functions of an HR Manager (20 marks) – 4 points required

1. Manpower planning

Optimum level of staff and skillset

2. Recruitment and Selection

Job Description and Person Specification, Interviews

3. Training

Improves efficiency quicker, induction training

4. Performance Appraisal

Offer rewards (bonus or promotion), additional training if bad performance

5. One Page Summaries

Without doubt, the Business course is one of the longest across all leaving cert subjects. It's impossible to remember everything. Before you know it, the mocks will be approaching and you may not have finished the course, let alone had a chance to revise! Creating end of unit spider diagrams will help you recall what you need to know. Below are some examples of the keywords you should be able to explain fully at the end of a unit. Don’t be overawed when you see these. Take them topic by topic and use your book for help if you need to as you want to get all the keywords in. By the end of this, you will have 7 pages only which contain the entire course.

Now- here is the key. Surround yourself with these. If you have a study desk at home put the most recent unit on the wall in front of you. From time to time- pick up the sheet and go through it until you are happy you can explain every word. These will be vital the morning of any Christmas, Summer but most importantly Leaving Cert exam. You’ll be glad of the work you put in!

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If you haven't checked out our blog post on creating mindmaps using miro, you can read it here.

Enjoy & best wishes.

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