A framework approach
A framework approach has been used to develop this specification for the learning and teaching of a number of Leaving Certificate curricular languages including Portuguese. This involves a common approach across each specification including the introduction, aims, expectations for learners and assessment approaches.
The Leaving Certificate foreign language specification for Portuguese is intended for learners from all language backgrounds. This includes, but is not limited to, learners from heritage language backgrounds. It offers opportunities to develop communicative capacity and linguistic and intercultural awareness in a wide range of real-life and authentic contexts.
This specification was designed with all standard variations of the Portuguese language in mind. Accordingly, learning outcomes and experiences are intended to meet the needs of all learners including, but not limited to, those from Angolan, Brazilian, Mozambican, Portuguese and other Portuguese-speaking heritage backgrounds.
The expectations for learners articulated in this specification are aligned at a similar level to the current Leaving Certificate languages of French, German, Spanish and Italian and are broadly aligned to A2/B1 levels of the CEFR*. It is available to all learners including those from a heritage language background who wish to improve some or all of the skills within their communicative repertoire and those who have no prior experience with the language. Assessment will be offered at both Higher and Ordinary levels.
* The communicative competences that language learners need, in order to be effective users of a second language, are described by the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR), published by the Council of Europe in 2001 and updated in 2018. The aim of the CEFR is to provide a ‘common basis for the elaboration of language syllabuses, curriculum guidelines, examinations, textbooks, etc. across Europe’ (Council of Europe 2001, p. 1: www.coe.int/portfolio).