Learning for Life and Work

G.C.S.E. Learning for Life and Work

Young people face many challenges in life and have many important decisions to make. In this subject we look at many aspects of life such as family, friends, school and work. Learning for life and work creates an opportunity to think through different issues that affect the young people.

We look at aspects of local and global citizenship thinking about questions such as ‘What are my rights and what responsibilities go with them? What is my attitude to others who are different?’ We study a module on Personal Development and focus on questions such as ‘How can I look after my own well-being? How should I deal with relationships?’ Our last module is one on employability, enabling the young people to explore questions such as ‘How is the workplace changing? Taking account of my strengths and interests, where can I best fit in?’

Learning for Life and Work helps young people to make informed choices and act responsibly in today’s society.

In Downshire School we follow a Modular Course which consists of five units.

  • Two of the units are controlled assessments.
  • The other 3 units are written exams.
  • All are based on the following three areas of study.

Local and Global Citizenship

  • Diversity and inclusion in Northern Ireland and the wider world
  • Rights and social responsibilities, in relation to local, national and global issues
  • The role of society and government in safeguarding rights
  • Non-governmental organisations
  • Key democratic institutions and their role in promoting inclusion, justice and democracy
  • Understanding how to participate in a range of democratic processes

Personal Development

  • Understanding how to maximise and sustain health and well-being
  • Concept of self, managing emotions and reactions
  • Recognising, assessing and managing risk
  • Understanding relationships and sexuality, and the responsibilities of healthy relationships
  • Understanding the roles and responsibilities of parenting
  • Developing further competence as discerning consumers in preparation for independent living


  • The impact of globalisation on employment
  • Recruitment and selection procedures, taking into account the rights and responsibilities of employees and employers
  • Self-employment and relevant sources of support
  • Maintaining an effective working environment
  • Investigating the increasing social responsibility of business in the community