CSI and Priority Learning Units

PLUs are the central curriculum components of Level 2 Learning Programmes. Each PLU includes a number of elements which clarify the knowledge, skills and attitudes involved. The PLUs, elements and their associated learning outcomes are set out in Level 2 Learning Programmes: Guidelines for Teachers.

There is an overlap between the learning in the PLUs with the key skills of junior cycle developed for all students.
The Table below lists the PLUs, some elements of those PLUs and the sorts of associated learning activities that will support students in achieving the learning outcomes and elements of the PLUs. Teachers can also build many of the other elements of the key skills of junior cycle into their classroom planning.

Priority Learning Unit

PLU element


Student learning activities

Communicating and Literacy


Communicating appropriately for a variety of purposes and demonstrating attentiveness as a listener


In strand 3, the student might role-play as a CSI detective, interviewing other students as suspects or witnesses, to obtain evidence.

Throughout the course the student reads and/or listens to obtain information.

The student may also present findings to an audience in strand 4 in a variety of forms



Developing an awareness of weight and capacity

In strand 2, a number of experiments require the student to use a balance, measuring jugs and graduated cylinders, thus gaining an understanding of mass/weight and volume.

Personal Care


Knowing how to stay safe


In strand 2, the student identifies safety hazards that may occur in a lab and the precautions to take to avoid such hazards.

Living in a Community


Developing good relationships

Taking on roles within teams is important in science. In all strands, the student learns to communicate appropriately with different people, whether peers, teachers, members of the community or visiting speakers, and to participate co-operatively in group situations.

Preparing for Work


Being able to set goals for learning


The student has various targets to work towards e.g. completion of an experiment and identification of a substance in strand 1.

Throughout the course, the student learns the importance of sequencing tasks in order to reach a goal and of revisiting tasks and working on them over a period of time.