Curriculum Design for Secondary School Science

Explore a range of approaches to designing your scheme of learning and learn how to build an improved science curriculum.

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The CPD Certification Service

This course has been certified by the CPD Certification Service as conforming to continuing professional development principles. Find out more.

Discover the key components of a strong secondary school science curriculum

On this course, you’ll be introduced to curriculum design for teaching science to students aged 11-19 years.

You’ll explore the advantages and disadvantages of various approaches, as well as how support for teachers can be modelled to support effective learning for students.

You’ll consider how practical work and maths skills for science can be embedded in a curriculum and how progression can be mapped effectively.

Through videos, discussion and tasks, you’ll engage with other teachers, share your experiences of planning science schemes of learning, and plan for future curriculum development.

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Skip to 0 minutes and 5 seconds Designing a science curriculum that works well for students and staff is a challenge. Identifying what works well, and what could be improved is not always easy to do, given the wide range of different approaches taken to designing secondary science programmes. This course from the National STEM Learning Centre is designed to give you a starting point to evaluate your own current science curriculum and begin to identify where changes might be made to increase the effectiveness of your schemes of learning, as well as where things work well. We will look at different curriculum models and the advantages and disadvantages of a variety of approaches, as well as how the day-to-day support for teachers can be modelled to support effective learning for students.

Skip to 0 minutes and 47 seconds The important aspects of effective practical work and embedding appropriate mathematical skills for science within a curriculum will be explored and how progression can be mapped effectively. Through a series of videos, discussion and tasks, you will engage with other teachers, sharing their experiences of different ways of planning science schemes of learning, and be supported by the National STEM Learning Centre to enhance your curriculum and plan for future development.

What topics will you cover?

  • What a good curriculum and scheme of work looks like.
  • Mapping progression of subject knowledge and practical skills across the curriculum.
  • The impact of assessment on different curriculum models.
  • Working together as a department.

Who is this accredited by?

The CPD Certification Service
The CPD Certification Service:

The CPD Certification Service was established in 1996 and is the leading independent CPD accreditation institution operating across industry sectors to complement the CPD policies of professional and academic bodies.

Learning on this course

On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Identify the key features of an effective science curriculum and scheme of work for students aged 11-19 years.
  • Assess the advantages and disadvantages of different curriculum models for secondary science.
  • Identify progression routes though science subjects to maximise learning.
  • Discuss with colleagues the implications of assessment practices on curriculum planning.
  • Evaluate the development of mathematical skills and extended writing across the curriculum.

Who is the course for?

This course is designed for heads of department, or aspiring heads of department, and teachers with responsibility for curriculum planning in secondary science subjects.

Who will you learn with?

I am a Professional Development Leader at the National STEM Learning Centre in York. My background is chemistry and physics secondary teaching, as well as having been a Head of Science.

Professional development leader at the National STEM learning centre.

Who developed the course?

National STEM Learning Centre

The National STEM Learning Centre provides world-class professional development activities and resources to support the teaching of STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) subjects.

What's included?

This is a premium course. These courses are designed for professionals from specific industries looking to learn with a smaller group of like-minded individuals.

  • Unlimited access to this course
  • Includes any articles, videos, peer reviews and quizzes
  • Certificate of Achievement to prove your success when you're eligible
  • Download and print your Certificate of Achievement anytime

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Learning on FutureLearn

Your learning, your rules

  • Courses are split into weeks, activities, and steps to help you keep track of your learning
  • Learn through a mix of bite-sized videos, long- and short-form articles, audio, and practical activities
  • Stay motivated by using the Progress page to keep track of your step completion and assessment scores

Join a global classroom

  • Experience the power of social learning, and get inspired by an international network of learners
  • Share ideas with your peers and course educators on every step of the course
  • Join the conversation by reading, @ing, liking, bookmarking, and replying to comments from others

Map your progress

  • As you work through the course, use notifications and the Progress page to guide your learning
  • Whenever you’re ready, mark each step as complete, you’re in control
  • Complete 90% of course steps and all of the assessments to earn your certificate

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