Schools Council Integrated Science Project (SCISP)
The Schools Council Integrated Science Project (SCISP) was developed to meet the needs of the able 13-16 year old student. The accompanying GCE O level assessment led to a double certification. The sample scheme of work was devised and published in the early 1970s on the assumption that an average of one-fifth of a school's timetable will be devoted to science during the three years it is being taught. This preceded the general introduction of broad balanced science in the 1980s.
A feature of the SCISP course was the breadth of coverage of science including astronomy, geology and meteorology, behavioural science and some aspects of social sciences as well as biology, chemistry and physics.
The title adopted by the SCISP course was ‘Patterns’. This was because the main integrating theme of the programme was the idea that the basic activities of science are common to all branches of the subject. Although these activities include observing, classifying, measuring, predicting, and so on, as well as the flash of inspiration and the leap in the dark, the ultimate (knowledge) activities in this scheme are:
*the search for patterns, where a pattern means a generalisation, and
*the use of these patterns in problem-solving, whether of a laboratory, a theoretical, or an 'everyday' type.
Publications for teachers and Technicians
*Teachers' guides 1 and 2 and Technicians manuals 1 and 2 for part one 'Building blocks'
*Teachers' guide 3 and Technicians manuals 3 for part two ‘Energy’
*Teachers' guide 4 and Technicians manuals 4 for part three ‘Change’
Publications for students
*Four manuals for students, corresponding to the four teacher’s guides
*Topic books for homework and for reference in lessons.
Alternative approaches to balanced science
This Integrated Science Project was complementary to Nuffield Secondary Science which often led to Mode III CSE examinations. Shortly after publication of SCISP, the CESIS project began the development of a flexible course drawing on SCISP and Nuffield Secondary Science which came to be called Nuffield 13 to 16.