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' handbook
*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.


Part one of the Schools Council Integrated Science Project (SCISP) scheme dealt with Building Blocks. A building block was regarded as any unit of matter which was useful for the particular piece of work being taught. It was the least abstract of the three fundamental concepts underpinning the course and so the...

Part two of the Schools Council Integrated Science Project (SCISP) sample scheme dealt with the conservation, transfer, availability and control of energy under the following headings:
*Transferring energy
*Energy and particle interactions
*Energy and electricity
*Sources of energy

The whole of Part three of the Schools Council Integrated Science Project (SCISP) sample scheme emphasised this concept of interaction. In the language of SCISP, if A has any effect on B, then A is said to interact with B. A and B are often be two or more building blocks; for example, air molecules interact, a...

SCISP Topic Books

The Schools Council Integrated Science Project (SCISP) topic books had different uses. Sometimes they were intended to be read entirely at home as background books; sometimes they were needed for reference in lessons; and occasionally they were required by the teacher...


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