These resources have been reviewed and selected by STEM Learning’s team of education specialists for factual accuracy and relevance to teaching STEM subjects in UK schools.

Science in the National Curriculum 1995

This revision of the National Curriculum builds on the 1991 version and follows Sir Ron Dearing’s 1993 review of the whole National Curriculum.

*It retains the four Attainment Targets (AT), each with an associated Programme of Study (PoS), although AT1 becomes ‘Experimental and investigative science’, and AT2 becomes ‘Life processes and living things’.

*The PoS for Experimental and investigative science was revised to allow for broader range of experimental and investigative work, and to give increased prominence to qualitative work.

*The 10 levels of the ATs were reorganised to eight levels which run only to the end of Key Stage Three. Up to level eight could be taught using the Key Stage Three PoS, but the new “exceptional performance” would draw on Key Stage Four PoS.

*Some duplication across subjects was removed; material found in more than one Key Stage was allocated to where it is most appropriately taught; the balance between chemistry and earth science shifted towards chemistry; and energy resources and energy transfer was moved to be first taught in Key Stage Three.


AT1 Experimental and investigative science
*Planning experimental work (Key Stage One) - Planning experimental procedures (Key Stage Four)
*Obtaining evidence
*Considering evidence (Key Stage One/Two) - Analysing evidence and drawing conclusions (Key Stage Three/Four)

AT2 Life and living processes
*Life processes (Key Stage One/Two) - Life processes and cell activity (Key Stage Three/Four)
*Humans as organisms
*Green plants as organisms
*Variation and classification (Key Stage One/Two) - Variation, classification and inheritance (Key Stage Three/Four)
*Living things in their environment

AT3 Materials and their properties
*Grouping materials (Key Stage One/Two) - Classifying materials (Key Stage Three/Four)
*Changing materials
*Separating mixtures and materials (Key Stage Two) - Patterns of behaviour (Key Stage Three/Four)

AT4 Physical processes
*Electricity (Key Stage One/Two) - Electricity and magnetism (Key Stage Three/Four)
*Forces and motion
*Light and sound (Key Stage One to Three) – Waves (Key Stage Four)
*The Earth and beyond (Key Stage Two to Four only)
*Energy resources and energy transfer (Key Stage Three to Four only)
*Radioactivity (Key Stage Four only)

At the start of each PoS section, there were included some overarching themes to apply across the four areas of the PoS, some of which draw on AT1 and AT17 from the 1989 version. These are Systematic enquiry; Application of science; The nature of scientific ideas; Communication; and Health and safety – and they do not have level descriptors.

Show health and safety information

Please be aware that resources have been published on the website in the form that they were originally supplied. This means that procedures reflect general practice and standards applicable at the time resources were produced and cannot be assumed to be acceptable today. Website users are fully responsible for ensuring that any activity, including practical work, which they carry out is in accordance with current regulations related to health and safety and that an appropriate risk assessment has been carried out.

Information on the permitted use of this resource is covered by the Category Three Content section in STEM Learning’s Terms and conditions.