Research and analysis

Intention and substance: primary school science curriculum research

This short findings paper provides deeper insight into the data collected from Ofsted's research programme.



Our phase 3 curriculum research found differences in curriculum quality between subjects, particularly in primary schools. Inspectors found that science and most of the foundation subjects often had weaknesses in the curriculum design that were not present in English and mathematics.

Because science is a core subject within the national curriculum, this is a particular worry. For that reason, this paper provides some further detail on the science findings from the phase 3 research.

This paper is Ofsted’s contribution to an online symposium on the curriculum in science. View the full collection of papers produced for Curriculum in Science: A Symposium.

Published 12 February 2019