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Who is it for?

KS3 and KS4 students are undertaking ASDAN Short Course in Science.
Young people of all abilities, mainly aged between 13 and 19 (as well as adults and younger learners, where appropriate). Because Short Courses are multi-level, the focus is on completing challenges and skills development according to individual ability, rather than attainment at a specific level.

Facts and Figures

  • Flexible, multi-level programme
  • Internally moderated
  • Accredits 10-60 hours of activities
  • Can count as up to 3 of the credits needed to achieve the Personal Development Programmes
  • Can count as up to 6 of the credits needed to achieve CoPE
  • Also offers progression to AoPE and Wider Key Skills

Course Content

Module Description
1 Human Machine
2 Forces and Motion 
3 Chemical Change 
4 Biological Changes
5 Space Physics
6 Performance in Sport

Key Stage 2

During years 1-6, pupils should be taught to use the following practical scientific methods, processes and skills through teaching of the programme of study content.
Pupils in year 1 will cover topics:

  • Plants – common wild and garden plants, structure of plants
  • Animals including humans – common animals (carnivore, herbivore and omnivore)
  • Everyday materials
  • Seasonal changes

Pupils in year 2 will cover topics:

  • Living things and their habitats – differences between living, dead and never been alive. Different habitats and food chains.
  • Plants – how seeds and bulbs grow.
  • Animals including humans – how offspring grow into adults, the importance of exercise and diet.
  • Uses of everyday materials.

Pupils in year 3 will cover topics:

  • Plants – different parts of plants, requirements for plants to life and growth and how water is transported in plants
  • Animals including humans – nutrition, the skeleton and muscles
  • Rocks
  • Light – reflection
  • Forces and magnets

Pupils in year 4 will cover topics:

  • Living things and their habitats – grouping living things
  • Animals including humans – the digestive system
  • States of matter
  • Sound
  • Electricity

Pupils in year 5 will cover topics:

  • Living things and their habitats – different life cycles, reproduction in plants and animals.
  • Animals including humans – changes as humans develop
  • Properties and changes of materials
  • Earth and space
  • Forces – gravity, levers and pulleys

Pupils in year 6 will cover topics:

  • Living things and their habitats – classification
  • Animals including humans – circulation and the impact of diets
  • Evolution and inheritance
  • Light – how light travels in straight lines
  • Electricity – simple circuits

Key Stage 3

Key stage 3 follow the AQA Science and cover a range of topics in biology, chemistry and physics.

Biology topics:


  • Movement
  • Cells
  • Breathing and digestion
  • Interdependence
  • Plant reproduction
  • Respiration
  • Photosynthesis
  • Variation
  • Human reproduction
  • Evolution
  • Inheritance
Chemistry topics:


  • Particle model
  • Periodic table
  • Separating mixtures
  • Elements
  • Metals and non-metals
  • Chemical energy
  • Types of reactions
  • Acids and alkalis
  • The earth
  • Climate
  • Earth resources


Physics topics:


  • Gravity
  • Speed
  • Contact forces
  • Pressure
  • Voltage and resistance
  • Current
  • Magnetism
  • Electromagnets
  • Energy costs
  • Energy transfers
  • Work
  • Heating and cooling
  • Sound
  • Light
  • Wave effects
  • Wave properties

Key Stage 4

Key stage 4 follow either OCR Entry Level or OCR GCSE C21st Science Suite Biology B (9-1).


The pupils are entered for the foundation tier where they can gain grades 1-5

OCR 21st Century Science Suite Biology B


B1 – You and your genes
B2 – Keeping Healthy
B3 – Living together – Food and Ecosystems
B4 – Using Food and controlling growth
B5- The human Body – staying alive
B6 – Life on Earth – past, present and future
B7 – Ideas about Science
B8 – Practical Skills

Foundation Tier

Breadth in Biology J257/01 50%
Depth in Biology J257/02 50%

Total 100%

The qualification is 100% external assessment.

Entry Level

Entry level is specially designed to meet the need of those pupils in Key stage 4 for whom courses leading to a GCSE examination do not represent a realistic or appropriate goal. The entry level is assessed into a combination of end- of- item tasks, can -do -tasks and a practical task. They are internally standardised by the centre and externally moderated by OCR.



  • Dead or alive (cells)
  • Babies (reproduction)
  • Control systems
  • Fooling your senses
  • Gasping for breath
  • Casualty
  • You can only have one life – look after it
  • Body wars
  • Creepy crawlies
  • Extinction
  • My genes
  • Food factory




  • Physical or chemical change
  • Acids and alkalis
  • Everything in its place
  • Clear air and water
  • Novel materials
  • Sorting out
  • Lets get together
  • Heavy metal
  • Fuels
  • Are you overreacting
  • How fast? How slow?
  • CSI plus




  • Getting the message
  • Full spectrum
  • Medical rays
  • Hot stuff
  • Alternative energy
  • Nuclear power
  • Our electricity supply
  • Attractive forces
  • Pushes and pulls
  • Driving along
  • Fly me to the moon
  • Final frontiers


End – of – item tests equate to 72% of the total.
Can- do – tasks 8% of the total.
Practical task 20% of the total.
All the science curriculums can be found at:
KS2 – www.gov.uk
KS3 – www.aqa.org.uk
KS4 – www.ocr.org.uk