GCSE Curriculum Planning

GCSE Curriculum Planning

We were asked to do an online demo with a school last week as they were interested in developing their curriculum using Stedfast and we realised that we hadn’t really blogged much about developing a curriculum plan for GCSE subjects. What better time to do this as Storm Francis brings heavy rains, wind and is just the latest thing to keep us locked inside!

What are we concerned with when planning a curriculum?

There are some fundamental things to think about when planning a curriculum. Ultimately, it is to deliver high-quality learning and skills. However, as much as we all strive to make this our main priority…..we also need to think about OfSTED and the Education Inspection Framework, particularly the Quality of Education judgement.

All education and training providers need to be able to demonstrate curriculum intent, implementation, impact and sequencing. We also think that curriculum mapping is important as it provides the means to conduct a curriculum gap analysis and through this find where learning and skills outcomes have not been covered by curriculum delivery activities.

GCSE Curriculum Planning

We have created a simple example of how organisations are able to easily conduct curriculum planning for GCSE subjects using Stedfast. This is not the definitive method as Stedfast allows users to plan their curriculum in different ways – it does though provide the structure.

Step 1 – Assessment Planning

The first step in any curriculum planning is to understand what needs to be taught, how you intend to teach it and most importantly how you are going to assess learners to then have the confidence that they understand the topic, have committed it to their long term memory and will do their best in a GCSE exam.

This is all done in the assessment planning phase.

When creating an assessment plan in Stedfast users are able to set out what learners need to know or be able to do. In this example, we have used the AQA GCSE specification as our KS4 assessment plan. We have also added Citizenship and SMSC outcomes to this plan as we want to map delivery in the assessment plan as well as the curriculum implementation plan.

GCSE History Assessment Plan

Once the outcomes have been added we can then identify the success measures. This forms the curriculum intent – what do learners need to know and why.

GCSE curriculum intent

Each measure sets out what learners need to know and why and how this will be measured.

Measuring learner achievement

At this stage, users are also able to map outcomes. In this example, we have mapped the learning with Citizenship and SMSC.

Cross curriculum links

Step 2 – Curriculum Implementation

Once the assessment plan has been developed, users can then turn their attention to curriculum implementation. Begin by setting up the plan. The important area here is to select the number of fields required in the activity template for learning, practice and assessment activities.

curriculum implementation plan

The curriculum implementation plan owner is then able to add the field headings.

curriculum implementation plan headings

Step 3 Adding Curriculum Implementation Plan Activities

Users can now start to add the curriculum implementation plan activities. This is a 3 step process in which the user adds a title, including a short description, when it will be sequenced to be delivered and if the activity requires learning, practice and/or assessment.

adding curriculum activities

The next step is to align the activity with the outcomes in the assessment plan.

align with learning outcomes

Finally, the user is then able to add the activity detail.

add curriculum activity detail

This is then repeated and all of the activities are added to the curriculum implementation plan.

GCSE History Curriculum Implementation Plan

The next step is to check the curriculum sequence using the visual report:

curriculum sequence report

Users are then also able to check the curriculum mapping and conduct a curriculum gap analysis.

curriculum gap analysis

Curriculum Impact

The final stage in the curriculum planning process is to measure curriculum impact. This is done in the assessment plan review section. Staff are allocated measures against which the need to add their findings.

curriculum impact

One or more findings can be added for each measure.


To continuously improve the delivery, users are then able to add actions for each finding:

add curriculum intent findings

add actions to curriculum findings


completed curriculum impact findings

Findings are then added into a programme improvement action plan. The assessment plan report provides an analysis of the findings and actions.

assessment plan report

How can you get Stedfast?

In the first instance, we would recommend booking an online demo so that we can walk you through the system to see if it is right for you. You can do this by booking a session on our contact page https://stedfast.io/contact

However, you are also able to sign up to an account and get a 14-day free trial. To do this please go to our pricing page and you can subscribe there. https://stedfast.io/pricing








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