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Curriculum for Excellence

Further information about Curriculum for Excellence can be found on the Education Scotland website:

Bringing learning to life and life to learning

Curriculum for Excellence has now been introduced across Scotland for all 3-18 year olds. It aims to achieve a transformation in education in Scotland by providing a coherent, more flexible and enriched curriculum from 3 to 18, to raise standards, to prepare our children for a future they do not yet know and to equip them for the jobs of tomorrow in a fast changing world.  

Curriculum for Excellence enables professionals to teach subjects creatively, to work together across the school and with other schools, to share best practice and explore learning together. Teachers and practitioners will share information to plan a child’s ‘learning journey’ from 3-18, helping their progression from nursery to primary, primary to secondary and beyond, ensuring the change is smooth.   They’ll ensure children continue to work at a pace they can cope with and with challenge they can thrive on. 

Developing Skills and Attributes: The Four Capacities

The 3-18 curriculum aims to ensure that all children and young people in Scotland develop the attributes, knowledge and skills they will need to flourish in life, learning and work. The knowledge, skills and attributes learners will develop will allow them to demonstrate four key capacities – to be successful learners, confident individuals, responsible citizens and effective contributors.

The Totality of the Curriculum

The curriculum includes all of the experiences which are planned for children through their education. These experiences are grouped into four categories.

Curriculum areas and subjects: The curriculum areas are the organisers for setting out the experiences and outcomes. Each area contributes to the four capacities.

Interdisciplinary learning: How the curriculum should include space for learning beyond subject boundaries.

Ethos and life of the school: The starting point for learning is a positive ethos and climate of respect and trust based upon shared values across the school community.

Opportunities for personal achievement: Pupils need opportunities for achievements both in the classroom and beyond, giving them a sense of satisfaction and building motivation, resilience and confidence.

Experiences and Outcomes

The experiences and outcomes are an essential component of Scotland’s new curriculum. They signpost progression in learning and set challenging standards that will equip young people to meet the challenges of the 21st century. The title 'experiences and outcomes' recognises the importance of the quality and nature of the learning experience in developing attributes and capabilities and in achieving active engagement, motivation and depth of learning. An outcome represents what is to be achieved. The experiences and outcomes are used both to assess progress in learning and to plan next steps.