Answers to popular questions about Oxford Smart.

Oxford Smart: FAQs

Answers to popular questions about Oxford Smart.


Yes, the Oxford Smart Curriculum is aligned to the National Curriculum.

The Oxford Smart Curriculum has been built specifically to address what research reveals to be the most pressing considerations for today’s teachers and learners. Our aim is to introduce a curriculum that nurtures inspiration, curiosity, self-regulated learning, a positive mindset, and achievement for all.

An evidence-based curriculum is backed by research and insight. It is based on a secure understanding of concepts and knowledge, which it uses to develop skills, such as critical thinking, metacognition, and more. Read the curriculum direction paper to find out more.

Each subject curriculum has been created by an Oxford Smart Curriculum Group, which is made up of key stakeholders who have used their insight and experiences to help inform and shape the curriculum. Members of each group include awarding body representatives, curriculum and assessment experts, and practising teachers.

The six pillars of the Oxford Smart Curriculum are designed to address the key themes in the educational landscape that we know matter to schools. They are: Coherence, High expectations, Responsive teaching and learning, Metacognitive learning, Learner identity, Awe and wonder.

The pillars are designed to be inclusive, keeping the full range of learners in mind. They aim to support the progression of every learner and ensure that learners develop the capacity to transfer their skills and knowledge across subjects and to life outside school. Watch the video about the six curriculum pillars.

Wellbeing runs throughout all of the pillars. For example, by learning and applying Metacognitive learning strategies, students build resilience and are prepared to face new or complex learning situations. They recognise and control their emotions which has a positive impact on their wellbeing. Wellbeing also forms an important part of Learner Identity, whereby students come to understand how they can use their learning to influence their lives and become confident, successful and engaged members of society.

The Oxford Smart Curriculum is for ages 11–16. However, it will help schools to consider how they build on KS2 as well as easing progression to GCSE.

Currently, Science, English and Maths at KS3 are covered by the curriculum. However, we intend to extend this into KS4 in the near future.


Yes, there are resources available both for teachers and students. The resources have been designed at the same time as the curriculum and assessment, making them an integral part of the Oxford Smart Curriculum Service.

There are both digital and print resources available. Speak to your Educational Consultants to find out more about resources for your subject.

You can access the digital resources on an enhanced version of our Kerboodle platform. Kerboodle is a digital teaching, learning and assessment service for secondary schools, used by more than a million students and teachers, across 60 courses and a wide range of subjects including Modern Languages, Science, Mathematics, English and Geography.

There is lots of support on Kerboodle, including videos and webinars to help you get set up, get going and become a confident user. If you can’t find what you’re looking for, you can get in touch with your Educational Consultants.

Yes, our 30 pioneer schools for KS3 Science have been trialling the resources since September 2021. We have consulted them throughout the development of the resources, ensuring that they meet the needs of all learner types and teachers with different levels of experience. Also, we are recruiting pioneer schools for KS3 English for first teaching from September 2022, as well as trialling content with a number of Year 7 Maths departments in schools.

No, as the resources have been developed as part of the service, they can only be purchased as part of the complete service.

In order to maximise the benefits of the complete service, we recommend that you use the Oxford Smart resources, which have been developed in tandem with the curriculum and assessment. However, we understand that you may want to adapt, add to and personalise the resources for your own needs, and this functionality is available to you on Kerboodle.

The starting reading level for the Year 7 resources is appropriate for 9-11 years.

There is a variety of literacy support for both students and teachers. This will vary across subjects, but will include key words, glossaries, and vocabulary builders for students structured around an age-related progression of literacy skills and areas highlighted as part of the Oxford Language reports about the Word Gap. Suggestions for literacy activities will be included in the teacher support.

Assessment and Next Steps

The assessment materials have been developed alongside the curriculum and the resources, bringing complete coherence between the components and, therefore, providing you with more insightful assessment data. This supports you in diagnosing your learners’ strengths, weaknesses, misconceptions and gaps in learning, so you can intervene easily with relevant teaching or resources.

The assessment framework is based on a Developing, Secure, Extending model, with Secure indicating that students have a secure grasp of the knowledge or skills specified in the curriculum. The assessment model combines formative and summative assessments as well as low-stakes quizzing to help students retain new concepts over time. Assessments are both digital and paper-based.

Yes, Oxford Smart at KS3 will prepare students to move onto any KS4 qualification in that subject area.

Yes, Oxford Smart at KS4 will prepare students to move onto any KS5 qualification in that subject area.

Assessment data, evidence and insight are used to help inform next steps. It provides you with scaffolded support, help videos (for Science) and quizzes to give your students the confidence and motivation to progress as well as extension opportunities to deepen learning. Your students are moved on only when they are secure in their knowledge and understanding, creating personalised pathways through the curriculum.

Next steps are provided for teachers as well as for students. They include checkpoints where you receive additional insight about confidence levels. For Science, there are also intervention lessons, so you can make personalised recommendations to each of your students.

Automated next steps are provided through the Kerboodle platform. Once your students have completed an assessment, auto-marking will deliver a follow-up task to them. This will consolidate their understanding, with additional support provided to achieve Secure. Not all assessments are auto-marked; e.g. for English, checkpoints are teacher-marked.

Yes, there are also paper-based next steps provided throughout the print resources.

Data, evidence and insights

Data wraps around the complete Oxford Smart Curriculum Service and is used to monitor your school’s performance at student and class level. Over time, we will use the data gathered to develop and improve our complete Oxford Smart offering.

We will work with schools to collect assessment data at individual, class and – later – school level.

Hopefully, we will be able to pinpoint any common issues that schools might be facing and use these to create targeted CPD or develop resources that will help you support your learners.

It is important to show you and your students how they are performing, so they feel empowered to succeed. Data can facilitate your planning and help you to address misconceptions, where appropriate, as well as provide meaningful feedback and next steps. This will help you to support your learners in a way that increases their motivation and improves attainment.

We will talk to teachers regularly to gather insights about the ways they are using Oxford Smart and ways in which they think it can be improved or in which it has improved teaching and learning in their schools. We will share these insights with teachers and use it to help the curriculum evolve over time.

At OUP, we are committed to protecting your personal information and respecting data protection laws. Please read our privacy policy here.

CPD and research

The Oxford Smart Curriculum Service includes integrated CPD to support your planning, delivery and assessment, and to help you embed the six pillars into the curriculum, so you become more confident practitioners. It includes support videos, expert podcasts and webinars to provide you with regular support. There is a CPD and Research Hub on Kerboodle, which includes information and evidence in a variety of formats to help you take an evidence-informed approach to developing and delivering a highly effective curriculum.

If you sign up to join one of our webinars, either live or to watch in your own time, you will be sent a certificate once you have watched the webinar.

Your Educational Consultants will be able to provide you with details about the CPD available during your first year of teaching Oxford Smart for your subject.

We suggest you talk to your Educational Consultants who will be able to advise you on the best approach to take if you need additional support.

CPD is subject-specific, although there may be times when we run a webinar on overarching approaches to teaching and learning using Oxford Smart.

Most CPD is asynchronous, so you can watch it at your leisure. Even for live or face-to-face CPD, there will be the opportunity to catch up with a recording, either on Kerboodle or via our website.

The CPD and Research Hub on Kerboodle gives you access to the research you need.


We will provide schools with an onboarding journey guide with for each step and a timeframe. Any webinars that you need to register for will be hyperlinked within the guide.

Prices will vary depending on your subject choices, your school size and the number of paper-based resources you choose to invest in. We suggest you contact your Educational Consultants to find out more about pricing for your subject.

Your Kerboodle subscription gives you 12 month’s access to digital resources to support your Oxford Smart curriculum. Print copies of student textbooks can be purchased too. As part of our Oxford Smart Curriculum Service, you will also receive regular CPD sessions and ongoing support from the OUP Curriculum Team.

The Oxford Smart Curriculum Service offers excellent value for money. Subscribing to Oxford Smart offers you a complete package comprising an evidence-informed and coherent curriculum, supporting resources, assessment, next steps, data and insights, professional development and ongoing support from the OUP Curriculum Team.

Schools with fewer than 450 students on roll will receive a small school discount. We suggest you speak to your Educational Consultant to discuss your school’s needs.

If your school already has a Kerboodle subscription, there aren’t any additional system requirements. For the latest system requirements visit:

You will receive an onboarding journey guide when you place your order, which will provide you with all the support you need.

There are case studies for Oxford Smart Activate available on our website

Contact one of our friendly and professional Educational Consultants, who is on hand to answer your queries.

Take a look at our evaluation site where you can find out more about the curriculum and other components. Don't forget to sign up for updates to find out more about your subject: