Academic Collaborator: university of hertfordshire (psqm)

providing long term support and funding to develop the primary science quality mark


The Primary Science Quality Mark (PSQM) is a nationally recognised award programme to develop and celebrate the quality of science teaching and learning in primary schools, established in 2010. Subject leaders carry out a rigorous year-long process of school evaluation to improve science leadership, teaching and learning. The PSQM programme was launched with support from the Wellcome Trust, and since 2013 has been led from the School of Education at the University of Hertfordshire in a strategic partnership with the Primary Science Teaching Trust.


  • There are over 80 PSQM hub leaders across the UK, and beyond, supporting primary science subject leaders in over 500 schools per year to achieve the award.
  • Following the process, teachers report a growth in confidence to teach science and are offering a wider range of learning opportunities to their pupils.
  • Ofsted (2011) noted the consequent positive impact not only on pupils’ performance but also on their engagement and enjoyment.
  • Ofsted (2013) observed that the PSQM process ensures that school leaders evaluate their provision and justify their science curriculum as being fit for promoting good learning as well as make positive connections and collaborations across schools.


Key areas:

  • the profile of science in primary schools
  • science subject leadership
  • the use of self-evaluation to design appropriate CPD provision and to bring about effective change in teacher practice and identity


WHITE, E., DICKERSON, C., MACKINTOSH, J. & LEVY, R. 2016. Evaluation of the Primary Science Quality Mark programme 2013-15. University of Hertfordshire.

TURNER, J. with MARSHALL, S., FARLEY, A. and HARRISS, L. 2013. Primary Science Quality Mark: Learning from good practice in primary science. What can we learn about current practice in primary science teaching and learning in England from the Primary Science Quality Mark award programme? London: Wellcome Trust. Available at

WHITE, E., DICKERSON, C. and MACKINTOSH, J. 2015. Impact of Royal Society of Chemistry bursary- funded Primary Science Quality Mark on primary science teaching. Available at


Contact details: Jane Turner