The Fermilab ARISE Project three-year high-school science curriculum framework reflects the following educational philosophy:
The school is a community of learners reaching beyond classroom walls to interact with local and global communities.
Modes of student learning and concepts studied are derived from a core of state and nationally-accepted standards subject to local interpretation and applicable to contemporary societal issues.
The curriculum is coherent throughout the various fields of science, integrated with other disciplines and connected to real issues in everyday life.
In an open, friendly and flexible environment, teachers provide opportunities and guidance for students to participate in a variety of learning activities.
Learning to conduct scientific inquiry requires a wide range of equipment, materials and technology as well as interaction with scientists, engineers and technicians.
As problem solvers, students develop higher-level thinking skills best by taking ownership for their learning (or assuming some of the responsibility for learning). This can be encouraged in many ways, such as engaging students in choosing and planning study projects and structuring classroom environments. Both group and individual study are important. Group work encourages the need for cooperation among students, among teachers and among students and teachers while individual activities encourage self-confidence and a sense of accomplishment.
Effective and efficient student assessment measures learning in a variety of ways, including methods such as performance-based assessment, self-assessment and peer assessment in addition to traditional methods.