SCY is a multidisciplinary R&D project that employs iterative cycles of rapid design and prototyping, requirements engineering, and empirical research. SCY combines pedagogical, technical, and domain-specific aspects of the design work:
- Pedagogical issues involve the development of pedagogical scenarios (see also SCY Scenario Wiki).
- Technical issues relate to the design of the system architecture and the general learning environment (called SCY-Lab) including tools and services.
- The domain-specific part concerns missions, these are the actual domain related SCY learning environments. SCY missions cover the follwoing topics: "the design of a CO2-friendly house", "creating a healthy pizza", "determining water quality", and "forensic DNA".
SCY-Lab's overall system architecture allows for a swift inclusion of new tools and services and new contents by quick rounds of testing and feedback from end users (teachers and learners). Short testing cycles serve to assess individual components on aspects of usability, user appreciation and technical and conceptual soundness. Evaluation, both formative and summative, takes place on a larger scale, using integrated versions of the system to examine all available components in their interaction.
Once SCY-Lab has taken its final form the focus shifts to its implementation in science education. This involves the design of both teacher manuals on how to use SCY-Lab in schools and a SCY authoring system and hands-on teacher training to familiarize science teachers with SCY-Lab's basic assumptions, operation, and underlying ideas.