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Thursday, June 18 • 11:30am - 12:30pm
CON06.03 - Solving the puzzle of learning outcomes and curriculum: How do the pieces fit?

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Effective student learning begins with well-designed programs. Integration of a learning outcomes and assessment approach into a curriculum improvement cycle is now the norm in curriculum design. Careful attention to constructive alignment in courses and programs clearly enhances the understanding of links between learning goals, learning activities, and assessment (Biggs, 2014; Hubball et al., 2007). It is essential for faculty to understand the elements and sequence of the curriculum improvement cycle. What is the cycle? Where are learning outcomes situated in the cycle? What is involved with program assessment? When does all this have to be done? Intended for faculty, curriculum committees, and administrators, the purpose of this session is to present and engage participants in developing a curriculum improvement process appropriate for their use. A continuous improvement model for curriculum development, based on published literature, will form the basis of the session. In small groups, participants will discuss the elements of an effective program assessment plan with emphasis on program learning outcomes in the context of their institutions. At the end of the session, participants should be able to name and describe the key stages in curriculum design and improvement, and make recommendations for direct and indirect assessment of their program-level learning outcomes. Well written program learning outcomes presented in the context of curriculum improvement benefit students, faculty and other stakeholders in understanding the rationale and structure of program design. Making transparent a fine-tuned curriculum design and assessment plan provides evidence of high quality educational experiences for students. 


Anonymous, The educational value of course-level learning objectives/outcomes. Eberly Center for Teaching Excellence, Carnegie Mellon. Retrieved from http://www.cmu.edu/teaching/resources/Teaching/CourseDesign/Objectives/CourseLearningObjectivesValue.pdf
Biggs, J. (2014). Constructive alignment in university teaching. HERDSA Review of Higher Education, 1, 5-22. 

Hubball, H., Gold, N., Mighty, J., & Britnell, J. (2007). Supporting the implementation of externally generated learning outcomes and learning-centred curriculum development: an integrated framework. New Directions for Teaching and Learning, Winter 2007, 112, 93-105.

Lizzio, A., Wilson, K., Simons, R. (2002). University students’ perception of the learning environment and academic outcomes: implications for theory and practice. Studies in Higher Education, 27, 27-52.

avatar for Peter Arthur

Peter Arthur

University of British Columbia Okanagan
avatar for Stephanie Chu

Stephanie Chu

Vice Provost Teaching & Learning, Kwantlen Polytechnic University
Passionate about advancing teaching and learning and related University community and culture. Imagine what we can do together!
avatar for Gary Hunt

Gary Hunt

Coordinator, Teaching and Learning Support, Thompson Rivers University
avatar for Liesel Knaack

Liesel Knaack

Director, Centre for Innovation and Excellence in Learning, Vancouver Island University
Liesel is the director of the Centre for Innovation and Excellence in Learning at VIU. The centre supports faculty and students with learning technologies, pedagogical design, online learning and scholarly teaching and learning. Liesel was formerly a K-12 teacher and Associate Professor... Read More →

Thursday June 18, 2015 11:30am - 12:30pm PDT
Bayshore Salon EF

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