Staying on Track with a Course Map

In a recent post in Faculty Focus, Vicki Caruna, associate professor of education at St. Mary’s College, suggests using a backwards design approach to create course maps that see learning outcomes as “destinations” — which students can also see and move towards. Planning the course from these desired ends, allows instructors to then construct formative and summative assessments that support student learning as their skills and knowledge grow along the way. With this clear vision of the course goals and assessments in the mind, the means for getting there — teaching strategies and learning experiences — can be designed and refined to ensure students arrive at the right place. Caruna’s article includes some useful tidbits on principles of curriculum design and quality learning experiences.

Image: Map of Asia (hand colored) 1867 from Cornell, Sarah S. “Cornell’s Primary Geography” (Revised Edition) p. 56 New York: D. Appleton & Co 1867, licensed under Wikimedia Commons