Learning outcomes, recall,…SGTS Practical Stream - collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu3 are statements that complete the sentence, “By thisend of this lesson/unit/course, you will be able to…” begins with an action verb, typically chosen by thecognitive Bloom’s Level of the outcome (remember,comprehend, apply, analyze, evaluate, create) clarify to the students and to the instructors thewhat it means to “understand” the concept guide instructor’s choice of materials, activities,assessment, etc.: Does it support the LO? Yes: use it.No: find something else.
Topic-level and Course-level LOsSGTS Practical Stream - collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu4You likely have some “big picture” goals for your coursethat can’t be assessed by a single exam question“gain a quantitative perspective on the scale, age anddiversity of our Solar System”“develop evidence-based arguments to defend a position”
A complete set of LOs might haveSGTS Practical Stream - collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu5 3 – 5 course-level LOsThere should be some but not too many: how cansufficiently support 10 course-level outcomes? 50 – 100 topic level LOsThe number changes by discipline (more in intro STEM courses,for example) Typically, lots of lower Bloom’s level goals, withfewer and fewer LOs at higher Bloom’s levels.When you have a list of topic-level LOs, sync them withyour course-level goals (see ASTR 310 Learning Goals)
1. “Back-engineer” LOs from examsSGTS Practical Stream - collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu6Use last year’s (or several years’) final exam. For eachgood question, ask yourself What is this question assessing? What is the learningoutcome I want students to demonstrate to properlyanswer this question? Is that the outcome I want, or is it too low (or high)?When you have a list of LOs, Does it cover everything I want for this course? Have I over- or under-represented any concepts?
2. Draft LOs from course outlineSGTS Practical Stream - collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu7Work your way through the list of topics. For each topic,decide What do I want students to be able to do, todemonstrate they “get” this topic? Don’t worry about drafting many low-level LOs.When you revise, you’ll start grouping them intohigher-level LOs.(see ASTR 310 Learning Goals)
Deciding on the level of a LOSGTS Practical Stream - collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu8Writing learning outcomes is hard because you have to recognize declare (admit)what you want your students to be capable of doing.A good start is picking the verb describing the actionthe students will perform to demonstrate their masteryof the concept.
Bloom’s TaxonomySGTS Practical Stream - collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu9RememberUnderstandApplyAnalyzeEvaluateCreatethink critically about and defend a positiontransform or combine ideas to createsomething newbreak down concepts into partsapply comprehension to unfamiliar situationsdemonstrate understanding of ideas andconceptsremember and recall factual information
Bloom’s TaxonomySGTS Practical Stream - collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu10RememberUnderstandApplyAnalyzeEvaluateCreatehigher order thinkinglower order thinking
Let’s try it: Find a partner and write afew learning outcomes for your class:SGTS Practical Stream - collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu12Pick a questionfrom your exam/hwwrite the LObeing assessedDoes LO contain“understand”?yesGreat!Do anotherone!How does anexpert showunderstanding?no
Share your LOs with your studentsSGTS Practical Stream - collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu13 After you’ve gone to the trouble of creating learningoutcomes, share them with your students (good) publish them as a document along side yoursyllabus (better) include relevant learning goals in your lectureslides at the beginning of each day/topic Rather than always reading them aloud, take the time toremind students what they are and how to use them. TheLOs will be there when they study. Don’t worry about “spoon-feeding” them – so what ifstudents do exactly what you feel demonstratesunderstanding?
Bloom’s Taxonomy of the Cognitive Domain(Levels of Learning) [Wieman, 2007]146. Synthesis: transform and combine ideas to create something newdevelop, create, propose, formulate, design, invent5. Evaluation: think critically about and defend a positionjudge, appraise, recommend, justify, defend, criticize, evaluate4. Analysis: break down concepts into partscompare, contrast, categorize, distinguish, identify, infer3. Application: apply comprehension to unfamiliar situationsapply, demonstrate, use, compute, solve, predict, construct, modify2. Comprehension: demonstrate understanding of ideas, conceptsdescribe, explain, summarize, interpret, illustrate1. Factual Knowledge: remember and recall factual knowledgedefine, list, state, label, name, describeSGTS Practical Stream - collegeclassroom.ucsd.edu
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