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Writing effective learning objectives

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How to write effective learning objectives for library instruction.

How to write effective learning objectives for library instruction.

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  • 1. Writing Effective Learning Objectives March 31, 2014 Cynthia Tysick cat2@buffalo.edu Associate Librarian University at Buffalo
  • 2. What we’ll cover  The goal(s) of learning objectives  An introduction to the ABCD method for writing learning objectives  An introduction to Bloom’s Taxonomy  Evaluating your current learning objectives  Identifying gaps in your current learning objectives based on the ACRL Information Literacy Standards  Employing the ABCD method to rewrite your current learning objectives  Constructing a lesson plan necessary to meet your revised learning objectives  Creating assessments that align with your revised learning objectives
  • 3. Learning objectives…  are not goals. Goals are general and non-specific, can be used for a course or curriculum. (e.g. “Create an information literate, lifelong learner.”)  are written for units of study.  guide the student to what they are expected to do after instruction. (e.g. “The student will distinguish academic scholarship from non-academic scholarship.”) Bonus: they help guide the lesson plan!
  • 4. ABCD Method  4 components of a learning objective: ◦ A is the Audience (always the student) ◦ B is the behavior or action verb ◦ C is the condition for the objectives ◦ D is the degree of achievement or criteria
  • 5. The action verb is the key!  Action verb can’t be omitted ◦ Tells the student what they will do after instruction. (e.g. distinguish academic scholarship from non-academic scholarship)  Benjamin Bloom and his colleague, David Krathwohl, created a taxonomy of verbs used to write effective and measureable learning objectives.
  • 6. Bloom’s Taxonomy…  describes and classifies observable knowledge, skills, attitudes, behaviors and abilities.  runs under the assumption that there is cognitive activity happening in the brain. ◦ Levels of observable action ◦ Three domains: cognitive (thinking), affective (attitudes), and psychomotor (doing)  is commonly in the cognitive domain.
  • 7. Cognitive Domain  Level 1: remember (knowledge) & understand (comprehension)  Level II: apply (application) & analyze (analysis)  Level III: evaluate (evaluation) and create (synthesis) Each level demonstrates a progression of critical thinking skills.
  • 8. See the handouts  Critical thinking is developed as you go up the levels.  Creating has replaced synthesizing.  Creating new knowledge is the ultimate objective.
  • 9. Putting it all together After the lecture the student will distinguish academic scholarship from non-academic scholarship. Lesson: PowerPoint defining academic scholarship, identifying authors of academic scholarship, and going over the sections of an academic article. Assessment: Show the covers and citations to a popular magazine piece and a journal article. Students distinguish one from the other using clicker or clicker app.
  • 10. Evaluating your current learning objectives Group exercise
  • 11. Evaluating your current learning objectives The student will be able to understand the information cycle.
  • 12. Evaluating your current learning objectives The student will be able to understand the information cycle. What’s the verb here? Using the two handouts can you come up with a more descriptive verb?
  • 13. Evaluating your current learning objectives Work on finding a good verb for your learning objective.
  • 14. ACRL Info. Lit. Standards  Determine the extent of information needed  Access the needed information effectively and efficiently  Evaluate information and its sources critically  Incorporate selected information into one’s knowledge base  Use information effectively to accomplish a specific purpose  Understand the economic, legal, and social issues surrounding the use of information, and access and use information ethically and legally
  • 15. ACRL Info. Lit. Standards Group Exercise
  • 16. ACRL Info. Lit. Standards The student will create a search strategy.
  • 17. ACRL Info. Lit. Standards The student will create a search strategy. Standard 2: Access the needed information effectively and efficiently. Can you use a more descriptive verb that aligns with this ACRL standard?
  • 18. ACRL Info. Lit. Standards Can you identify a learning objective that needs work aligning with ACRL Info. Lit. Standards?
  • 19. ABCD Method  A=Audience (student)  B=Behavior w/action verb  C=Condition ◦ after attending a lecture. . . . ◦ following review of a demonstration. . . . ◦ given a case study. . . . ◦ after completing the assignment. . . . ◦ given a specific instrument. . .  D=Degree ◦ How well the learner must perform (can be omitted if there is no deviation from normal protocol)
  • 20. ABCD Method  Order ◦ Condition ◦ Audience ◦ Behavior w/action verb ◦ D (if necessary)  Within a given time frame  Within a give number of tries  Criteria set by instructor  Tense is always future (e.g. will)
  • 21. ABCD Method Group Exercise
  • 22. ABCD Method The student will construct a search strategy.
  • 23. ABCD Method The student will construct a search strategy. Use the ABCD method to create a more measureable learning objective.
  • 24. ABCD Method Use the ABCD method to make your learning objective more measureable.
  • 25. Lesson Plans  What will you need to cover in order for the student to be able to do what you want them to do?  What is the most effective way to get your lesson across? ◦ Demonstration? ◦ Lecture? ◦ Hands-on? ◦ Flipped?  What materials will you need to create? ◦ Search examples for a demo? ◦ PowerPoint or Prezi? ◦ Checklist or worksheet? ◦ Video or PowerPoint with audio?
  • 26. Lesson Plans Create an outline for a lesson that meets your learning objective?  Delivery method  Resources needed
  • 27. Assessment Some of the more common assessments are: ◦ Completed handout ◦ Post-survey ◦ Quiz ◦ Response paper ◦ Presentation/demonstration ◦ Bibliography ◦ Faculty feedback
  • 28. Assessment How will you assess the learning objective has been met?
  • 29. Resources  Writing Instruction Objectives by Kathy Waller, http://www.naacls.org/docs/announcement/wr iting-objectives.pdf  Bloom’s Taxonomy of Measureable Verbs by Jerry Dugan, http://www.taasa.org/wp- content/uploads/2012/04/Working-on-the- Wow-Side-Handout-31.pdf  ASSURE model for designing instruction by Jerry Dugan, http://taasa.org/wp- content/uploads/2012/04/Working-on-the- Wow-Side-Handout-11.pdf  Bloomin’ Apps by Kathy Schrock, http://www.schrockguide.net/bloomin- apps.html