Integrated Aligned Course Design:
Assessing Student Learning Outcomes—Working Guide
This working guide was developed to assist you in the course design process. It parallels the information presented in the Assessing Outcomes section of the CTL Course Design Tutorial. Enter information about your course in the spaces below.
STEP 1: Align Outcomes and Assessment
Use the grid provided below to help you see both the alignment between outcomes and the weight (and, thus, importance) of each.
Example Grading GridGiven an environment issue, students. can specify disciplines needed to solve the problem / Students will be able to analyze the impact of environmental policies / Students will be able to effectively argue a position on current environmental issue / Given an environmental concern, students will be able to identify appropriate scientific strategy / Students will believe that they can make an impact on environmental issues
(20%) / 10 / 10
Mock council meeting
(30%) / 10 / 20 / Ungraded. Student pre and post attitude survey to monitor
Letter to Congressman
(20%) / 10 / 10 / Ungraded. Student pre and post attitude survey to monitor
Grading Grid for Your Course
STEP 2: Check for Feasibility
When you are satisfied with the alignment of your outcomes and assessments, place your major tests and assignments into a blank course outline before you insert the weekly content. Be certain that you have a test or assignment well before the deadline for students to drop the course.
My Assessment Calendar
Week 8Week 15
Ask yourself: Is the workload I am planning for myself and my students reasonable? strategically placed? sustainable? Will students have time to recover from a low grade?
STEP 3: Create the grading portion of your syllabus
In addition to describing the assessment measures and their relative weights toward the grade on your syllabus, consider explicitly connecting the assessments to the desired student outcomes for the course. Consider providingadvice on how students can best prepare for your tests and assignments. What follows is an example:
The essay questions will ask youto think with the material--to compare, argue, conclude, and so on, going beyond what is spelled out in readings and lectures. In this way, the essay questions also perform an important teaching function in their own right. Since psychology is a science, the questions ask you to think scientifically. Therefore, statements of opinion are worth very little--whether or not they agree with mine--unless they are supported by valid arguments based where possible on rigorous evidence. This may sound formidable, but most students learn to do this well enough to be successful on these examinations. As you study, keep in the back of your mind questions such as, "How does the author know this is true?" "On the basis of what evidence does she disagree with So-and-so?" and so on.
- Eric Klinger, Psychology 3400 (Morris Campus)
Write the Grading Portion of Your Syllabus Here:
The following course design resources were referenced throughout the tutorial.
- Alternative Assessment Strategies
- General Steps in Test Construction
- Test Construction Grid
- University of Minnesota Syllabus Examples
- John Lowe, “Assessment that Promotes Learning”: