5 – Planning

Planning Your Course from Goals and Outcomes

About this chapter

Chapter 5, Planning Your Course from Goals and Outcomes helps teachers set a solid foundation for a learning-centered blended course. High-level course goals are supported by specific learning outcomes that lead to blended assessments and activities.

From the guide…

To Do

Many chapters of this guide feature a “to do” item to help you focus your own blended course design:

By the end of this chapter your course design map should include a brief description of the course, along with a listing of the course’s broad goals, organized into lessons or units. You will then select one of those lessons to design as a prototype, and write the specific learning outcomes that relate to the lesson goal(s).

Reflection: Imagine the Successful Learner

Some chapters of this guide feature a “reflection” task to activate your background experience to inform your blended course design:

What does a successful student in your course look like when the course is over? What do they know? What do they care about? How do they behave? What can they perform? To what level? In what situations?

Take some time to write down a description of your students before and after they finish the course. Also imagine how their experience in your course affects them five years from now. This kind of visualization can guide you during the blended design process toward engaging students’ hearts and minds, and in providing activities and feedback that address their needs.

Each time you finish teaching your blended course, the assessments that you’ve used should provide a clear picture of each student and how well they match this vision. If that’s not the case, perhaps your assessments aren’t measuring the right things!


This figure may help you visualize how a single course may consist of large goals which are each supported by more granular outcomes:


References & Readings

Berliner, D. (1990). What’s all the fuss about instructional time? In The nature of time in schools: Theoretical concepts, practitioner perceptions (pp. 3–35). New York and London: Teachers College Press.

Fink, D. L. (2003). Creating significant learning experiences: An integrated approach to designing college courses. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass. Heer, R. A model of learning objectives—based on A taxonomy for learning, teaching, and assessing: A revision of Bloom’s Taxonomy of educational objectives. Center for Excellence in Learning and Teaching, Iowa State University. Retrieved from www.celt.iastate.edu/teaching/RevisedBlooms1.html.

Krathwohl, D. R. (2002). A revision of Bloom’s taxonomy: An overview. Theory into Practice, 41(4), 212–218.

Skibba, K. A. (2006). A cross-case analysis of how faculty connect learning in a hybrid course. In Proceedings of 47th Annual Adult Education Research Conference (pp. 346–352).

Willingham, D. T. (2009). Why don’t students like school? A cognitive scientist answers questions about how the mind works and what it means for your classroom. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.