Education Resources curriculum series: Choosing the right learning outcomes

Education Resources and the Office of Faculty Affairs are happy to offer a new series of Evidence-Based Teaching events starting in September.

On Tuesday, Sept. 24, 2019, from noon to 1 p.m., Associate Dean for Teaching & Learning Richard Van Eck, Ph.D., will give a presentation titled “Choosing the Right Learning Outcomes.” The talk, which includes free lunch, will be held in SMHS Room W203 and streamed live and recorded for later viewing.

The key to designing an effective curriculum lies in three simple concepts: 1) outcomes, 2) objectives, and 3) assessment. Together, these items have a larger impact on curriculum success than teaching quality. That’s why they should be the first step in creating or revising any curriculum, whether a single course or an entire program. Still, many educators don’t know what they are or how to use them.

Dr. Van Eck’s talk will be the first in a series of workshops on these foundational curriculum design concepts.

In this first workshop you will learn how (and why!) to classify learning outcomes as intellectual skills, cognitive strategies, attitudes, verbal information, and motor skills, and how doing so ensures effective learning for your students before you even begin thinking about textbooks or active learning! Classifying outcomes prevents critical errors that can derail your instruction before it even begins.

In the second workshop in this series, “Generating Measurable, Performance-Based Objectives” (Oct. 22), you’ll learn how to turn your learning outcomes into measurable, performance-based objectives. In the third and final workshop in this series, “Designing Effective Assessment” (early 2020), you’ll learn how to select appropriate assessment strategies for different objectives and learning outcomes.

Bring your course syllabi and/or program goals and objectives; we’ll provide examples but applying what we discuss to your own curriculum is the best way to learn!

A light lunch will be offered for on-site attendees (of course, you are also welcome to bring your own lunch). Please RSVP by Sept. 16 to help us ensure we have enough for everyone.

This workshop is part of the Evidence-Based Teaching (EBT) series hosted by Education Resources and the Office of Education and Faculty Affairs. This series, held every fourth Tuesday of the month, showcases topics of interest to the medical and health education community and is free and open to anyone at UND. Previous EBT sessions can be streamed from our website.

If you have any questions, would like more information, or would like to suggest a future meeting topic, please contact Adrienne Salentiny at