Curriculum: Course Planning Cards

What are they?

These cards were produced to support course planning activity in workshops or meetings. The format makes them portable and easy to use in a variety of contexts.

The cards cover teaching activities (things organised by the course team – orange cards), learning activities (things students do outside timetabled sessions – blue cards), assessment types (A4 cards) and the MMU employability and sustainability outcomes (green cards). In addition, there is a set of ‘wildcards’ which cover a range of inclusivity issues (pink cards) which are intended to promote discussion around curriculum planning for good student experience and reasonable adjustments.

The basic idea is to lay out the teaching activities in the intended sequence and then to add in the intended learning activities around them, to get a visual overview of how the course works and what students need to do to prepare for the different parts and whether they have enough time for this, and to check that the teaching activities lead up logically to assessment points.

Because the cards are easily moved around, they give teams a visual way of testing out different ways of delivering or assessing the course, or preparing students for different aspects. They are intended to stimulate discussion of a variety of curriculum-related issues.

How can the cards be used?

They can be used in a variety of ways; some suggestions might be:

  • By individuals planning a unit
  • By course teams planning a level (individual units can be laid out in parallel, highlighting issues such as assessment overlap or timetabling needs)
  • By course teams and student representatives reviewing a plan or doing initial planning to discuss ways of developing student engagement in the course
  • By course teams reviewing a plan with a view to checking its accessibility or employability features or thinking about timetabling (eg the feasibility of using block teaching on certain units, or exchanging sessions between units to accommodate a particular type of activity such as a visit or workshop day)
  • By course teams and Faculty SAS reviewing a plan with a view to checking the organisational requirements
  • By course teams and the library team reviewing a plan to identify appropriate points for library staff input
  • By course teams and the careers service reviewing a plan to identify appropriate points for input from the careers team, or to tie in with events planned across the faculty