Writing and assessing unit level learning outcomes

Learning Outcomes and Assessment

Before we go any further let's look again at, and re-emphasise, the relationship between learning outcomes and assessment.  There are a great many definitions of both learning outcomes and assessment.  In the context of the MMU curriculum frameworks they might be best summarised as follows:

What is a learning outcome?

The essential measurable learning or behaviour demonstrated by a student after a specific period of study

What is assessment?

The process by which you can measure the extent to which a student can demonstrate specific learning outcomes

These two definitions demonstrate the direct relationship and importance of learning outcomes to assessment.  This relationship means that it is very important to write learning outcomes that not only make it clear to students what it is they are expected to do but are also measurable in relation to the assessment task we set. It is not an easy task to write learning outcomes to serve both these purposes. 

 

next: Aims versus learning outcomes? »