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Inclusive Teaching Guide: Learning Outcomes

Effective teaching is a dynamic, not static, process. Whether you have years of experience or are just beginning to teach, there is always room to expand your repertoire, explore a new approach, or reflect on an aspect of your practice.

Writing Learning Outcomes

After collaborating with faculty on shared goals, you can create specific learning outcomes, or objectives, for the class. This is a critical first step, as all other aspects of your class planning, from activities to assessment, should stem from your learning outcomes. 

To get started, ask yourself, what should students be able to do as a result of instruction? Try to be as clear and specific as you can. Keep in mind that effective learning outcomes are observable, measurable, and at an appropriate level. 

If you are having trouble articulating an outcome, consider using this formula from the ACRL Immersion program.

  • Verb/action phrase + "in order to" + why statement = learning outcome

Example: Students will be able to distinguish between scholarly and popular articles in order to critically evaluate sources.

Check out Bloom'sTaxonomy for lists of strong verbs that correlate to different cognitive domains and measurable objectives. 

Follow these links to read more on learning outcomes: