Aligning Learning Activities and Assessments to Course Objectives

Aligning Learning Activities and Assessments to Course Objectives

All learning activities and assessments should align to course learning objectives. Without this alignment, we risk assigning tasks unrelated to the course or set course objectives without ways to support or measure them. Ensuring alignment addresses both issues.

“Learning Activity” refers to an activity that supports student learning. Examples include lectures, discussions, readings, simulations, debates, role-playing, and others. “Assessment” refers to a tool or method used to evaluate, measure, and document the learning process. Examples include exams, quizzes, projects, papers, presentations, portfolios, and others. Proper alignment means that each course learning objective in a course has one or more learning activities and assessments aligned to it.

Using a learning taxonomy (see: Writing Course Learning Objectives) helps faculty identity appropriate assessments. For example, course learning objectives written at the “Apply” level of Bloom’s taxonomy would benefit with assessments like Simulations, Lab Experiments, and Clinical Work, among others.

Action Verbs for “Apply” (Bloom’s Level 3Assessments
ApplyProduceDevelopLab Experiment
CalculateChartChangeClinical Work
RelateModifyExplainRole Play

For assistance, please reach out to Jonathan Cisco, Director of Educational Assessment.

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