Listing course goals and objectives in a syllabus is the clearest way to communicate course expectations to students.

Listing course goals and objectives in a syllabus is the clearest way to communicate course expectations to students. Well-written goals and objectives tell students what is to be learned, and what behaviors will be expected of them and graded. Goals • Goals are broad, generalized statements about what is to be learned. Goals are a target to be reached. • Goals loosely define what is to be learned, but are too broad and “fuzzy” for designing assessment. o Example: Students will learn proper grammar and spelling. In order to better describe what kind of work is expected in the course and to more easily design assessment, more specific statements of what the learner must “do” are desirable. That’s where objectives come in. Objectives • Instructional objectives are specific, measurable, short-term, observable student behaviors. • Objectives lead to easier assessment. • Objectives are tools to ensure students reach course goals. • Objectives should target four areas: o Audience o Behavior o Condition o Degree • Some words to avoid when writing objectives: know, understand, appreciate, aware, familiar. • Examples of Objectives: o On all written exams and assignments [condition], students [audience] will use correct grammar and spelling [degree & behavior]. o Students [audience] will walk [behavior] the entire length [condition] of a balance beam, set to standard height, without falling off within a 15 second time frame [degree]. o Students [audience] will correctly [degree] write and balance organic chemistry equations [behavior] using chemical principles [condition].

This link to this website can also be helpful to answer these questions

http://assessmentcommons.org/

  1. What are “learning outcomes?”
  2. Which of the four learning outcomes for this course was the easiest to master?
  3. Which one was the most challenging?