WRITING COURSE LEARNING OUTCOMES

Course learning outcomes specify both an observable behavior and the object of that behavior.
For example: Students will be able to write a research paper.
In addition, the criterion could also be specified: Students will be able to write a research paper in the
appropriate scientific style.
Optionally, the condition under which the behavior occurs can be specified: At the end of their field
research, students will be able to write a research paper in the appropriate scientific style.
Note that the verb you choose will help you focus on what you assess. For example: Students will be able
to do research.
The verb do is vague. Do you mean identify an appropriate research question, review the literature,
establish hypotheses, use research technology, collect data, analyze data, interpret results, draw
conclusions, recommend further research, or all of those? Each of the verbs in those statements is
appropriately specific.

More examples: The more specific example is easier to assess than the broad example (this is specific in
terms of the learning ability or the action verb not content):
Broad: Students will demonstrate knowledge of the history, literature and function of the theatre,
including works from various periods and cultures.
More specific: Students will be able to explain the theoretical bases of various dramatic genres and
illustrate them with examples from plays of different eras.
Even more specific, specifying the conditions: During the senior dramatic literature course, the students
will be able to explain the theoretical bases of various dramatic genres and illustrate them with examples
from plays of different eras.
Broad: The student will be able to discuss philosophical questions.
More specific: The student is able to develop relevant examples and to express the significance of
philosophical questions.
Broad: Students will be able to think in an interdisciplinary manner.
More specific: Asked to solve a problem in the student’s field, the student will be able to draw from
theories, principles, and/or knowledge from other disciplines to help solve the problem.
Broad: Students will understand how to use technology effectively.
More specific: Each student will be able to use word processing, spreadsheets, databases, and
presentation graphics in preparing their final research project and report.

2. equilibrium. and friction. They reflect what students should be able to do after a course ends. They use verbs that indicate how the student work can be observed. kinematics.Summary of assessable learning outcomes: 1. They usually can be assessed in more than one way. . not simply what they do during the course. Some verbs are not clear or easily measurable and should be avoided when developing student learning outcomes. They focus on what the student should do. They can be understood by someone outside the discipline. 5. Examples of these problem verbs would include: understand. know. 4. 3. At the completion of the course a student will be able to analyze forces acting on rigid bodies by applications of principles of statics and dynamics. grasp or comprehend. not what the instructor teaches. Example on Writing Learning Outcomes The following formula may be helpful in developing learning outcomes: For example. clear and measurable outcomes for engineering mechanics course might say: Student will   Expected Performance Learning Outcome At the completion of the course a student will be able to describe basic principles of forces.