Teaching and Learning for Social Impact

How: Course Design for Social Impact

In this section you will focus on integrating your educational purpose with your courses through a process of backwards design while connecting to specific pedagogies. This will allow you to design for significant learning and social impact. Too often, especially when we are called on to change the modality or the way we teach, we focus on the technology that we think will help us achieve our goals. While these tools are important, technology shouldn’t be the first thing we consider when course planning. If we center our educational purpose, we can then make decisions about our learning goals, content, teaching, and technology that will better serve our course.
Every Decision you make in designing your online course should extend from the learning objectives you have designed for your course. Develop those objectives first, and then figure out which technological tools will help you and your students meet them. -- Flower Darby, Small Teaching.

Designing with intention by centering our educational purpose is freeing because we don't have to learn about every single pedagogy or every single tech tool, and we don't have to cover all of the content we think we need to cover. We can choose the things that serve us, and leave that which does not. We get down to essentials. Wiggins and McTighe would call this getting down to the enduring understandings and essential questions, things which we want students to remember and to be able to know and do years after they are finished with their education. By starting at the end, and working backwards, we can design a course that produces transferable knowledge and understanding through inquiry and application.

What you’ll need as you work through this section:

What you'll learn about in this section:

Contents of this path: