The curriculum map is a matrix of the program student learning outcomes mapped to the designed curriculum. If a course or program requirement is linked to an outcome in a substantive way, the map indicate the way the knowledge, skills, and/or attitudes relevant to an outcome is addressed. All required courses should support one or more program outcomes in some way. On the map, include only courses with key or signature assignments that allow faculty to assess progress of an outcome across a representative sample of students in the program.
To indicate where and how program outcomes are addressed within the curriculum, the map should indicate whether a course or program requirement:
- Introduces: (I) a concept relevant to the program outcome; learning activities focus on basic knowledge and skills that support the learning outcome. Often, several courses will introduce an outcome, provide practice, and scaffolding achievement. Alternately, a course may be designed primarily to introduce one outcome.
- Reinforces: (R) or strengthens the development of the knowledge and skills to achieve the program outcomes that are further along in the curriculum. Relevant foundational knowledge has been previously introduced.
- Emphasizes: (E) opportunities for the student to integrate the knowledge, skills and attitudes of the outcome, often at the end of a program. Instructional and learning activities allow for demonstrating achievement of the outcome in multiple contexts and at multiple levels of complexity. The outcome has been previously introduced and reinforced in prior requirements through various activities and opportunities.
Working on a curriculum map can support continuous program improvement when we:
- identify where outcomes are covered in a curriculum,
- identify potential gaps in the curriculum (where a course is not addressing any outcome, or an outcome is not developed by any courses within the curriculum),
- identify whether any outcomes need modification,
- identify best opportunities for assessment, and/or
- start a discussion of potential changes necessary within the curriculum.
To complete a curriculum map for your program, use the template found here.