Learning Outcomes

Learning outcomes are direct statements that describe the essential knowledge and abilities that students should possess, and the depth of learning that is expected upon completion of a course or program. Students benefit from clearly articulated and assessed course-level learning outcomes, which are also the foundation for an effectively aligned and integrated curriculum.


CTL is available to consult with individual instructors who wish to write/review their course learning outcomes.

Should a department of faculty wish to review their curriculum for alignment and coherence, sequencing and continuity of student learning outcomes across a program and the like, CTL’s faculty and staff are able to provide counsel to guide the process.


Invited Workshops

In addition to our regular CTL workshops (see Events), we are available to facilitate workshops for groups of instructors in a program or unit who are writing/reviewing learning outcomes.

Request a workshop or consultation service by filling out CTL's Request for Consultation Service Form.



A Guide to Learning Outcomes at the University of Alberta
This flexible guide is designed to assist instructors and programs in writing effective learning outcomes. For each section, you can (a) read a scenario and learn from others' experiences; and (b) get answers to key questions, and suggestions to consider for your own context and needs.

Section 1. Definitions and Considerations (PDF)
  • Get an introduction to learning outcomes; learning what they are, and why and when you mights use them.
  • Consider learner needs and characteristics, course level, and program structure before writing learning outcomes.
Section 2. Writing Learning Outcomes (PDF)
  • Learn how to write learning outcomes well.
  • Write course and unit level learning outcomes starting with knowledge, skills, and attitudes.
Section 3. Making Learning Outcomes Matter: Designing and Revising Courses Using Learning Outcomes (PDF)
  • Revise or evaluate your course using learning outcomes.
  • Map assessment in a course.
Section 4. Program Level Outcomes (PDF)
  • Write program level outcomes.
  • Assess program level outcomes and create a curricular map.

Acknowledgements (PDF)

Glossary of Terms (PDF)

Bibliography (PDF)

Download the complete document here (PDF)

Conversations on Learning Outcomes - CTL workshop, August 17, 2017

Learning Outcomes Retreat May 2, 2017