Backward Design Step 1: Identify Situational Factors

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Identify the situational factors that may impact your course design


Whether designing a new course or redesigning an existing course, the first step is to identify and review the situational factors that affect major design components. Fink identifies these components as learning goals, feedback/assessment, and teaching/learning activities. If situational factors are not taken into account while developing these components, you run the risk of developing a course that doesn’t work for the students, doesn’t meet institutional goals, and doesn’t achieve the course outcomes. Fink identifies the following situational factors to consider.

Specific Course Content

External Expectations

Subject Nature

Instructor Characteristics

Learning Characteristics

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