Creating a Syllabus: Steps #6 & 7- Create Assignments & Other Learning Activities

Step #6- Now it’s time to finally create the assignments and projects for the class that will give the students the skills that will make them competent, and thus enable them to achieve the learning outcomes.

As you devise your projects, keep in mind how much time students will realistically need to complete them. Allow for some “give time”. Inevitably, things either take more or less time to cover than expected, plus, you may miss a day due to illness or bad winter weather. Give yourself the freedom to make changes as the course progresses.

Step #7- Next, create in-class and homework activities and exercises to support the projects. Again, be realistic of how much work you can give students before overloading them.

Any activities should be in support of the project at hand. Journal or blogging activities can be used to deepen a competency, and can also be a place for brainstorming or gathering research materials for the project.

NOTE: New teachers tend to cram far too many projects and activities into their syllabi than experienced teachers do. Less can be more!

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This entry was posted in Creating a Syllabus, Preparing to Teach and tagged , , , by Jane Alden Stevens. Bookmark the permalink.

About Jane Alden Stevens

Jane Alden Stevens is a photographer and educator who is Professor Emeritus of Fine Arts at the University of Cincinnati. An active artist, Stevens has exhibited and published her work extensively both in the US and abroad. She is the author of “Tears of Stone: World War I Remembered” (2004). In the course of her teaching career, Stevens taught courses in film, photography, and professional practices for fine artists. Her interest in teaching practices was deepened when she started teaching the "Graduate Teaching Workshop", a required graduate level course for fine artists and art historians that prepares them to teach the courses they will later be assigned. She was also involved in the Preparing Future Faculty program at the University of Cincinnati, which prepares masters and doctoral students across all programs for teaching at the university level. She has conducted pedagogy workshops for a variety of universities, as well as participated in academic practicum panels at educational conferences. The recipient of numerous teaching awards, Stevens was honored with the all-university Cohen Award for Excellence in University Teaching at the University of Cincinnati in 2002 and Professor of the Year honors in her college in 2011.

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