Questions about "Outcomes-based" learning

Questions about “Outcomes-based” learning A comment in a forum on revising WSU’s General Education Program gives more context for challenges of our assessment work…

“My primary concern rests with the heavy emphasis on “outcomes based” learning.  First, I find it difficult to imagine teaching to outcomes as separate from teaching my content — I do not consider “content” and “outcomes” as discrete entities; rather, they overlap.  This overlap may partly be the reason for the thin and somewhat unconvincing literature on “outcomes based learning.” I would therefore like to see in this process a thorough and detailed analysis of the literature on “outcomes” vs content-based learning, followed by thoughtful discussion as to whether the need to focus our energies in a different direction is in fact warranted (and for what reasons).  Also, perhaps that same literature can provide guidance on how to create an outcomes driven learning environment while maintaining the spirit of the academic (as opposed to technocratically-oriented) enterprise.”


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