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Concept mapping and constructive alignment

Having explored and practised session design, we will now move to designing the content of the overall CDL programme. It is here that concept mapping can prove helpful in sorting and sifting the many possible topics that could be covered.

Concept mapping in brief

Amundsen, Weston and McCalpine (2008) propose a simple 6 step process. It is argued that concept mapping provides a method of course design through which the course is viewed as an integrated whole. Concept mapping is proposed as a way of establishing relationships between concepts and surfacing tacit views about course content.

You are now invited to read Amundsen et al.'s (2008) article from Studies in Higher Education in the module pack. The appendix to the article contains a summary of their approach and it is worth reading this first before attempting the whole piece.

Integrating theory and practice
You are advised to 'concept map' your intended CDL programme. When developing a series of sessions, concept mapping can help manage and stage the content. We practice this during the workshop.

Further examples
Here are two worked examples developed by the course team and associates. The first relates to the career studies module discussed earlier in Section 4. The second is a more detailed example and relates to the design of a work experience module.
Career studies module (Powerpoint Presentation) (not narrated)
Work experience module (PDF Document) (especially pages 4 and 35-37)

Workshop follow-up
Four word documents are provided in order to further develop your concept maps:
Copy of the handout on concept mapping from the workshop (Word Document)
Concept map: career development theories (Word Document)
Concept map: career management styles (Word Document)
Concept map: career types (Word Document)

Constructive alignment in brief

Once the course outline begins to take shape, it can then be useful to look at the overall course design using Biggs' work on constructive alignment (1996). Biggs argues we should take a coherent and integrated approach to aims, learning outcomes, curriculum, teaching activities and assessment.

Please now read Biggs (1996) on constructive alignment from the reading pack. Note his comments on the 'total teaching system' (p.354) and the alignment of all components in this system to the learning outcomes (p.360).