Backward Design Model Stages: Collapse all | Expand all
Stage 1: Identifying Desired Results
In other instructional design models this is known as defining goals and objectives, Wiggins and McTighe (1998) ask instructors to consider not only the course of goals and objectives, but learning that should endure over the long term. This is referred to as the “enduring understanding. The “enduring understanding” is not just material worth covering, but includes the following elements:
- Enduring value beyond the classroom
- Resides at the heart of the discipline
- Requires uncover of abstract or often misunderstood ideas
- Offers the potential for engaging students
“Backward” design uses a question format rather than measurable objectives. By answering key questions, students deepen their learning about content and experience an enduring understanding. The teacher sets the evidence that will be used to determine that the students have understood the content.
These questions focus on the following:
- To what extent does the idea, topic, or process reside at the heart of the discipline?
- What questions point toward the big ideas and understanding?
- What arguable questions deepen inquiry and discussion?
- What questions provide a broader intellectual focus, hence purpose, to the work?
Stage 2: Determine what constitutes acceptable evidence of competency in the outcomes and results (assessments).
This stage of the design process is to define what forms of assessments will demonstrate that the student acquired the knowledge, understanding and skill to answer the questions.
- Performance task – the performance task is as the heart of learning. A performance task is meant to be a real world challenge in the thoughtful and effective use of knowledge and skill and authentic test of understanding, in content.
- Criteria Referenced Assessment (quizzes, test, prompts)- These provide instructor and the student with feedback on how well the facts and concepts are being understood.
- Unprompted Assessments and Self-Assessments- observations and dialogue.
Stage 3: Plan Learning and Instruction
In this stage it is determined what sequence of teaching and learning will equip students to develop and demonstrate the desired understanding for students to be considered successful.
Some questions teachers should ask at this stage are:
What knowledge and skills will students need to understand and perform to attain success with the course?
What activities will enable students to master the requisite knowledge and skills?
What must a teacher teach and how should the teacher teach it in order for students to become knowledgeable and skillful in the identified content realm?
What material must be employed to foster student success in the curriculum in question?
Does the overall design of this course or unit meet the principles of curriculum development?