Learning Outcomes

Learning Outcomes outline what students will know and be able to do as a result of engaging in the learning process.  Learning outcomes represent statements of achievement expressed from the learner’s point of view.

The instructor point of view:

  • The process of developing learning outcomes itself offers an opportunity for reflection on the content of the course in the context of its potential applications. Developing learning outcomes means that the context of the learning will always be emphasized, and courses focus on the knowledge and skills that will be most valuable to the student now and in the future.
  • Learning outcomes point to useful methods of assessment.
  • Learning outcomes allow instructors to set the standards by which the success of the course will be evaluated.

Source: What Are Learning Outcomes?, University of Toronto, Centre for Teaching Support & Innovation

The learner point of view:

A Learning Outcome (LO) is a measurable, observable, and specific statement that clearly indicates what a student should know and be able to do as a result of learning.

Well-written learning outcomes involve the following parts:

  •   Action verb.
  •   Subject content.
  •   Level of achievement.
  •   Condition of performance (if applicable)

Source: How to Write Course Learning Outcomes | Mohawk College

Revised Bloom’s Taxonomy Action Verbs

Learning outcomes are used for each lesson, lecture, lab or tutorial. Learning outcomes also articulate course goals and are aligned with program learning outcomes or competencis and graduate attributes.

Use the following verbs to aid with writing learning outcomes for your course.

Remember Choose, Define, Find, How, Label, List, Match, Name, Omit, Recall, Relate, Select, Show, Spell, Tell, What, When, Where, Which, Who, Why
Understand Classify, Compare, Contrast, Demonstrate, Explain, Extend, Illustrate, Infer, Interpret, Outline, Relate, Rephrase, Show, Summarize, Translate
Apply Apply, Build, Choose, Construct, Develop, Experiment with, Identify, Interview, Make use of, Model, Organize, Plan, Select, Solve, Utilize
Analyze Analyze, Assume, Categorize, Classify, Compare, Conclusion, Contrast, Discover, Dissect, Distinguish, Divide, Examine, Function, Inference, Inspect, List, Motive, Relationships, Simplify, Survey, Take part in, Test for, Theme
Evaluate Agree, Appraise, Assess, Award, Choose, Compare, Conclude, Criteria, Criticize, Decide, Deduct, Defend, Determine, Disprove, Estimate, Evaluate, Explain, Importance, Influence, Interpret, Judge, Justify, Mark, Measure, Opinion, Perceive, Prioritize, Prove, Rate, Recommend, Rule on, Select, Support, Value
Create Adapt, Build, Change, Choose, Combine, Compile, Compose, Construct, Create, Delete, Design, Develop, Discuss, Elaborate, Estimate, Formulate, Happen, Imagine, Improve, Invent, Make up, Maximize, Minimize, Modify, Original, Originate, Plan, Predict, Propose, Solution, Solve, Suppose, Test, Theory

Anderson, L.W., & Krathwohl, D.R.(2001). A taxonomy for learning, teaching, and assessing, Abridged Edition. Boston, MA: Allyn and Bacon.