Preparing a Course Blueprint with sub-topics, assessments, potential resources, and other identified information is useful in the early stages of course planning. It allows the design team and the academic department to have a clear idea of what the final course will be like. Later, it can also serve as the basis for the syllabus for the course.
There are a number of working parts involved in planning an online course, so organizing your thoughts in one central place can be a very valuable activity. It may also help you to brainstorm ideas and ensure that you don't forget about anything important once you begin writing your content.
We recommend organizing the content into 12 lessons or modules, even during the 15-week fall and spring semesters. Though you should still include content for 15 weeks of work, the 12-lesson structure allows for extra flexibility in case you have exams, travel, etc. The 12-lesson structure also allows courses to be taught in the summer without the need for redesigning and reworking content. Each lesson (main topic) is then broken into relevant sections or sub-topics to cover necessary content. Mid-terms and Finals, or stages in a semester-long project can be scheduled within or between Lessons. After completing the Course Blueprint, you should have all of the information that you need to create your course syllabus.
The following table will help ensure that everything you incorporate into the course is assessed appropriately. Use the downloadable version, which is an Excel spreadsheet and contains more detail.
|Lesson # and Title||Learning Objectives (What will students be able to do by the end of the lesson?)||Level of Objective||Description of the Assessment Related to Objectives (Quiz, Exam, Blog Post, Lab, etc.)||Grade Category (Participation, Quizzes, Exams, None)||Lesson Topics||Multimedia Needs||Text Chapter and/or External Reading/Links|
The following links provide examples of well-constructed blueprints: