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Course Design Blueprint

Subject and Wider attributes

Each course will have a number of subject specific skills and attributes that are integral to the subject and which students will need to develop proficiency in order to progress and achieve.  These will need to be placed into the curriculum in a manner that enables student engagement with both learning activities and assessments. 

In the Skills and Knowledge section of this Blueprint we explore the more generic skills and attributes that are associated with higher education achievement including academic and employability skills and attributes.  Course teams will need to ensure that the skills and attributes explored there are also mapped into the student's planned learning experience, enabling students to learn, practice and develop personal confidence in their ability to employ each of them.

Some principles for in-course skill and attribute development

  1. Each skill needs to be introduced explicitly within the curriculum.  This might be as a specific part of the delivered curriculum, or through direct reference to centrally provided content and learning activity.
  2. It is essential that skills are introduced in context so that their application to pertinent scenarios or in resolving authentic problems grounds and enriches the students' understanding of their purpose and effective use.
  3. All skill delivery should ensure students are equipped to make informed and critical judgements on their suitability and applicability within a range of contexts and situations.
  4. Students should be able to access further support to enable them to develop and refine their skill development beyond the basic level of application.
  5. Students need to be equipped to be able to make effective judgements on their ability to apply each skill.  The course should provide criteria or explanations of how the quality of skill application might be judged, and give students opportunities to reflect on, and apply judgment to, their own and others' skill application and have their judgements validated and challenged as appropriate.
  6. For attributes such as resilience, creativity and collaborative, course teams should recognise the time that these need to evolve, and the prompts that students need to help them recognise this development, and to identify opportunities for further development.
  7. Where skills are to be employed in summative assessment, this should be preceded with sufficient learning activity and formative opportunities to enable the students to have gained confidence in their abilities.