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Course Reviewer’s Corner
by Royce Brown Assoc. AIA
Manager, Continuing Education Programs

March 26, 2013

ACTION speaks louder than WORDS?

Action speaks louder than words. A phrase I’m certain many of us has heard at various points of our lives. I believe the purpose was to get a person to mean what they say and hopefully follow through with it. There’s nothing worst then relying on a person’s word to find out that their actions never accompanied their intention. It’s like planning for a big move, weeks in advance you call some friends for a hand, you have all the boxes packed and the rental truck is parked outside but your moving crew never shows up as promised. It’s like being in junior high school and you ask your older sibling to pick you up after practice at 4pm and they arrive at 7pm.

The same can be said when drafting learning objectives for a course. Keep in mind this is not an exercise in building overly elaborated points with empty ideas and purpose. However, its intent is to be clear and concise in what participants will learn. By definition, Learning Objectives are a written indication of the anticipated result, using measurable or observable verbs. In our early developmental stages we were taught, verbs are simply action words.

In last month’s webinar, In the Mind of the Reviewer, I mentioned some useful verbs that may be helpful when writing Learning Objectives (listed below).

Learning Objectives shape a learning event and help ensure its success. They guide the learner and help him or her focus and set priorities. At the end of a program an attendee should walk away feeling like the information was useful enough that they can share, participate, instruct and confidently solve relevant problems. I believe we all delight in knowing that we can take action. There’s nothing more painful than sitting in an hour long presentation all to realize it was a waste of time. As Providers, let’s practice drafting learning objectives that will encourage ACTION rather than disappoint attendees with empty WORDS.


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