Western Technical College
Western Technical College uses the program design file, course outcome summary, syllabus, learning plan, and performance assessment task functions in WIDS. In addition, the TSA Summary on the program page has been valuable is placing TSA information at faculty fingertips for more consistency in communication of expectations to students.
Because the college requires syllabus generation through WIDS, all faculty use the software. Syllabi are easily generated from official course outcome summaries. Western had veteran and new faculty express appreciation for the implementation of the syllabus generation feature. For many, it was a time-saver and it pairs nicely with Blackboard.
The college is continuing the development of “Master Courses” whereby faculty in high volume blended or online courses are creating learning plans and performance assessment tasks with scoring guides. These learning plans become the basis for standard Blackboard shells for the courses. Each teacher who teaches the course will teach from the Master Course, ensuring a consistent learning experience from one instructor to another. This is especially important when adjunct teach the courses.
Brandee Ortery, Dean of Learning in the Academic Excellence and Development division, says “New and adjunct faculty appreciate the roadmap that a Course Outcome Summary generated from WIDS provides. It has helped us move curriculum from teaching from the text book to teaching from the Course Outcome Summary. It has also helped us emphasize that mastery of competencies and performance of skills are what employers are looking for in the people they hire.”
A recent refresh of Western’s Core Abilities, now titled SuccessAbilities has caused faculty to once again look closely at their program outcomes and re-align different components of their curriculum with instruction and assessment in the classroom. WIDS has been instrumental in providing the framework and consistency for that work.