Curriculum mapping is the process of aligning program learning outcomes with courses and other learning experiences to ensure that students have the opportunity to achieve all desired outcomes of a program throughout their tenure at BCC. Mapping helps isolate gaps in learning experiences that can be used to identify where students may have limited opportunities to transfer, build upon, or apply learning. According to Maki (2004), maps of curriculum and the co-curriculum serve three main purposes:

  • Stimulate discussions about and critical reflection on collective learning priorities
  • Illustrate how well collective expectations match with education practices that foster these priorities
  • Provide a visual representation of students’ contexts for learning that may assist later on in interpreting assessment results.

Many programs are already familiar with the concept of mapping. For example, when a new course is submitted for inclusion into CUNY Pathways curriculum, a rationale must be provided as to how the course will align with and help students achieve the learning outcomes of Pathway’s “required” or “flexible” cores.  This same concept applies to a program’s curriculum, whereby PLOs are aligned with a program’s courses. Often, program faculty construct a grid consisting of learning outcomes on the x-axis and courses and co-curricular opportunities along the y-axis; where the outcomes and courses intersect, a checkmark or another identifier is applied to denote that the SLO is addressed here. Figure 1 is an example of a simple curriculum map that visualized the intersection between outcomes and courses.

Figure 1. Simple Curriculum Map

  SLO 1 SLO 2 SLO 3 SLO 4 SLO 5
ENG 101 X   X    
ENG 102 X X      
ENG 110   X   X X
ENG 111   X X   X
ENG 201     X X  
ENG 202       X X

Figure 2 presents a more complex map, where outcomes are aligned with general education competencies.  In this case, the intersection between competencies and courses is denoted by scales to indicate whether the competency is: I=Introduced, D=Developed, or R=Reinforced.

Figure 2. Detailed Curriculum Map



Written Communication Critical Thinking Quantitative Reasoning Information Literacy
ENG 110 I I      
ENG 111   D      
MTH 21       I  
MTH 23       D  
COMM 11 I, D        
POL 51         R

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