Charles Sturt University
Charles Sturt University

Graduate Learning Outcomes and Assessment Design

Graduate learning outcomes each have a set of knowledge, skills and application opportunities for the knowledge and skills which are usually demonstrated through assessment across a course. In order to know where graduate learning outcomes can be demonstrated in subjects and across courses, assessment needs to be analysed and mapped in existing subjects or to be planned and mapped across a course for a course design or review.

Mapping the graduate learning outcomes is a process where each assessment task is analysed to determine where students can demonstrate knowledge, skills and/or application of graduate learning outcomes. The following image shows the spread of each of the graduate learning outcomes identified by a different colour across the assessments for each subject in a course, and showing course teams where improvements can be made.

mapping graph

1 Mapping the Graduate Learning Outcomes for a course, Murdoch, D 2015

By the end of the course, graduates should be able to show how the knowledge and skills of each outcome are demonstrated in practice. Preferably, each subsequent year level of the degree should be able to show development of the skills and knowledge to the final year capacity of the graduate ready for professional practice. For example, developing academic literacies would be expected at a much lower level in a first year student than in a third year student; research and information literacies skills could start with developing guided research and basic steps in gathering and organising information in early years of the degree and developing these skills throughout the degree; international influences could developed through introductory sessions in first year and culminate in an international experience in the final year.

Graduate learning outcomes can be explicitly assessed in tasks and marking rubrics can incorporate the specific elements required by each outcome. Course design should incorporate graduate learning outcomes across the course and the assessment in the subjects that have had the outcomes incorporated should reflect the skills, knowledge and application of those designed in the subject. Example rubrics for graduate learning outcomes can be found on pages introducing each outcome. Click the links below for more information.

Information about each of the Graduate Learning outcomes and how you can integrate and assess them can be found from the links below:

The Graduate Learning Outcomes Support Site

The home page for the Graduate Learning Outcomes Support Site provides an introduction to the GLOs at Charles Sturt University.

CSU Graduates are professionals who:

Demonstrate the literacy and numeracy skills necessary to understand and interpret information and communicate according to the context

Demonstrate capability as inquirers to locate, evaluate, manage, and use information and research to develop and guide their own knowledge, learning, and practice

Critically harness digital literacy for professional practice and research and demonstrate digital citizenship in online learning, professional and social communities

Exhibit ethical decision making and reasoning to identify creative solutions to ethical problems

Demonstrate knowledge, capabilities, practices, attitudes, ethics and dispositions of their discipline or profession.

Critically appraise and continue to develop personal and professional capabilities

CSU Graduates are agents of change who:

Practise in ways that show a commitment to social justice and the processes of reconciliation based on understanding the culture, experiences, histories and contemporary issues of Indigenous Australian communities

Use their understanding of diversity and the 'common good' to work constructively, respectfully and effectively with local and global communities and workplaces

Engage with ethical and sustainable practices that meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs and those of the environment