By Carolyn Hoessler
So what is “CAT” beyond our nickname for our Curriculum Alignment Tool? It is an online software for academic programs and instructors to fill in information about your courses, connect those courses within a program, and review what you are teaching your students.
Designed as one approach to gathering data about programs, CAT fits into the inventory stage of the curriculum renewal cycle (see Susan & Sheryl’s dynamic video or diagram ). Focusing on an instructor’s approach to their course, CAT asks about instructional strategies, assessment methods and timing, course outcomes and connection with program outcomes. CAT is particularly good at displaying trends and allowing for instructors to link parts of their course including outcomes and assessments.
Why use CAT? For instructors, this tool is designed to provide an opportunity for articulating their teaching strategies and goals, showing links between their goals and how they assess and meet program goals, reflecting on their strategies, and contributing information about their courses to their program curriculum renewal process.
From the prospective of programs, CAT provides an existing online tool designed for curriculum inventory that easily summarizes strategies and assessments across selected courses, shows relationship between courses and the program outcomes, and exports a more detailed set of data for further analysis. Depending on the goals of the curriculum renewal process, data can be entered in for a single year or tracked longitudinally when exploring change across offerings is desired.
For more information and resources see the CAT Website.