There are many benefits of creating a curriculum map. One is that it helps you to gain a better understanding of the course and what you will be learning from it. This map indicates how much time is devoted to each unit and the methods by which information will be conveyed to the learner. It also provides an outline for how this course ties in with other courses. Lastly, it allows teachers to have the freedom to explore the connections between everything else that they teach.
What is a curriculum?
The word “curriculum” is derived from the Latin noun form of “course”, itself an adjective meaning “running”. This indicates the main sense in which the word was originally used; a course of study.
A curriculum, therefore, is:
An organised body of knowledge that provides instruction or training in a particular subject.
As a tool for teachers, curriculum mapping can be used to organise content, facilitate discussion and communication, teaching methodologies of teaching (including technology), and more. As such, curriculum mapping is applicable to all education and training organisations from early years through to university.
A great way to create a curriculum map is to use a spreadsheet or a tool like Stedfast These allow for exploration without having to do all of your calculations in your head, so you can focus on creating as complete and effective a map as possible.
Take data from the course syllabus, or have learners make similar maps to give you ideas of what they expect will be covered. Determine where certain topics might overlap with other courses. Try and incorporate their thoughts into your map so that the student feels more connected to what they’re learning in other courses. The more detailed a curriculum map is, the more students will feel like what they’re learning in your class is relevant to the rest of their lives.
A full curriculum map includes topics that are organised according to the four elements of the map: assessments, learning objectives, the physical layout of lessons and activities, and assessment objectives. In this way, a teacher will have the freedom to explore connections between everything that they teach.
A final note on creating a curriculum map: keep it up-to-date. You can change things as you go along if there are problems with your initial plan, and this allows you to influence and alter how a class goes as you learn more about how your students are progressing.