Great Scott!: Aligning Learning Outcomes with Assessments and Games with 1.21 Gigawatts of Engagement Power

Concurrent Session 6

Session Materials

Brief Abstract

In this interactive session, you will review writing measurable learning outcomes and explore gamification strategies that promote engagement and enable students to attain learning outcomes. Through innovative examples and audience participation, this session will enable and inspire you to create fun and engaging game-based assessments for any content.

Sponsored By


Amy Kennedy has over 15 years of experience in teaching, curriculum, assessment, and instructional design. As a former High School Science Instructor and Adjunct Science Faculty, her teaching experience includes both secondary and college level science courses in face to face, online, and blended formats. As a curriculum developer, she has led the design and development of K-12 science curriculum materials and assessments for a variety of organizations and education publishers including the Dayton Regional STEM center, McGraw Hill Education, and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing. As Science Curriculum and Assessment Specialist with the Ohio Department of Education, Amy led the development of Ohio’s science curriculum and technology enhanced computer-based science assessments as well as other state wide science education committees and initiatives. She served as the Assistant Director of the Ohio College Career Technical Education Programs at Sinclair and Cincinnati State Community Colleges leading the development and alignment of college and high school level career technical curriculum. As an instructional designer, Amy has led the design and development of interactive and engaging curriculum and online courses to meet academic and training needs. Her past instructional design work includes designing a variety of e-learning for corporate and academic audiences, including online and blended college courses, interactive high school science video lessons, and corporate e-learning training modules. In her current position, as Instructional Designer for the Galen College of Nursing, Amy has led the design, development, and project management of college level Arts and Sciences and Nursing courses. She works with faculty to manage project timelines, write learning outcomes, and apply instructional design principles to design and align e-learning interactive media, games, and assessments utilizing gamification and scenario based learning approaches. Amy has a B.S. in Biology from the University of Dayton, a M.S. in Environmental Science from Indiana University, a Life Science Teaching Certificate from the University of Dayton and a graduate level certificate in Instructional Design from the University of Wisconsin-Stout.
Denise Ruggio is an Instructional Designer at Galen College of Nursing with a specialty in visual design and media development. She has worked in higher education for over 20 years, teaching Graphic Design at the Bachelor's level. She has written and developed curriculum for both on ground and online courses such as Page Layout and Typography. Never shying away from a challenge, Denise welcomes any opportunity to incorporate new technologies and learning methodologies into learning media, creating successful, informative and enjoyable content geared toward engaging today's learners. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in Graphic Design and Master’s Degree in Communications from NY Institute of Technology. She resides in New York, 20 minutes outside of New York City.

Extended Abstract

After this session, you will be able to:

  1. Write measurable and observable learning outcomes.
  2. Design games and assessments aligned to learning outcomes.

During this collaborative and engaging session, you will first review writing learning outcomes and then explore gamification strategies and examples that engage learners and enable them to attain learning outcomes. During the session, you will utilize your device (cell phone, tablet, laptop) to access a gaming app (Kahoot) to participate in interactive quizzing and polling and interact with the presenters.

As an overview, you will be introduced to a two-phase course design approach used by Instructional Designers at the Galen College of Nursing to write learning outcomes and align media, assessments, and games to learning outcomes for college level courses. The following is an outline of this two-phase course design approach:

  1. Phase 1 focuses on analyzing data, curriculum needs, and content gaps and then addressing these by writing course and unit level learning outcomes.
  2. Phase 2 focuses on designing and developing engaging and interactive media lessons and formative assessments aligned to course content and learning outcomes developed during phase 1.

You will then participate in an interactive review and practice writing learning outcomes session. During this refresher you will be given sample content topics to practice writing outcomes using action verbs that are measurable, observable, and specify the knowledge and skills the learner should master. These learning outcomes will then serve as the foundation for the next part of the session, focused on designing assessments and learning games aligned to outcomes. 

Next, through discussion and audience participation, you will brainstorm and propose ideas for designing formative assessments and games aligned to the written learning outcomes. The presenters will then share some of the innovative interactive assessments and games they developed to assist students in mastering learning outcomes in college level nursing courses. These examples will inspire you think outside of the “checkbox” of boring assessment questions and ignite your imagination to create fun and engaging scenario and game-based assessments for any content.

Throughout the session, you will acquire tips and tricks on how to use gamification strategies to create effective e-learning assessments and games tied to learning outcomes. You will learn techniques to design creative game-based learning to support knowledge retention, application of concepts, and active learner engagement of even the most dull or complex content.

Presentation slides, handouts, and innovative example assessments and games will be provided during the presentation.