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How to Use (and Not Use) Learning Objectives


Learning objectives are a critical link between the identification of a training need and the delivery of training to meet that need (Garavan, Hogan, & Cahir-O'Donnell, 2003, p. 182). They serve three vital purposes:

  • To define specifically what a successful learner will be able to do as a result of the instruction
  • To guide the selection of content, methods, and exercises
  • To establish criteria for determining whether or not the instruction was successful.

Instructional objectives require three elements to fulfill these purposes (Mager, 1997, p. 47):

  • Performance. The objective ...

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