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Essentials of Writing Impactful Learning Objectives

Craft measurable and meaningful learning objectives.

Strong objectives set the stage for good learning by providing a roadmap to your end goal. In this practical, collaborative class, you will dive into writing “observable” and “measurable” objectives and applying practical techniques that simplify the writing process.

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Credits: CEU 0.45 MORE
Level: Foundational
Role(s): Instructional Designer More
Language(s): English


Course Info

Do the majority of your learning objectives start with “know” and “understand”? Sometimes the habit of using these verbs gets the best of us. If so, you are not alone. Learning objectives are often an undervalued part of the design process, but they shouldn’t be.

... Read More

Do the majority of your learning objectives start with “know” and “understand”? Sometimes the habit of using these verbs gets the best of us. If so, you are not alone. Learning objectives are often an undervalued part of the design process, but they shouldn’t be.

This course provides practical, easy-to-use techniques for writing learning objectives that are behavior-focused and measurable. You will review methods that show you why your objectives matter and how tying them to learning outcomes supports learning goals. Receive feedback from your facilitator and peers as you practice crafting objectives for one of your upcoming projects. Read Less

What You Will Learn
  • Write effective learning objectives based on observable actions or behaviors.
  • Articulate the benefits of sound learning objectives.
  • Apply best practices for structuring learning objectives.
  • Choose an appropriate model to write learning objectives.
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of learning objectives and recommend revisions to improve quality.
Essential Topics INSIGHT

Essential Topics. Essential Learning. Essentials Series.

I recently sat down with ATD’s Jason Sturges to learn more about the more than 50 Essentials Series online workshops that ATD Education now offers. Jason manages content curation and development for...

EDU - Colored Pencils INSIGHT

The Essentials Series

ATD’s Essentials Series Annual Pass offers a flexible and affordable way to increase your performance via interactive, online learning taught by the industry’s leading subject matter experts.

Topic 1 - What are Learning Objectives and Why are They Important?
  • Define learning objectives (function).
  • Explain the benefits of measurable and observable learning objectives.
  • Identify the difference between skills, knowledge, and attitudes and how these relate to writing objectives.
  • Introduce Bloom’s Taxonomy and classify learning objectives.
  • Reconstruct objectives using Bloom’s Taxonomy action verbs.
Topic 2 - How do We Simplify the Learning Objective Writing Process?
  • Recognize components of an effective learning objective.
  • Design learning objectives that contain all elements for a specific scenario.
  • Determine which model(s) to use based on a given situation.
  • Develop your formula for writing objectives that will work for your training programs when you are back on the job.
Topic 3 - Put it into Practice.
  • Develop learning objectives for each of Bloom’s levels.
  • Construct objectives for an example scenario course and explain which models were used and why.
  • Perform a peer review and critique of one another’s learning objectives for a current or upcoming course.
  • Share your experiences and learn best practices for writing learning objectives.
  • Reflect on what you will do differently the next time you write learning objectives.
Who Should Attend

This program is for learning professionals who wish to create learning objectives that make an impact. Whether you are a trainer, an instructional designer, or an organization development professional, if you are interested in writing effective learning objectives that focus on the learner’s desired skills, knowledge, and behaviors, then this program is for you.

ATD Education programs are designed primarily for learning professionals – trainers, instructional designers, and organizational development practitioners – but also greatly benefit anyone within an organization who is responsible for developing others, from managers to human resources specialists.

Level: Foundational
Roles: Instructional Designer, Trainer
Language: English
What Our Participants Are Saying
Dustin Staiger

"My involvement in ATD has given me guidance in a dynamically changing market, while making me more valuable to my organization. Joining ATD has literally been a career-defining decision for me."

Jane Loda

"I can rely on ATD to present material that is very well constructed, timely, content-rich, and relevant to the challenges workplace learning professionals face every day."

Cindy Lam

"ATD is an organization dedicated to talent development - with their research and expertise, I trust that their programs can give me what I am looking for to implement within my organization."

Dates & Locations
  • Aug 12-26, 2019
    Live Online
  • Oct 16-30, 2019
    Live Online
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Things To Know


Face-to-Face Courses
Participation in all originally scheduled days of the program is mandatory in order to receive the certificate of completion and CEUs. Participants who miss more than two hours of the entire program will not be eligible to receive the certificate. Participants who fulfill the attendance requirement will receive a certificate at the end of the program.

Online Courses
Participation in all online sessions at their currently scheduled day and time is mandatory to receive a completion certificate and any applicable credits.

ATD requires active participation through the program to receive credit for the class. Active participation includes, but is not limited to, participating in virtual classroom activities, discussions, breakout sessions, and intersession work. Please note that using a tablet or mobile device severely limits your ability to fully and actively participate.

For programs with five or more sessions, one missed live session can be made up by listening to the session recording in full. Participants who miss more than one live session will not be eligible to receive the certificate. For programs with four or fewer sessions, attendance at all live sessions is required to receive a certificate. If you meet the eligibility requirements, a certificate will be issued to you through the ATD Learning Portal at the end of the program. All sessions will be recorded and available for participants to review throughout the program for your reference.


4.5 Learning Hours

0.45 CEUs awarded

Up to 4.5 APTD Recertification Points through the ATD Certification Institute.

Up to 4.5 CPLP Recertification Points through the ATD Certification Institute.


Enrolled in a program? Sign in to the ATD Learning Portal with your ATD account credentials two weeks before the first day of class to:

  • Engage with your facilitator and peers.
  • Access pre-work assignments.
  • View any technical requirements.
  • Review logistical information.


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