Session 1A | Discover Learning Design with LEaD

Lisa Baker and Dominic Pates

Learning Design can be a key factor in transforming higher education in the post-COVID world. LEaD Digital Education has been exploring learning design initiatives in collaboration with academics in City’s schools. This has involved running co-design workshops with programme teams to look at ways to enhance the experience of online teaching and learning.  

These hands-on, curriculum development workshops are based on UCL’s globally-recognised ABC storyboard approach to Learning Design, where teams work together to create a visual storyboard of the learning activities that are needed to meet a module’s learning outcomes, (Young & Perović, 2016). Building on Professor Diana Laurillard’s Conversational Framework, (Laurillard, 2012), the workshops use six learning types: Acquisition, Discussion, Investigation, Practice, Collaboration and Production to categorise teaching and learning activities. ABC can be used for new programmes or to introduce an online or more blended format to existing programmes, (Young & Perović, 2016).  

In a case study, DCU found that ABC encourages creativity within a team by providing an opportunity to collaborate on the initial design of course activities, (Ní Shé et. al., 2020). 

At City, academic colleagues have worked with LEaD to re-design and enhance the teaching and learning experience on their modules and programmes by including activities representing the six learning types to encourage effective, engaging, collaborative and active learning. Colleagues collaborate in workshops to create storyboards showing each section or week of their module. Each section builds to represent a complete storyboard showing the online and offline teaching and learning activities required to meet the module or programme learning outcomes. 

In this workshop, LEaD will introduce the ABC storyboard approach to Learning Design. Participants will have the opportunity to collaborate and co-produce a storyboard design for the first 2 weeks of a sample module, based on a sample module summary and sample learning outcomes. 


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ABC Learning Design Toolkit. Online:

Laurillard, D., 2012. Teaching as a Design Science. Building Pedagogical Patterns for Learning.

Ní Shé, C., Farrell, O., Bruton, J., Costello, E., Trevaskis, S., Donlon, E. and Eccles, S., 2020. DCU case study: Using ABC to design an online teaching course for open online educators. ABC Learning Design.

Young, C. and Perović, N., 2016. Rapid and creative course design: as easy as ABC?. Procedia-Social and Behavioral Sciences, 228, pp.390-395.

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