Office of the Provost and Vice-Principal


Provost and Vice-Principal (Academic)


Provost and Vice-Principal (Academic)

site header

Queen's Learning Outcomes Working Group

Queen's University Learning Outcomes Framework
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. What are learning outcomes?
Learning outcomes are statements that describe significant and essential learning, which can be reliably demonstrated at the end of a degree, program or course. They identify what a learner is expected to understand, value or demonstrate after completion of a process of learning.

2. Why is Queen’s developing a set of university-wide learning outcomes?
Queen’s is developing a set of institutional learning outcomes to: guide faculty in program development and review, assist students in developing learning goals and articulating their learning, integrate curricular and co-curricular experiences and ultimately to highlight the distinctiveness of a Queen’s University education.

3. How were the learning outcomes developed?
A Working Group of the Provost’s Advisory Committee on Teaching and Learning undertook an extensive process of consultation and a review of research and documentation. This included: an environmental scan, faculty board presentations, focus groups, survey, an employer scan and strategic document alignment. Additionally, program-level and accreditation outcome mapping was undertaken to ensure alignment. This process led to the development of the draft document of Queen’s University Learning Outcomes Framework.

4. How will the learning outcomes be used?
The learning outcomes will be used by faculty for program development purposes and as part of the cyclical review process. They will also be used by students to guide the development of learning outcomes throughout the course of their degree, as a framework to aggregate their learning (e.g. through the use of e-portfolios) and to articulate their learning upon graduating and entering the professional sector. The outcomes are meant to reflect the distinctiveness of a Queen’s education, while applying to students in all faculties, programs and degree levels.

5. Do the outcomes span both curricular and co-curricular learning?
Yes, the learning outcomes are intended to reflect both academic and co-curricular qualities, integrating them into one coherent framework.

6. What is the timeline for the process?
The learning outcomes working group began this project in Fall 2014. The first phase comprised the aforementioned consultation and review process leading to the current draft document. The second phase which is currently underway, consists of a second round of consultation and review culminating in a final document. The final document will go to Senate for approval in Spring 2015.

7. How will Queen’s ensure that the outcomes remain relevant and up-to-date?
The learning outcomes are meant to be general enough to apply to learning at Queen’s for a number of years, but a process will be implemented to review them and their use three years after their approval by Senate.

Terms of Reference

  • To develop, for the approval of the Provost's Advisory Committee on Teaching and Learning, Queen’s learning outcomes that reflect both academic and co-curricular qualities that highlight the distinctiveness of a Queen’s University education.
  • To implement an approval process that aligns with Queen’s current governance structures, including (but not limited to) faculty boards, graduate committees, SCAD and Senate.
  • To ensure that university-wide learning outcomes align with the COU’s degree level expectations and find their foundation in Queen’s Academic Plan.
  • To communicate and collaborate with other stakeholders who are invested in developing and promoting learning outcomes.
  • To recommend to the PACTL strategies to leverage institutional learning outcomes in ways that enrich the student learning experience.
  • To recommend to the PACTL mechanisms to collect and analyze data associated with achievement of the Queen’s learning outcomes.

Committee Membership

Name Title
A. al Shaibah Assistant Dean, Student Affairs, Student Life and Learning
S. den Otter Associate Dean, School of Graduate Studies
B. Frank Professor and Director of Program Development (Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science)
J. Fraser Associate Professor, Department of Physics
J. Hardwick  SGPS Representative 
R. Leask Academic Affairs Commissioners of the Alma Mater Society
J. Scott Vice-Provost, Teaching and Learning
P. Wolf Associate Vice-Provost, Teaching and Learning

Secretary: Margaret Watkin