Understanding by Design

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Topics: Education
Theoretical framework

Authors Grant Wiggins and Jay McTighe answer these and many other questions in this second edition of Understanding by Design. Drawing on feedback from thousands of educators around the world who have used the UbD framework since its introduction in 1998, the authors have greatly revised and expanded their original work to guide educators across the K-16 spectrum in the design of curriculum, assessment, and instruction. With an improved UbD Template at its core, the book explains the rationale of backward design and explores in greater depth the meaning of such key ideas as essential questions and transfer tasks. Readers will learn why the familiar coverage- and activity-based approaches to curriculum design fall short, and how a focus on the six facets of understanding can enrich student learning. With an expanded array of practical strategies, tools, and examples from all subject areas, the book demonstrates how the research-based principles of Understanding by Design apply to district frameworks as well as to individual units of curriculum.

Understanding by Design, or UbD, is a tool utilized for educational planning focused on "teaching for understanding".[1] The emphasis of UbD is on "backward design", the practice of looking at the outcomes in order to design curriculum units, performance assessments, and classroom instruction.[2] The UbD framework was designed by nationally recognized educators Grant Wiggins and Jay McTighe, and published by the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.[3] Understanding by Design® is a registered trademark of the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development ("ASCD") and UbD is a trademark owned by ASCD.
According to Wiggins, "The potential of UbD for curricular improvement has struck a chord in American education. Over 250,000 educators own the book. Over 30,000 Handbooks are in use. More than 150 University education classes use the book as a text."[3]

Understanding by

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