Design for Understanding Meets the 21st Century School Librarian

The course is designed to introduce participants to the Understanding by Design Curriculum framework. Known as the Backward Design model, this framework is unique in that it begins with the end in mind. Rather than planning from an activity-centered focus, the school librarian first identifies the Big Ideas behind content standards. From these Big Ideas, the school librarian develops Enduring Understandings and Essential Questions to guide student inquiry. The school librarian then designs assessments that provide evidence of student learning. Finally, the school librarian designs the learning experiences.

Learning Outcomes

In this course, participants will work with the three stages in the Backward Design model to build a basic understanding of the process and apply the concepts to planning units of library instruction. Designing instruction with this framework enables the school librarian to engage students in learning activities that lead to deeper understanding of content and process.

Who Should Attend

  The course is open to current, personal members of AASL. Not a member? Join here.


Mary Keeling is Supervisor of Library Media Services in Newport News, Virginia. She is Co-Chair of the AASL/ACRL Interdivisional Committee on Information Literacy and Chair of the Supervisor's Section of AASL. She has presented webinars for her state association and for AASL. She is author of “The AASL Planning Guide: a District Approach to Powerful Professional Development.” Library Media Connection 31(5), 30-36.




$25.00 (The course is open to current, personal members of AASL. Not a member? Join here.)

How to Register

This course is not being offered at this time.

Tech Requirements

Internet connection and web browser.


Registrants successfully completing the course may request a Certificate of Completion for 12 contact hours.


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