Using Backward Design for More Effective Teaching

Monday, 7/10/2023 - Friday, 8/18/2023

Backward design is a concept that is taught in some user education/library instruction classes, but is not a large part of the education of every library worker who teaches or trains. First introduced by Grant Wiggins & Jay McTighe in their book " Understanding by Design" , its basic steps can be adapted to any teaching context, whether it's training student workers or giving a workshop on computer skills to seniors. This course will cover the basics of backward design, ask participants to practice them in several different contexts, and then apply them to a context in their work. 

This course will be mostly asynchronous with synchronous sessions at the beginning, so that participants can get to know each other, and at the end, so they can present their final projects. 


Learning Outcomes

By the end of the course, the participant will be able to:

  • Explain the purpose of using backward design and connect it to their own teaching and learning experiences
  • Design lesson plans and assessment using the principles of backward design
  • Incorporate learner's motivations, transferability, and assessment of learning into lesson planning
  • Apply backward design to their own teaching context(s)

Who Should Attend

This course is aimed for anyone who teaches or wants to teach users (other staff), regardless of library type. While it's introductory, all levels of experience are welcome for those who are new to the idea of backward design or would like to build on their teaching skills. 



Elizabeth Galoozis is Head of Information Literacy and Student Engagement atThe Claremont Colleges Library, where she focuses on integrating information literacy into students' first two years, leading pedagogical development for teaching librarians, and engaging students and faculty with research and the library.



  • $129.50 for RUSA members
  • $188.10 for ALA members
  • $209 for non-ALA members
  • $141.08 for student members and retired members

How to Register

  • Online  
  • By Email download, complete and email form (PDF format) to
  • By Mail: download, complete and mail form (PDF Format) to American Library Association, ATTN: MACS/Online CE Registration, 225 N. Michigan Ave. Suite 1300, Chicago, IL 60601

Tech Requirements

ALA uses Moodle for all online educational courses. It is hosted at 

All content for this course will be provided by the instructor. No textbook required.


Questions about your registration should be directed to Technical questions about the course should be directed to Ninah Moore at

Thank you and we look forward to your participation!