Course Templates Explained

A course template typically refers to a syllabus that contains boilerplate language for everyone throughout an institution to adhere to.

Such a document can go by many names (master syllabus, course outline, course format, etc.). Despite the terminology, they all hope to achieve similar results: increased consistency (particularly among multiple campuses and adjuncts), ease of accreditation reporting, and student access.

Syllabus templates may be introduced at various administrative levels (institutional, department, course, etc.) and with the expectation that at least some of the language and formatting not be modified.

In Concourse, we define a template in much the same way and provide tools to ensure that your syllabus management processes can be streamlined and guaranteed. This is done in three ways: content, permissions, and reporting.

1) A syllabus template can be built in Concourse that contains content that applies to your organizational structure, universally at the institution level all the way down through course-level content like outcomes. Formatting, both in terms of style and terminology, is also preserved throughout the system. Furthermore, templates can be "chained" together in such a way that these lower-level course templates can inherit content from the higher ones, meaning you only have to change content in a single place. In Concourse we refer to these as linked templates.

2) Templates also carry permissions, so not only can you instantly insert a policy in every syllabus related to academic integrity, but you can also make sure that instructors are unable to edit that content. This is done through setting item permissions within the template course.

3) Then, given the high degree of organization and syllabus workflow, reports can be generated that look specifically look at syllabus content and audit.

Have a suggestion or comment regarding course templates or any other syllabus-related topic? Please let us know! Visit the Community Area in the Concourse Support Center to share tips and learn about other schools' best practices.

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