Tuesday, January 24, 2012

HOW TO add one Student Learning Outcome

It is assumed that the course where the SLO will be added already exists. If this isn't the case, please refer to these instructions.

It is assumed that you have a SLO ready to be input into the system.

It is assumed that you are logged into the system as a curriculum builder.


  1. Click on Build\Learning Outcome .
  2. Type or paste the SLO text in the Learning Outcome field.
  3. Optionally, add one or more Pre-requisite Learning Outcomes:
    1. Type one or more words related to an existing SLO, OR Type the symbol # followed by an existing tag (e.g. #mathematics ).
    2. Select the appropriate SLO from the list of suggested SLOs. You may narrow down the selection by typing more hints (words)
    3. Click on Add Another if there are more pre-requisite SLO to specify.
  4. Optionally, specify one or more course which covers this SLO.
    1. Type any hints such as course code, number or a word from the course's name.
    2. Select from the list.
    3. Click on Add Another if there are more courses to specify.
  5. Specify tags for this SLO. Each tag is separated by a comma. Use suggested tags as much as possible.

Better viewed in full screen mode.

Monday, January 23, 2012

HOW TO create one course

It is assumed that you have a number of Student Learning Outcomes ready to be input into Daedalus. Here is some information on briefing instructors to get good SLO.

It is assumed that you are logged into the system as a curriculum builder.

It is also assumed that the course code exists on the system. If not, refer to the instruction here (coming soon).


  1. Click on Build\Course from the navigation menu.
  2. Enter a Course Code. The autocomplete will suggest existing options.
  3. Enter a Course Number.
  4. Enter a Course Title.
  5. Optionally, you may specify:
    1. Cross listed Course Codes and Numbers.
    2. Pre-requisite Courses. These must already exist on the system to be linked here.
  6. Do not enter SLO at this time, although the option exists.
  7. Click on Submit.
  8. You may review and edit the information on the Edit page where you will be redirected. Always click on Submit Changes to save your work.

Better viewed in full screen.

Interface Documentation

You can find here some information on the interface of Daedalus. Please keep in mind that this documentation is a work in progress, may be incomplete and may benefit from your feedback. Please contact this site's author through the comment section below if you have feedback.

The Daedalus Menu (full).
Here is a snapshot of the full menu. Most user will only see a small fraction of this interface at any given time.

  • Advise [Not released at this time]
  • Browse
    • Course
    • Learning Outcomes
    • Term Reviews
    • Visual Maps
  • Analyse
    • Courses
    • Learning Outcomes
    • Term Reviews
    • Student Files [Not released]
  • Build
    • Courses
    • Course Codes
    • Learning Outcomes
    • Term Reviews
    • Programs [Not Released]
    • Goals [Not Released]
  • Manage
    • Courses
    • Course Codes
    • Learning Outcomes
    • Tags
    • Programs [Not released]
    • Goals [Not Released]
    • Imports/Exports
  • Tickets
    • Create Ticket

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Word cloud for the FCS

This word cloud was generated using wordle using all SLO from the FCS maps (Dalhousie) after removing the action verbs starting each SLO.

Verb cloud for the FCS

This image was prepared using the wordle application after extracting all of the action verbs used to define SLOs in the curriculum map of the Bachelor of Informatics and the Bachelor of Computer Science at Dalhousie. Note that only core courses in year 1-3 are mapped. 

One map in one glance...

Wordle: FCS2012mapIt can be quite interesting to throw an entire map into a word cloud to see what comes out. In this case, the words that are dominating the clouds are the action verbs used to begin Student Learning Outcomes. It is clear that, having the years 1, 2 and some year 3 courses mapped leaves a majority of the SLO to be in the lowest level of learning: where describing is one common task.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

What is Daedalus?

I only have a minute to figure this out...
Daedalus is an Open-Source curriculum mapping software based in the widely used Drupal web platform. It requires a minimal set of information, but does its best to make this information count as much as possible.

Usually, each course, lab or tutorial is broken down into 10-20 key students learning outcomes. That's the set of tasks that will be evaluated in one way or another. Each learning outcomes are labeled to organize them in a course independent manner. It is also valuable to keep track for each learning outcomes which other learning outcomes are good pre-requisites to master.

All this information is stored into a database, you control who can work on the map and who can view it. Students and instructors gets to find out how each course fits into the big picture.

Here is an example of a course mapped with Daedalus: CSCI 1101 (Dalhousie University)

OK, you got my attention. My school is trying to figure out which software is out there. What can Daedalus do for us?
Usually, one of more editor, or project leader, will brief instructors about mapping, its use and the process in general. Our prime design principle is that one course should be mapped in about 1 hour of work in between the editor and instructors. The data is either input through a simple web form, or imported from a spreadsheet saved in the so called tab-delimited format.

Because the maps are websites, it is simple to make them available to your students and instructors. This means that the data will be useful to many people and for many different purpose. University instructors do not have a lot of time to spend on pedagogical issues, whether we like to admit it or not. However, mapping can be done if the workflow is straightforward,streamlined and the results impacts students, instructors and academic units.

To get more information on trying it out, consult this page.

Website launched.

Here is the first post for the Daedalus project. This project is active since 2010, but is just now going public.