Understanding by Design: An Overview

Understanding by Design: An Overview

Author: Kendra Schwindt

At the end of this tutorial, you will be able to:

  • Explain the concept of Understanding by Design (UbD)™
  • Be able to compare the UbD process with traditional education curriculum planning to better understand that choosing end goals FIRST leads to more relevant, deeper student understanding.

Understanding by Design™ provides a student-focused curriculum planning process which utilizes "backward design" and "teaching for understanding" in order to properly align learning activities with relevant assessments to reach end learning goals and objectives.

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This tutorial provides an overview of McTighe & Wiggins' Understanding by Design (UbD) curriculum planning process. Backward design and teaching for understanding are discussed along with a comparison between the traditional education planning method and the UbD process.

Understanding McTighe & Wiggins' Understanding by Design Tutorial


Tutorial Overview


What is UbD?

Backwards Design or Backwards Planning

Teaching by Understanding

Comparison: traditional curriculum planning vs UbD