Fink’s Three Column Table and the UBD design model were both extremely helpful when planning the professional learning day 1 over incorporating blended learning opportunities into the classroom for my Middle School core teachers, grades 6 through 12. While similar in nature where both designs emphasize the necessity to have the learning goals in place before designing the actual learning activities, there are some differences as well. Fink’s Three Column Table design focuses on the authentic, final results and not the formal assessment of knowledge. This Three-Column Design targets the higher levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy. Whereas the UBD design is very skill and knowledge driven and specific on measuring those desired areas. The UBD template is divided into three stages: (1) Identify desired results, (2) Determine acceptable evidence, and (3) Plan learning experiences and instruction (Wiggins & McTighe, 2005. p.18).
There were aspects of both designs that I came to appreciate though. The UBD design incorporates within the third stage, the “WHERETO” elements. This helps to ensure that all the parts are included in the lesson design process (the “why”, hook and hold the learner, reflect/rethink/revise, evaluate, tailor to the learner and organize for deeper understanding). As you can see in my UBD design below, it more resembles the traditional lesson plan that educators use most often in K-12 education. Both models are effective and would be useful to anyone planning goals-based learning. However, I found the UBD design to be much more tedious and appears more appropriate for a specific lesson or unit. I prefer the Three-Column Table as it was more useful to create a broader long-term plan that includes a mixture of different lessons, practices and activities. Fink’s Three-Column Table was especially useful in planning day 1 of professional development (the introduction) to blended learning that compliments my innovation plan,Falcon STS. The Falcon STS course will be a live model of blended instruction where the students will assist teachers with instructional technology integration and support and it will also provide an opportunity for teachers to shadow, participate and/or witness student-centered, blended learning live and in person that utilizes student choice, ownership and voice in an effective learning environment. Therefore, utilizing Fink’s 3-Column Table for the proposed professional development allowed me to focus on the widely important goal first and foremost, and work backwards to develop and plan appropriate long-term activities, learning opportunities and ongoing support.
Fink, L. D. (2003). A self-directed guide to designing courses for significant learning.. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.
Wiggins, G. & McTighe, J. (2005). Understanding by design (expanded second ed.). Alexandria, Virginia: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.