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2024/25 Taught Postgraduate Module Catalogue

ELU5004M Principles of curriculum and assessment design

15 creditsClass Size: 50

Module manager: Bee Bond

Taught: Semester 1 (Sep to Jan) View Timetable

Year running 2024/25

Pre-requisite qualifications

- Prior learning to Level 6 (undergraduate degree or equivalent)

- Either: a post graduate teaching qualification (Diploma; Post Graduate Certificate; Masters) and/or minimum 2 years fulltime or cumulative experience of teaching in higher education or teaching English for Specific Purposes.

- Minimum English language expertise at 7 overall in IELTS with a minimum of 7 in all components; C1 CEFR

Module replaces


This module is not approved as an Elective

Module summary

By completing the module, participants will reach an in-depth understanding and be able to critique current knowledge and issues in EAP related to curriculum and syllabus design and assessment. Students will also be asked to demonstrate the development in their understanding of the field by developing their own syllabus based on a needs analysis and demonstrate how it is context appropriate and based on clear EAP-informed principles and values


In this module you will consider approaches to and theories for needs analysis, syllabus and curriculum design in different EAP contexts. You will focus on assessment and feedback in syllabus design.

You will apply this to practice by analysing example syllabuses, including how they incorporate assessments, and by developing your own syllabus for a specific context.

Learning outcomes
Pedagogical knowledge:

1. Develop an EAP syllabus that reflects a clear philosophy of teaching.

Discipline Knowledge:

2. Demonstrate knowledge of the underpinning theories and principles that inform an EAP curriculum/syllabus and assessment design.

3. Analyse and critique a range of EAP curricula and syllabuses.

Research and professional competency

4. Use needs analysis, including questionnaire and ethnographic study to design syllabus, assessment and feedback tasks that reflect the learning intentions of a syllabus.


Indicative content includes:

1. Needs analysis for syllabus design

2. Principles of syllabus design

3. Assessment of language learning and of understanding of academic discourse and communication

4. Designing assessment criteria for language, discourse and academic communication

5. Incorporating values and approaches into syllabus design

6. Ethnography/ textography

7. Designing for different contexts and levels

8. The role of teaching materials

9. Online or face-to-face?

10. EAP in the wider curriculum

Teaching methods

Delivery typeNumberLength hoursStudent hours
Independent online learning hours20.00
Private study hours108.50
Total Contact hours21.50
Total hours (100hr per 10 credits)150.00

Opportunities for Formative Feedback

There are two formative tasks. The first is a comparison of different syllabus types, to be completed for asynchronous class discussion in week 3. Class feedback from this will support students in the critical analysis task. The second formative task requires students to conduct a needs analysis. The outcome of this will feedforward and inform the final task of designing a syllabus.

Methods of assessment

Assessment typeNotes% of formal assessment
EssayCritical Analysis of an existing syllabus. 1500 words40.00
AssignmentDesign a needs-based, context specific syllabus with rationale. 1500 words60.00
Total percentage (Assessment Coursework)100.00

Normally resits will be assessed by the same methodology as the first attempt, unless otherwise stated

Reading list

The reading list is available from the Library website

Last updated: 19/12/2023


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