Quality PM Curriculum Goes Beyond Development

PMI Northeast Indiana Chapter

This a difficult and never-ending effort. You can design a top-quality curriculum, but if you don’t continually improve it, it will very quickly degrade—or, more accurately, the world will pass it by. It requires a constant effort by the designers and implementers of the curriculum.

The following doesn’t really describe a process, but it does describe seven measurements. It comes from a great article, “The Seven Rʼs of a Quality Curriculum” (2007) by Ron Ritchhart of the Harvard Graduate School of Education:

1. Rigorous (not difficulty): He uses a slightly odd definition of “rigorous” that aligns with one of my pet peeves. Typically, a course or even a curriculum is designed and defined by text book manufacturers. The instructor has little latitude to expand or modify the course to incorporate something perhaps more useful to the local environment. I’ve had students that work in a very regulated artificial joint and limb manufacturing environment. They have laws, rules and an environment that is certainly worthy of a brief discussion—and we do discuss it, as well as other industry-specific concerns—in class.

2. Real: Rather than learning about project management, students should become project managers.

3. Requires independence: “Rather than engaging in deep learning, students merely complete work. A …

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If we do not succeed, then we run the risk of failure.

- Dan Quayle

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