Course Outline Manager

About the Course Outline Manager

The Course Outline Manager grew from a concept and application developed by the Ontario Agricultural College (OAC) and the School of Environmental Sciences (SES) to create a standardized, accessible course outline, and to link course learning outcomes to assessments within the course and out to the larger program level outcomes.

Further development has been a collaborative effort between the School of Engineering (SOE) and Open Learning and Educational Support (OpenEd). The tool has gone through a proof of concept phase and a pilot with a limited number of courses from SOE and SES. OpenEd will take on the administrative role, with a more ambitious pilot in the fall of 2017 involving OAC, SOE and CBS, as well as a handful of courses from other colleges.

General Description

The Online Course Outline tool is based on the AVPA's Course Outline Checklist. The tool allows faculty to create outlines online with a consistent format across the University. Serving as an archive for all course outlines, the tool can be referenced by departmental pages and course websites. As the archive builds, faculty are able to clone from past outlines and make updates or changes.

Connection to University Systems

The tool connects to University systems for consistent up-to-date, standardized information including:

  • Colleague for course information including instructors
  • Calendar information
  • LDAP for access and user information
  • Policy statements at different levels--University, College, Department

Tool Functionality

Tool access and functionality is based on roles including Administrator, Author, Reviewer, and Approver. The tool has a built-in process for review, commenting, approval, and publishing.There is a standardized format for course-related information, although there is room for additional information, and some department branding (logo). Course learning outcomes can be mapped to course assessments. Since the tool is database driven, the information and the relationships contained in an outline can be extracted in a consistent format for statistical analysis.

Working with the Tool

Each outline is divided into sections, with a tab for each section, where appropriate course information is entered. Some fields are populated from University systems (e.g., Colleague, LDAP); some fields have university, program, or department information; and, in most sections, custom fields are available.


Course outline sections include:

  • Details - calendar information about the course, pre-populated by other systems on campus
  • Instructional Support - instructional support staff associated with the course
  • Resources - learning resources that students may require while taking the course
  • Outcomes - learning outcomes students will have demonstrated upon successful completion of the course
  • Activities - teaching and learning activities that will take place in the course
  • Assessment - methods, breakdown and specific due dates for the course
  • Statements - standard statements that relate to the course and that may be required by the department, college or University
  • Activity Log - any activity that has occurred on the outline since it has been created
  • Properties - details about the outline, including currently associated authors and reviewers

Support Resources

Visit our Course Outline Manager Quick Start Guide page.

Watch our Course Outline Manager Tool video below.


If you require assistance with the Course Outline Manager or would like to make suggestions for improvement, please contact CourseLink Support.