This paper discusses the development of an online databasedriven electronic tool for building profiles for university courses (or subjects). We take the view that any technology, including a pedagogic one, needs to be designed for, understood as and evaluated within its place in a complex socio-technic system of human-to-human as well as human-to-tool relationships.
Many academics are reluctant to make changes to their practice either because of change fatigue or insufficient commitment to or understanding of the new requirements for transparency and accountability. In our institution, adoption of a new policy for the production of standardised course profiles gave us the opportunity to draw all of the school staff into the new processes. We designed an electronic tool which embodies both the course profile policy and the explicit identification of and planning for graduate attributes and which seeks to pay attention to the socio-technic system within which it operates. Intended as a tool to aid academics meet requirements, it has had the benefit of encouraging users to reconsider their understanding of such educational issues as objectives and criteria and reconsider their educational aims. This paper describes the design of the tool from both technological and social viewpoints.
This paper also addresses the relationship between the technical design of the tool, university policy and good pedagogical practice, the mapping of learning objectives to assessment and the mapping of graduate attributes to programs.