City Vision Institute

Nonprofit Educational Program Design

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Course Description

In this course you will develop an educational program plan in a nonprofit organization to help bring transformational life change in clients. This course is focused on adult education in the social service sector, but principles could apply to other types of programs. In this course you will learn the principles of adult education. In the first part of the course, you will focus on analysis including: assessing client educational needs, designing education to support nonprofit outcomes and researching outside resources and program models. In the second part of the course, you will develop educational program learning outcomes, a course syllabus, a lesson plan (which you will teach) and an evaluation and retention plan. 

Course Objectives

After completing this course, you will be able to:

  1. Create a philosophy of adult education for your context based on the principles of adult education and the characteristics of adult learners.
  2. Develop a detailed assessment of your client educational needs and a plan to assess client needs and capabilities in the future. 
  3. Generate a detailed theory of change and logic model for your organization’s holistic program and explain how your educational program components will support the larger program or organizational outcomes.
  4. Research, evaluate and utilize outside learning resources as well as best practices and program elements from organizations to use in your program. 
  5. Design educational program outcomes that follow best practices and support nonprofit program outcomes.
  6. Develop a syllabus for a course following best practices that supports at least one of your educational program outcomes. 
  7. Create and deliver a one hour lesson plan utilizing instructional strategies that fit with your lesson plan outcomes and your audience. 
  8. Develop a retention and evaluation plan to improve your education program.


Self-Paced or Group Facilitated

This course is designed so that students can go through it individually on their own, or go through it as a group facilitated by any group leader. The Guide for Group Leaders & Live Discussions provides suggestions for discussion topics for those going through as a group. The group leader may also choose to assign some of the items in the Student Assignment Workbook as "homework" to do between meetings.

Students that wish to advance their learning may find it helpful to go through the assignments in the above workbook.

Course Content

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