20-Minute Mentors

How Can I Create an Engaging, Student-Focused Syllabus?

For faculty whose syllabi are often unread by students, leading to confusion and even misinformation later in the course, this 20-Minute Mentor shows how to make a visually appealing syllabus that quickly communicates crucial course details to students in an engaging way.

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How Can I Create an Engaging, Student-Focused Syllabus?

How engaging is your syllabus?

The syllabus is a roadmap for students and a planning guide for teachers. Most instructors are familiar in general terms with the idea of a syllabus and know that it provides an overview of a course. They may not realize how significant the syllabus is in setting course expectations and they may not know how or why to create a living syllabus that includes more visual elements and that can be updated as a course progresses.

This 20-Minute Mentor gives ideas to make your syllabus more engaging, more student-centered, and more creative without a lot of extra effort. You’ll be able to turn a typically dry document into a living, engaging, and interactive student resource that can include multimedia, a series of slides, or a connected group of visuals—all created without any special technical know-how.  Additionally, you’ll explore how to re-envision an existing syllabus so it will resonate with students.

Learning Goals

After viewing this Magna 20-Minute Mentor, participants will be able to:

  • Create more engaging syllabi
  • Implement frameworks for developing a new syllabus and for upgrading an existing syllabus
  • Discover new tools and techniques for creating engaging syllabi that will help engage students at the start of a course
  • Confidently assess a syllabus’s engagement potential
  • Introduce a syllabus in new ways to spark student interest early in a course

Topics Covered

  • The multiple purposes of a syllabus
  • Why syllabi are often ignored by students
  • A step-by-step process for developing a new syllabus
  • A framework for upgrading an existing syllabus
  • How to use visuals and other creative elements to make a syllabus more engaging
  • New tools for creating a living syllabus
  • A checklist for assessing the engagement potential of your syllabus
  • Creative ways to introduce your syllabus to students


This program will benefit:

  • Faculty
  • Instructional Designers


Product Code: PM22AA

Campus Access License

With the purchase of the optional Campus Access License, registrants are granted a license to download the program contents to a password-protected network, server, or website for additional staff use. You will receive information on downloading the contents of the program within 3-5 business days after payment has been received by Magna.

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*On-demand access begins on date of purchase.

If you are not completely satisfied with your purchase, you may cancel the order within 30 days of purchase and receive a full refund.