Planning tools

There are lots of free online tools to help you to plan your curriculum. It can often be helpful to start by mapping out your course design using sticky notes. This can be done using paper and pens, but there are also online tools, which all you to save your ideas and collaborate with others in different locations. You can then use this curriculum design storyboard to check course alignment and student progression, facilitate the completion of course approval documentation and provide a framework for discussion with collaborators and the course team.


Lino is a free sticky note and canvas service that allows you to create a private noticeboard that you can share with a group. It is very simple to set up, and you can include text, images, video and files in a sticky note, but videos need to be uploaded to YouTube or Vimeo first. You can choose the colour, typeface and size of each note which can be a useful organisational tool.

Screenshot of Lino


Another free noticeboard collaboration tool is Padlet. This works in a similar way to Lino, and you can create a ‘Wall’ that is either private to you, shared with a group, or public. Unlike Lino, Padlet doesn’t allow users to colour code sticky notes, but it does allow you to post videos directly to the wall without having to upload them elsewhere first. You have have the option of moderating notes, so that if someone wants to add a comment, you can check that you are happy with it before it is added to the wall. Padlet also allows you to export and print your wall.

Screenshot from Padlet


Gingko is a free online word processing tool that allows you to work on the structure and content at the same time, so it is ideally suited for large complex documents. It allows you to map out your ideas as a series of cards which you can drag and drop around the screen. It allows you to work collaboratively on a document by sharing a private link.

Screenshot of Gingko

Learning Designer

Learning Designer is a suite of tools to help share good teaching practice. It is designed to allow you to see how a particular teaching and learning approach can be used across different topics. There are sample course patterns to browse or edit or you can create your own from scratch. You enter the required learning time, number of students, aims and outcomes, and you can then organise a series of teaching and learning activities. It when you have entered the different types of activities necessary for the learner to meet their outcomes, it provides a pie chart so you can see at a glance how much of each type of learning you have planned.

Screenshot of Learning Designer

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