Be sure to check out Will's post from June of 2006: New Taxonomy for Learning Objectives:
Instructional professionals use learning objectives for different purposes—even for different audiences. Learning objectives are used to guide the attention of the learner toward critical learning messages. Learning objectives are used to tell the learner what's in the course. They are used by instructional designers to guide the design of the learning. They are used by evaluation designers to develop metrics and assessments.Will talks about four, and possibly five, different types of objectives:
- Focusing Objectives
- Performance Objectives
- Instructional-Design Objectives
- Instructional-Evaluation Objectives
- Content-Outlining Objectives (Which is what many of us are used to producing in the form of text-bulleted lists of course objectives).