Annual Performance Review

Goals and Objectives (Section X Part C)

Goals are broad, generalized statements about what is to be achieved or improved; statements of a desired result.

Objectives focus on what the faculty member will do in terms of specific, observable, measurable, short-term behaviors leading to the goal. They focus on behaviors to be achieved under specific conditions, and with defined criterion of performance. An objective is considered measurable when it describes a tangible outcome. As an example, objectives describing outcomes that you can see or hear are measurable. They should be relevant and consistent with institutional and departmental goals and, as previously noted, should be:

  • Specific
  • Observable
  • Measurable
  • Realistic
  • Attainable

It is helpful to view objectives as containing five elements:

  1. Who
  2. Will do
  3. How much (or how well)
  4. Of what
  5. By when

Though objectives can be written using different models or styles, they should have three components. The three components listed below are another way to think of the five elements listed above:

  1. Performance: Describe what you expect to be able to DO; a measureable verb. Describe what you will be doing when the objective has been achieved. For example, complete the sentence: “I will (an action verb)…”
  2. Conditions: Describe the conditions under which you expect your performance or behavior to occur (e.g., resources, circumstances, setting)
  3. Criterion: Describe the level of competence that you must reach or surpass; level of acceptable performance (e.g., quality, quantity, sustainability). How you will know that the competence has been achieved. It must be measureable.

When writing goals and objectives use words that are open to little interpretation (e.g., will list, will demonstrate vs. will know, will be able to). Only 1-2 succinct sentences are needed.

Example 1:

Goal: I will increase the quantity of my peer-reviewed educational research.


  1. I will attend one workshop to enhance my teaching skills by the end of this academic year.
  2. During AY11–12, I will submit 2 abstracts to peer-reviewed calls for upcoming conferences.
  3. During AY11–12, I will prepare a draft of a paper reporting my educational research.

Example 2:

Goal: I will increase my service activity at UMMS/UMMHC.


  1. Within the next month, I will explore opportunities to serve on committees at UMMS/UMMHC.
  2. Within the next 2 months, I will request participation on a committee that I am eligible to serve on during the AY09-10.
  3. I will serve on one additional UMMS/UMMHC committee during AY09-10.


Mager, R.F. (1962). Preparing instructional objectives: A critical tool in the development of effective instruction (3rd Ed) (pp. 3-10). Atlanta, GA: The Center for Effective Performance, Inc.

Kern, D.E., Thomas, P.A., Howard, D.M., Bass, E.B. (1998). Curriculum development for medical education: A six-step approach (pp. 28-32). Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins Press.