As an academic, course and curriculum design are second only to teaching as two of the most important activities I have participated in my career in higher education. In almost three decades at colleges and universities, however, I’ve learned some important lessons about designing curricula. As an idea person, it strikes me that all ideas are interesting, worth exploring and presenting to students. But in higher education today, it’s worth remembering that there are key factors that need to be integrated into all curricular design. And failing to do so will painfully reinforce the old adage that ideas (or curricula) are like fish—all shine, but some stink.