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evaluation of curricula

JMCD


Subject Linguistics

DOI: 10.1111/b.9780631214823.1999.x


Extract

Even when restricted, as here, to refer to whole programmes, ‘evaluation’ is a very broad term with a number of different dimensions, and consequently is difficult to delineate. A curriculum cannot be evaluated in a vacuum without reference to its context, aims and objectives, designers, managers, teachers and its resource base, which leads to some complex permutations. Related but narrower terms are ‘assessment’, ‘appraisal’ and ‘testing’. Evaluation has long been of major importance in general education (e.g. Norris, 1990 ) and now has particular currency in a climate of public accountability and quality control. Brown (1989 : 223) offers the following definition: ‘ evaluation is the systematic collection and analysis of all relevant information necessary to promote the improvement of a curriculum, and assess its effectiveness and efficiency, as well as the participants’ attitudes within the context of the particular institutions involved.’ This is a useful but of course global definition, which triggers more specific questions and categories: What is to be evaluated? Teachers, learners, programme design, delivery materials? When is the evaluation to take place? At the end of the course, in the middle, several times? Who is/are the evaluators? Sponsors, teachers, Ministry of Education officials, senior staff, external consultants? Why is evaluation necessary in this situation? ... log in or subscribe to read full text

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