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9.5 FUNCTIONS OF CURRICULUM EVALUATION

Some functions of curriculum evaluation are as follows:

  • Informing decision-makers on the state of affairs of certain curriculum programs or syllabuses, and
  • Enabling teachers to evaluate themselves

Decision Making:

The principal purpose of evaluation is to contribute to decision making. In our circumstances, curriculum evaluations are conducted in order to correct deficiencies, make improvements and establish new priorities. For meaningful decisions to be made, they must be supported by evidence from evaluation exercises.

Self-Evaluation:

This puts you, the teacher, at the centre of the evaluation exercise. You are a curriculum developer indulging in research-based teaching. The advantage of self-evaluation is that it allows you to change the curriculum or instructional strategies if evaluations show that they could be more effective.

Focuses of Evaluation

Evaluation generally focuses on the whole curriculum or aspects of it such as objectives, content, methodology and outcomes.

Curriculum Objectives

These have to be evaluated because they are the foundation on which the curriculum program or project is frequently based: In order to conduct evaluations on objectives, a number of questions must be asked.

  • Are the objectives worthwhile?
  • Can they be achieved?
  • What are the expected outcomes?

Also, objectives have to be evaluated because curriculum content. methodologies and materials are designed to fit objectives. Teachers use Curriculum objectives to guide classroom activities, hence the need for evaluation.

Curriculum Content and Methodology

The content must be evaluated in order to establish whether it is relevant to the needs and aspirations of the society. When evaluating curriculu content, the focus should be on the effect it has on learners. It is important to determine whether the methodology is consistent with the curriculum objectives and appropriate for the content.

Curriculum Outcomes

The evaluation of objectives, content and methodology are conducted simultaneously as the evaluation of outcomes. The purpose of this evaluation is to supply curriculum designers with information that can be used in improving the curriculum as a whole.

Evaluation Methods and Tools

A variety of methods and tools can be used to conduct evaluations, including the following:

  • Observations
  • Interviews
  • Tests
  • Questionnaires etc

The observation, interview and questionnaire techniques can be used when evaluating the entire curriculum as well as specific curriculum programs or projects. One technique that is usually used to evaluate the outcomes of curriculum programs is subjecting students to structured tests. Students academic performance is usually evaluated by using this technique.

Also, the content of a subject matter can be evaluated by testing students in its various content areas. Results from this type of evaluation are given to curriculum designers to enable them to review the subject areas affected and make necessary changes and improvements.

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