A thorough and useful curriculum is dependent upon evaluation. Research though different than evaluation is a necessary component of curriculum evaluation. Curriculum evaluation is an ongoing process that does not begin at the end of curriculum delivery; instead formative and summative evaluations are used conjointly to create a comprehensive view of the curriculum. Likewise, all those in contact with the curriculum from the teachers to the curriculum design specialist enact curriculum evaluation. This model provides a functional example of curriculum evaluation in which all aspects of the curriculum are evaluated and analyzed for program improvement.
Asking the right questions requires understanding of the desired goals in each area of the curriculum. Evaluating educational goals complete with their objectives in each area are the first step in assessment of the curriculum. Curricular components that should be addressed are;
is the curriculum relevant, is there a balance in the curriculum, is the curriculum integration desirable, is the curriculum properly sequenced, is there a continuity of programs, are learning's transferable, is the scope of the curriculum adequate, realistic, and are curricula well articulated between levels (Oliva, 2003)
Understanding the goals for curriculum and students in these areas is the first key to curriculum evaluation. ...
It is important to note that although closely related, evaluation and research, in the curriculum evaluation process are separate tools that combine to create a functional analysis of a program. Evaluation is the process, which determines the effectiveness of a program. Evaluation answers questions such as; is the scope of the curriculum realistic, is the sequence appropriate, is the curriculum age-appropriate, is the curriculum relevant (Oliva, 2003). Gathering data with the purpose of answering these questions is known as research. Both components are necessary for curriculum evaluation. The two provide the framework for the complete program evaluation and are the asking questions segment of the program evaluation. Research and evaluation will be used in program evaluation to determine areas of needs in the curriculum.
How will research be used to aid in evaluation. Research will come in many forms. Data should be gathered in the areas of academic success, extra-curricular involvement and achievements and best teaching practices. Academically, research will be gathered through state assessments, high-stakes testing, grade level exams and classroom assessments. These will be compiled to create a comprehensive view of academic achievement, which can be broken down from district wide to individual classrooms, including schools and grade level achievements along the way.
Extra-curricular activities will also be researched. Curriculum can be defined as all the programs offered in schools whether academic or not. Extra-curricular activities and sports are an integral part of a school's community and should be evaluated. Emphasis has been given to individual growth and inter-relationships among participants in extra-curricular activities. The behaviors