Planning Curriculum Evaluation

Please use this readings for this paper. from Curriculum Development in Nursing Education text Chapter 12 “Planning Curriculum Evaluation” pg 279-308 and authors Billings and Halstead Teaching in Nursing: A Guide for Faculty Chapter 28 “Educational Program Evaluation” pg 503-549.

The readings describe several different program evaluation theories and models, as well as the three different types of evaluation.

Evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of each evaluation type– formative, summative, and confirmative– as it relates to nursing education program courses or curricula.

Explain how each one relates to assessment and the necessity of revisions as part of the concept of continuous improvement.

What role does pilot testing play in program evaluation?

Types of Evaluations

Various types of evaluation exist and they include formative, summative and confirmative. This paper deliberates on the strengths and weaknesses of these evaluation methods as well as on the roles of pilot testing in program evaluation in relation to the nursing education program courses and curricula.

 Strengths of formative evaluation are that it reduces anxiety among the learners as it detaches the thinking that they need to get everything correct. Instead, they help students to get assistance along the way before they are tested in the final exams. It also allows teachers to address various issues at early stage before the final exams (Billings & Halstea, 2011). Weaknesses of this kind of evaluations is that it learners may not take this evaluation seriously making teachers to misread feedback from students. A lot of time may be sacrificed in these evaluations and may lead to rushing through series of units.

Summative evaluation evaluates learning at the end of the instructional unit by comparing it against certain benchmark. It has strengths as well as weakness. One strength of this evaluation is that it gives a realistic assessment of the student and therefore helps to guide the efforts of the teachers as well as learners (Billings & Halstea, 2011). A weakness of this kind of assessment is that it may not give the real picture on the performance of learners. The success of learner depends on various factors and assessing or evaluating learners at one point fails to capture in other elements such as sickness, stress among others.

Confirmative evaluation is relatively different when compared to formative and summative. It has strengths as well as weaknesses. One of the strength is that it ensures continuous verification of quality improvement of education and training programs. Therefore, it ensures that appropriate plans are put in place to ensure future success (Joan & Moseley,2010).  The weakness of the type of evaluation is that it may not be realistic as situations and conditions keep on changing. The plans may be required to be changed because of the changes in the circumstances.

Pilot testing plays various roles in evaluation program. One role is that it helps policy makers to try out other alternative arrangements for health care before institutionalizing the reforms. It also helps to generate some lessons pertaining to technical design and implementation that helps refinement of reforms (Billings & Halstea, 2011). It also gives an opportunity for greater control over the implementation intervention which allows for the establishment of a powerful information resource about effects of reforms.


Billings, D., & Halstea, J. (2011). Teaching in Nursing: A Guide for Faculty, New York; Saunders; 4th edition

Joan, C., & Moseley, J. (2010). Confirmative Evaluation: Practical Strategies for Valuing             Continuous Improvement.

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