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CURRICULUM EVALUATION RESOURCES


1







Module 4A
:
Curriculum Evaluation Resources

California State University, Chico

Jennifer Denno, Katie Bedre, Margaret Ruch, Ruby Acojedo,
Siri Johnson

May 11
, 2012

Dr.
Irene Morgan







CURRICULAR CONCEPTS


2


Literature Review


A literature review was performed to gather existing knowledge about curriculum
evaluation using CINAHL, PubMed, ERIC, Medline, and JSTOR
. Boolean terms used to both
limit and broaden this search included: curriculum, evaluation,
nursing,

outcomes,
and
technology.

This literature search is important because it adds quality
curriculum assessment
knowledge to our
current
understanding of curriculum evaluation. We picked three of the
se
studies to share, as they were

most relevant to t
he program we are presenting.


As our program is an innovative program that will mix technology with innovative
nursing education techniques to focus on certain curricular outcomes, the first study we chose
focuses on online educational
curricular
assessm
ent techniques. Blood
-
Siegfried et al. (2008)
received funding to determine best practices in online nursing education. They
review
ed seven
existing rubrics
that were
used to assess online education (including one from Chico). They
selected criteria from t
hese ru
brics that they found essential,
group
ed
similar evaluation criteria
and concepts, and then developed a

concept map of ma
jor criteria. Formatting the new rubric
was based on
standards of practice,
clarity, and exceptional practice levels

within each rubric
criterion. The group next discussed and
ran
ked each criterion within each
rubric category for its
importan
ce to
principle
s of good teaching and student
learning
. The
developed
rubric was tested
using five online master’s level courses,
and revised to include
more informatics standards

for
broader overall applicability. This study identified five primary areas of concern when
implementing an online educational component: organization and design criteria, course content,
instruction, inter
action, and evaluation and assessment.
Review of these five areas will be
instrumental in assessing our own online
curriculum for effectiveness and applicability of
material to the online student learning environment.

CURRICULAR CONCEPTS


3


A study performed by
Garrett, MacPhee
,
and Jackson (2010) highlighted curriculum
assessment techniques within high fidelity simulation, another important part of our innovative
nursing program.
High fidelity simulation (HFS) refers to the ability for

educators to
not only
simulate situations,

but also to provide physiological interactions and

real
-
time feedback
.
In this
study,
core groups of faculty was trained to operate the high fidelity manikins, and then were
paired
to

present
simulations to nursing students in a setting that promoted team
work. Challenges
to the study included finding the best ways to meet learning outcomes using this technology.
Despite these challenges, appropriate

assessments for

the use of high fidelity
simulation included
appropriate resources and materials (including technical expertise), a simulation design
framework, faculty training and resources, student orientation to HFS and environment, physical
layout, student group size, fully developed scenari
os (patient chart, Kardex, real life situation,
and symmetrical diagnoses), time, simplicity (one concept at a time), facilitator prompts,
videotaping, and debriefing. In the process of evaluating our curriculum, assessing each of these
areas will be an im
portant way to identify areas of improvement in our simulation training.


Our final

study from our literature review
wa
s by Lange, Ingersoll, and Novotny
(2008
),
who studied program outcome evaluation components when implementing an innovative nursing
pro
gram. As our program has an outcomes based structure, these components are especially
important to us.
This study highlights the need for nursing programs to emphasize evidence
based practice, even within the nursing education they provide. Institutions th
at
provide for
innovative curriculum development and design support evidence based practice by encouraging
pursuit of the evidence, management of limited resources, engagement in cultural transformation,
and pursuit of university and nursing values. The st
udy involved reviewing visionary leadership,
the intentional alignment of structures, systems, and policies

with the program
, encouraging
CURRICULAR CONCEPTS


4


stakeholder participation, consistent communication, and the need for continuous evaluation of
structure, process, and

outcomes

within the innovative program
. Internal audits were performed
to determine
program goals, identify strategies to achieve these goals, and detect the
most
appropriate methods for accurate and consistent measurement of program process and outcome
s.

Outcomes were measured for both anticipated and unanticipated outcomes. Evidence of cultural
change was determined using
interviews

and focus groups. An external audit compared program
objectives to outcomes.
Documents reviewed during the outcome evaluati
on segment included
the following: program proposal, geriatric content grid for undergraduate curriculum, course
descriptions, program progress summary report, list of advisory board members, program flier,
evaluation plan, representative student papers an
d projects, program announcement materials, list
of partnering clinical agencies, faculty development plan, benchmark outcome assessment
reports, and assessment tools.
It would be valuable for our curriculum committee to evaluate
these areas to ensure effe
ctiveness of our innovative nursing program.

P
rimary Evaluating Entities


Our program incorporated many of the concepts from the Commission on Collegiate
Nursing Education (CCNE) and the
National League for

Nursing (NLN) in building the
curriculum. These agencies give further guidance as to the evaluation process of students,
curriculum and outcomes. Once a school of nursing has been accredited by the CCNE, they
must continually show they are meeting these

five
general purposes:


1. To hold nursing programs accountable to the community of interest


the nursing
profession, consumers, employers, higher education, students and their families, nurse
residents


and to one another by ensuring that these program
s have mission statements,
CURRICULAR CONCEPTS


5


goals, and outcomes that are appropriate to prepare individuals to fulfill their expected
roles.

2. To evaluate the success of a nursing program in achieving its mission, goals, and
expected outcomes.

3. To assess the extent to w
hich a nursing program meets accreditation standards.

4. To inform the public of the purposes and values of accreditation and to identify nursing
programs that meet accreditation standards.

5. To foster continuing improvement in nursing programs


and, the
reby, in professional
practice” (American Association of Colleges of Nursing, 2012).

Furthermore, the NLN offers guidance in measuring outcomes from nursing education.
They also offer eight competencies for nurse educators including curriculum review (Nati
onal
League for Nursing, 2005). The components of curriculum evaluation include the following:


Ensures that the curriculum reflects institutional philosophy and mission, current

nursing and health care trends, and community and societal needs so as to pr
epare

graduates for practice in a complex, dynamic, multicultural health care environment

• Demonstrates knowledge of curriculum development including identifying program

outcomes, developing competency statements, writing learning objectives, and selectin
g

appropriate learning activities and evaluation strategies

• Bases curriculum design and implementation decisions on sound educational principles,

CURRICULAR CONCEPTS


6


theory, and research

• Revises the curriculum based on assessment of program outcomes, learner needs, and

societal and health care trends

• Implements curricular revisions using appropriate change theories and strategies

• Creates and maintains community and clinical partnerships that support educational

goals

• Collaborates with external constituencies throug
hout the process of curriculum revision

• Designs and implements program assessment models that promote continuous quality

improvement of all aspects of the program
” (National League for Nursing).

The literature search and these two agencies give broad out
lines of the necessary components of
curriculum review. We will now move into specific findings which can be utilized in the day to
day operations of a nursing school curriculum review process.

Curriculum Committee

Observation


The WCCC had the opportuni
ty to observe a curriculum meeting at the California State
University of Chico School of Nursing.
This committee is always looking at innovative ways at
changing the curriculum and updating it, and to ensure that it is within the bounds of the BRN.
During

the curr
iculum committee

meeting
, student learning objectives,

the new IOM
requirements, and the BSN requirements are always at the forefront of the conversation. The
Curriculum Committee is made up of tenured professors, part time faculty, and one student from
CURRICULAR CONCEPTS


7


each semester of the program. The meetings last an

hour
to two hours and an agenda is

generally
decided upon befor
e the meeting in order to maintain focus
.

The evaluation process for
professors is as follows:

SET
's: Student Evaluation of Teaching

Peer visits: Another seasoned faculty member comes to the classr
oom to observe teaching for
one hour

Evaluat
ion by Personnel Committee: These

take into account the SET's and the Peer review. For
Tenure Track Staff it is every 2nd year and for tenured staff it is every 5 years.

These
evaluations do indeed affect the jo
b of the instruc
tor and the curriculum as well.
If the SET's are
low, the instructor is counseled to re
-
evaluate their teaching process. This is done because low
SET's does affect the outcome of the Retention, Promotion and Tenure possibilities of that
in
structor.


More specifically, faculty members are tasked with evaluating individual student learning
objectives (SLOs) each year. This year, one of the SLOs being evaluated was the critical
thinking abilities of students.
This is an important SLO due to
the high level of clinical
reasoning skills new nurses must possess when they enter the practice area as a new graduate
nurse (Wangensteen, Johansson
,
Björkström, & Nordström,
2010
).
A survey was sent to the
faculty to inquire about their teaching methods
. The survey revealed many faculty were using
PowerPoint

and questioning during class. The faculty member in charge of evaluating this SLO
decided to create an in
-
service to expose the other faculty members to newer teaching strategies
such as the unfold
ing case study and extended questions to help facilitate critical thinking in the
classroom

(I. Morgan, personal communication, April 30, 2012)
. These teaching strategies
might be used next fall and the faculty could be surveyed again to see if they are u
sing more of
CURRICULAR CONCEPTS


8


these to aid the students in developing their critical thinking skills. Another way to measure the
value from this in
-
service would have been to find a tool to evaluate the student’s critical
thinking skills before and after

the strategies we
re implemented
.

There are a few tools available
in the literature for measuring critical thinking including the
Watson and Glaser Critical
Thinking Appraisal (WGCTA)

from 1964 and the California Critical Thinking Disposition

Inventory (CCTDI)

from 1992 (
W
angensteen, Johansson, Björkström, & Nordström, 2010
).
Also, the students could have been asked their opinion in a survey format to determine if the
strategies being used were helpful.

Other Sources


An on
-
line search of other Schools of Nursing (SON) proved most interesting.
In order
to assess quality and plan for curr
iculum improvements, Washington
States School of Nursing
curriculum committee focuses on evaluating three main components. These main
components
consist of the following: student progress, formative evaluation and summative evaluation
(School of Nursing University of Washington, 2012
a
).

The SON at the University of
Washington has extensive surveys of their students, faculty and alumni t
o continually evaluate
satisfaction with the curriculum. They even go so far as to send a survey to the new graduate’s
first employer to evaluate whether the students are performing to the standards they have
developed and if they are equal to other new n
ursing graduates they have in their employment

(School of Nursing University of Washington, 2012b)
.
Evaluating student progress involves
gathering data pertaining to course grades, weekly faculty meetings, clinical evaluations every
quarter, mid
-
term and
final, essentials behaviors completed each quarter in clinical course, and
student
-
related issues discussion by the curriculum committee held on a quarterly basis. The
U
niversity of Washington

formative evaluation consists of the following: weekly faculty
CURRICULAR CONCEPTS


9


meetings, monthly curriculum committee meetings with student representatives, annual
curriculum committee retreat to review gaps, overlaps and any curricular issues. The summative
evaluation portion consists of NCLEX first

time pass rates

and program evalu
ation tools
designed specifically to measure outcomes related to the programs goals.
The process of using
NCLEX pass rates is supported in the literature for curriculum review (Sewell,
Culpa
-
B
ondal, &
Colvin, 2008).


The University of Indianapolis recogniz
es that evaluation is an important part of nursing
and nursing education. Consequently, all faculty are required to complete 10 hours of
educational preparation in the principles and methods of evaluation. The education consists of a
five module program wh
ich reviews evaluation methods used in assessing student progress.
Accurate and valid evaluation of student performance is critical in the education of competent
professional nurses. The five modules consist of the following: Module I: Deviations, types, a
nd
terms related to evaluation
,
Module II: Cognitive, psychomotor, and affective objectives
,
Module
III: Objective and subjective tests and construction of test items
,
Module IV: Overview of
clinical evaluation including legal issues
, and
Module V: Use of
clinical observation guide i
n
simulated clinical situations. This format is extremely comprehensive for the faculty to conduct
and provides for a robust evaluation of the students and ultimately, the performance of the
faculty (Regent of the University of

Minnesota, 2012).





CURRICULAR CONCEPTS


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References

American Association of Colleges of Nursing. (2012).
Mission, values and history.
Retrieved

from:

http://www.aacn.nche.edu/ccne
-
accreditation/about/mission
-
values
-
history


Blood
-
Siegfried, J.,
Short
, N.,
Rapp
, C.,

Hill
,

E
.,
Talbert
,

S
.,
Skinner
,

J
.,

&
Goodwin
,

L
.

(2008).

A rubric for improving

the quality of online courses.
International Journal of

Nursing Education Scholarship, 5
(1).

Lange
, J.,
Ingersoll
,

G
.,
Novotny
,

J
.
M
. (2008, November
-

December).
Transforming the

organizational culture of a school of nursing through
innovative program development.

Journal of Professional Nursing
, 24
(6),
371
-
37
7.

Garrett
,

B
.,
MacPhee
,

M
., &
Jackson
,

C
. (2010, September
-

October).
High
-
fidelity patient

simulation:

conside
rations for effective learning.
Nursing Education Perspectives, 31
(5),

309
-
3
13.

National League for Nursing. (2005). Core competencies of nurse educators. Retrieved from:

http://www.nln.org/facultyprograms/pdf/corecompetencies.pdf

Regents of the

University of Minnesota. (2012).
Evaluation in nursing education
. Retrieved

from:
http://www.nursing.umn.edu/Preceptors/evaluation/Module4/home.html

Sewell, J., Culpa
-
Bondal, F., & Colvin, M. (2008). Nursing program assessment and evaluation:



evidence
-
based decis
ion making improves outcomes.
Nurse Educator 33
(3):109
-
12.

School of Nursing University of Washington. (2012).
Evaluations.

Retrieved from:

http://nursing.uw.edu/academic
-
services/degree
-
programs/bsn/evaluations.html

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11


Sc
hool of Nursing
University of Was
hington. (2012). Retrieved from
:

http://www.son.washington.edu/students/bsn/docs/AlumnusSurvey.pdf

Wangensteen, S., Johansson, I., Björkström, M., & Nordström, G. (2010). Critical thinking



dispositions among newly graduated nurses.
Jour
nal Of Advanced Nursing
,
66
(10),

2170
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2181. doi:10.1111/j.1365
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2648.2010.05282.x