ERIC Number: ED214949
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1978-Nov
Defensible Educational Goals and Needs-Assessment Strategies. Studies in Evaluation and Decision Making. Work Unit 3: Philosophic Inquiry into Evaluation.
Ellett, Frederick S., Jr.; Shumener, Betty M.
Many difficulties exist in establishing defensible educational objectives on the basis of student and community needs. Needs assessment strategies differ in subject matter, not in method. Preference, or data collection, is the first phase followed by an evaluation of actual conditions. The strategies concentrate on the "needs" of desire. Preference data will not enable educators to determine defensible goals. Six concepts of "need" to be analyzed are obligation, subsistence, required means, useful means, "need" of desire and of conative dispositions. Only certain "needs" have ethical implications about what ought to be done. Every need of desire does not have to be fulfilled. The authors conclude that since prominent needs-assessment strategies rely mainly on needs of desire, they cannot determine defensible educational objectives. Different techniques and principles must be incorporated into the strategies to determine defensible goals. The prominent strategies must be modified to establish defensible educational goals. The ultimate worth of an educational program depends on the worth of its objectives. The authors feel the prominent needs assessment strategies are in urgent need of modification and reform. (DWH)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. of Education (DHEW), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: California Univ., Los Angeles. Center for the Study of Evaluation.
Note: For related documents, see ED 212 668 and TM 820 089-090.