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Curriculum Development and Frameworks
Dr. R. A. NeSmith
Steps to Conducting a Needs Assessment
1. Planning to plan: charting means and ends
2. Goal derivation
3. Goal validation
4. Goal prioritisation
5. Goal translation
6. Validation of performance objectives (outcomes/competencies)
7. Goal reprioritisation
8. Futuristic input in goal ranking
9. Rerank goals
10. Select testing instruments or evaluative strategies for assessing the current.
11. Collate data gathered.
12. Develop initial gap or “need statement”
13. Prioritize gap statements according to step four
14. Publish list of gap statements
Post Needs Assessment Steps
1. Interpolate gaps by program and level
2. Conduct diagnostic/planning sessions to develop implementation strategies to meet identified .... .needs
3. Budget for implementation strategies
4. Fund strategies
5. Implement strategies
6. Reassess gaps via feedback
7. Repeat steps of needs assessment process

The point here is not to sell the reader on one particular format or plan of attack, but to emphasize that needs assessment, curriculum development and curriculum reconstruction are systematic processes that continually require upgrading. If there is more than one way to skin a cat, then there must be a couple dozen ways to approach curriculum construction/reconstruction. Too often educators are intimidated and afraid they will look “dumb” or out of vogue if they do not perform tasks just as their neighbor. If each school is uniquely special and different, then there may be justification for tailoring the curriculum process, as well as tailoring the curriculum. That is not a license to be unprofessional or intellectually sloppy, but it does mean that uniqueness has a price. Notice another approach for the planning of a needs assessment, called the Madison model.