Evaluating courseware: a need for more context bound evaluations?
Australian Council for Computers in Education
Learning and Development Services Centre
RD Strategic and Commercial Projects
This paper reviews what different commentators have written about the evaluation of educational courseware, especially the recent suggestion that more 'context-bound' evaluations are needed. We draw on our experience of such an evaluation and hypothesise on the reasons for the lack of such evaluations. Examples of context-bound evaluations include an evaluation of the Climate courseware, developed by the Education Department of Western Australia some years ago, to illustrate the approach. This is contrasted by a desktop evaluation of courseware of the same name Climate, developed in the UK with a similar kind of context-bound evaluation of Where in the World is Carmen Sandiago? Reviews of the courseware From Alice to Ocean, The Gold Adventure, of context-bound evaluations are provided for illustrative the value of context-bound evaluations.