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close this bookThe Elaboration of School Textbooks - Methodological Guide (UNESCO, 1989, 66 p.)
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View the documentAspects of evaluation
View the documentQuestions to be raised in the evaluation of a final manuscript
View the documentGuidelines for evaluation
View the documentThe evaluators
Open this folder and view contentsModalities and criteria for evaluation
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Aspects of evaluation

Aspects which should be evaluated correspond to those defined as determining the quality of textbooks:

- Content
- Pedagogical approach
- Language
- Illustrations

All these aspects are equally important and their level should judged to be at least very satisfactory if the final manuscript is to be approved. Imperfections or an inferior level in one aspect will inevitably have negative repercussions on the others. For example, poor quality illustrations, which are blurred or inaccurate will distract the reader when he tries to relate them to explanations and information contained in the body of the text. Similarly, phrases which are too long and complex, or too many unfamiliar words and terms, can impede comprehension of the text and discourage the pupil's interest in content.

Presentation and composition of the text should also be satisfactory. The author should follow the technical guidelines recommended for presentation and composition and may also ask for guidance and assistance from the publisher.

These aspects of evaluation are, in general, all valid for textbook manuscripts. However, differences do exist, depending upon the discipline under consideration and the year or level of instruction. It is evident, for instance, that content, pedagogical approach, drafting and illustrations for a first year reading primer will not be the same as those for an final year junior school textbook for literary studies and prose. These same aspects will also differ for a mathematics, science or geography textbook. Before applying evaluation criteria, therefore, the textbook manuscript must be situated in relation to the aspects evaluated and its final destination. It can be situated in the following manner:



Pedagogic approach

Year or level of instruction


Type of textbook for who

Chapters III and IV should be referred to for an analysis of the evaluation of these aspects.