Glossary

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A B C D E F G H I K L M N O P Q R S T U V W Y Z
  • DEFINITION

    Implies the enhancement of capabilities of people and institutions to improve their competence and problem solving capacities in a sustainable manner.

    UNESCO Thesaurus

    EXAMPLE OF USE

    Where a programme is financed by external agencies, the fifth option may also involve the issue of ownership and control: should the local agency – whether governmental or non-governmental – be responsible for the samples, or should the financier accept them? Currently, the general policy is to encourage local ownership and control in the interests of promoting capacity-building, although external specialists are often imported to help with the design and analysis (Oxenham, 2008: 112).

    Oxenham, J. 2008. Effective literacy programmes: options for policy-makers. Fundamentals of Educational Planning 91. Paris: UNESCO-IIEP.

  • DEFINITION

    The catchment area is the geographical area served by  a school. (In order to delineate it, pinpoint pupils' homes and outline the smallest area covering all of them).

    Hallak, J. 1977. Planning the location of schools: an instrument of educational policy. Paris: UNESCO-IIEP.

    EXAMPLE OF USE

    There  is very  little difficulty in interpreting  the objective of opening schools in such a way that all children enjoy equal opportunity of access to them.  Indeed it seems to be a basic element of all policies to reduce disparities.  Generally, though, accessibility is defined  solely in terms of  physical  accessibility.  To measure  this we would have to take into account distance, relief, communications, and  the time taken to travel between school and home, bearing  in mind available means of transport.  The problem therefore consists  in determining  the catchment areas of existing schools  in order to identify, on the one hand, the population that lies outside  these catchment areas and is therefore deprived of any education service  for reasons of physical accessibility, and, on the other hand, to estimate, inside the catchment areas  (i.e. in the areas reached by the school system) the proportion of school-age  children  actually managing to find places in the schools (Caillods, et al: 118).

    Caillods, F.; Casselli, J. Ta Ngoc Châu; Porte, G. 1983. School mapping and micro-planning in education. Training materials in educational planning, administration and facilities. Paris: UNESCO-IIEP.

  • DEFINITION

    The child-friendly school model is based on the simple premise that schools can and should operate in the best interests of the child. Educational environments must be safe, healthy and protective, staffed with trained teachers, equipped with adequate resources and offering conditions appropriate for learning.

    UNICEF. 2009. Quality education and child-friendly schools. Actions for children Issue 5.

    EXAMPLE OF USE

    If education systems are fully inclusive, quality education can be extended to all groups as a matter of routine. Bringing this about requires systems-level interventions. Instead of just ‘doing’ child-friendly schools in local communities, CFS models are ‘sold’ as good practice for the entire education system (UNICEF, 2009: 6).

    UNICEF. 2009. Child-friendly schools manual. New York: UNICEF.

  • DEFINITION

    Techniques used in the classroom or in any other educational setting to create propitious learning conditions; includes discipline, management, sitting arrangement.

    UNESCO Thesaurus

    EXAMPLE OF USE

    Governments should take active steps to strengthen teaching in early grades. Teacher education systems need to be reinvigorated to assure the success of such interventions. Pre-service training programmes appear to be paying insufficient attention to the teaching of reading. Courses need to increase the emphasis on effective classroom techniques. In-service training programmes engaging teachers in an interactive way can ensure that knowledge is converted into better classroom practice. Benefits are likely to be most noticeable where training is combined with other interventions, such as improved instructional materials (UNESCO, 2012: 135).

    UNESCO. 2012. Youth and Skills: Putting Education to Work, EFA Global Monitoring Report, 2012. Paris: UNESCO.

  • DEFINITION

    The ideal number of pupil-years required for a cohort to complete a level or cycle of education (e.g. the primary level) should there be no repetition nor drop-out, divided by the total number of pupil-years actually spent by the same cohort.

    UNESCO. 2001. Latin America and the Caribbean (Spanish and Portuguese-Speaking Countries): Statistics and Indicators on Education, 1998/99; Regional Report. Paris: UNESCO.

    EXAMPLE OF USE

    The third variable, the coefficient of efficiency, is obtained by dividing the number of pupil-years normally required to complete the primary cycle by the number of pupil-years actually spent. Thus, higher coefficients indicate greater efficiency, pupils spending on average less time to complete the primary education cycle. Although these data do not show the disparities between urban and rural areas, there appears to be a weak inverse correlation between the efficiency factors and the rurality of a country. In any case, the data do illustrate how pervasive the problem of primary schooling ‘wastage’ is, rural pupils typically spending far too much time in primary education (IIEP and FAO, 2003: 88).

    IIEP and FAO. 2003. Education for rural development: towards new policy responses. Paris: UNESCO-IIEP.

  • DEFINITION

    Schools open beyond ordinary hours for use of students, their parents and the community.

    UNESCO Thesaurus.

    EXAMPLE OF USE

    Community schools have been established as a means of providing quality education for children living in small rural hamlets in Egypt, where primary schools were previously non-existent and rural girls were particularly deprived. Modelled after the BRAC experience in Bangladesh, the schools are located in the communities themselves, and hidden costs – from uniforms to school bags are removed. Local ownership is a key feature, with communities donating space, ensuring that children come to class and managing the schools through a local education committee established in each hamlet. Young women with intermediate degrees are recruited locally and trained as facilitators to provide quality education through interactive techniques. And the content of education is made relevant to local needs and interests, including health, environment, agriculture and local history. Graduates from community schools are eligible for exams in government schools at the end of grades 3 and 6 (UNICEF, 2008:91).

    UNESCO; UNICEF. 2007. A Human Rights-Based Approach to Education for All: A Framework for the Realization of Children’s Right to Education and Rights within Education. New York: UNICEF.

  • DEFINITION

    Comparative study of current educational theory and practice in different countries.

    UNESCO Thesaurus

    EXAMPLE OF USE

    Provision should be made at the national, regional and international levels for the regular exchange, making use of contemporary information and communication technologies, of information, documentation, and materials obtained from research and development, in particular: (a) publications concerning comparative education, psychological and pedagogical problems affecting general and technical and vocational education, and current trends ;(b) information and documentation concerning curriculum development, methods and materials, study opportunities abroad, and employment opportunities, including human resource requirements, working conditions and social benefits (2002:39).

    UNESCO.2002.Records of the General Conference, 31st session, Paris, 15 October to 3 November 2001, v. 1: Resolutions. Paris: UNESCO

  • DEFINITION

    [Extra lessons] for deprived or disadvantaged students.

    EXAMPLE OF USE

    Migrant education is a term adopted in countries such as Australia or Germany to refer to the initial strategies responding to the needs of newly-arrived students (Luchtenberg, 2004: 47). It consists of compensatory programmes targeting only migrant students and their perceived deficits, where the long-term objective is the students’ assimilation (Inglis, 2008: 50).

  • DEFINITION

    Refers to specific teaching skills of interacting with students in classrooms, based on the clear definition of the knowledge, skills and attitudes to be acquired.

    EXAMPLE OF USE

    The introduction of competency-based training (CBT): CBT gives more emphasis to trainees’ ability to master specifi c practical tasks or competencies than to the level or type of certifi cation, or length of training, they have received. CBT curricula are developed in accordance with the identifi ed skills needs of the private sector (trade and commercial associations, employer associations, and industry) and delivered through assessed modules of different competencies (King and Palmer, 2010: 72).

  • DEFINITION

    Educational programmes that children and young people are legally obliged to attend, usually defined in tersm of a number of grades or an age range, or both.

    UNESCO. Education for all: literacy for life; EFA global monitoring report, 2006. Paris: UNESCO, 2006.

    EXAMPLE OF USE

    If practice in most countries is followed, then the particular age(s) or grade levels(s) selected for a national assessment will fall within the period of compulsory education (most likely at primary-school level); furthermore, students will have been in school long enough foreducation to have had an impact. (Kellaghan and Greaney, 2002: 86).

    Kellaghan, Thomas, et Vincent Greaney. Using assessment to improve the quality of education. Fundamentals of Educational Planning 71. Paris: UNESCO-IIEP, 2001.

  • DEFINITION

    Essential or basic parts of the curriculum of an educational institution that are studied by all its students even though each has a choice of optional subjects in addition.

    UNESCO Thesaurus

    EXAMPLE OF USE

    According to the EFA Global Monitoring Report 2005, one way to move towards a relevant, balanced set of aims is to analyse the curriculum in terms of inclusion. An inclusive approach to curriculum policy recognizes that while each learner has multiple needs – even more so in situations of vulnerability and disadvantage – everyone should benefit from a commonly accepted basic level of quality education. This underlines the need for a common core curriculum that is relevant for the learner while being taught according to flexible methods (UNESCO, 2009:19).

    UNESCO. 2009. Policy guidelines on inclusion in education. Paris: UNESCO

  • DEFINITION

    Cost-effectiveness analysis refers to a method for combining appropriate measures of outcomes with costs so that program and policy alternatives can be ranked according to their effectiveness relative to resource use. It differs from its close relation, cost-benefit analysis, which requires monetary measures of impact relative to costs. (Levin, 2001: 56-57)

    EXAMPLE OF USE

    Cost-effectiveness analysis consists of three steps: (a) The costs of the alternatives must be carefully measured, for example expenditure on teacher salaries, books and learning materials in each type of school; (b) the outcomes or educational effectiveness of the alternatives must be measured, for example by standardized test scores of pupils in each school; finally, (c) costs and effectiveness measures are combined to calculate a cost-effectiveness ratio, for example by dividing the effectiveness of each alternative by its cost to show the unit cost of achieving a particular objective, such as a 1 per cent improvement in pupil achievement. Such a ratio is described in one cost-effectiveness study as "the achievement gain per dollar spent" (Harbison and Hanushek, 1992: 140). The most cost-effective alternative can then be identified - for example the school that produces the greatest improvement in pupil achievement for a given cost or alternatively the school where pupils achieve the required examination results at least cost (Woodhall, 2004: 26).

  • DEFINITION

    The term 'cost-benefit analysis' implies a systematic comparison of the magnitude of the costs and benefits of a form of investment in order to assess its economic profitability (Woodhall, 2004: 24).

    Woodhall, Maureen. Cost-benefit analysis in educational planning. Fundamentals of Educational Planning 80. Paris: UNESCO-IIEP, 2004.

    EXAMPLE OF USE

    Cost-benefit analysis (or rate-of-return analysis, which is the type of cost-benefit analysis most frequently applied to education) provides a means of appraising these future benefits in the light of the costs that must be incurred in the present. The purpose of the analysis is to provide a measure of the expected yield of the investment as a guide to rational allocation of resources. Thus any private businessman who is contemplating investing in physical machinery must make a cost-benefit calculation to assess the likely profitability of the investment. In recent years, economists have paid increasing attention to the application of cost-benefit analysis to public investment and sophisticated techniques have been developed for measuring the costs and benefits of, for example, water resource and transport projects. Such projects are clearly analogous to private investments in physical capital and it is not surprising that techniques that are useful to the businessman should also prove useful to governments in making investment decisions (Woodhall, 2004: 24).

    Woodhall, Maureen. Cost-benefit analysis in educational planning. Fundamentals of Educational Planning 80. Paris: UNESCO-IIEP, 2004.

  • DEFINITION

    Current expenditure includes final consumption expenditure (e.g. compensation of employees, consumption of intermediate goods and services, consumption of fixed capital, and military expenditure), property income paid, subsidies, and other current transfers paid (e.g. social security, social assistance, pensions and other welfare benefits).

    EXAMPLE OF USE

    It is usually fairly easy to obtain estimates of annual current expenditure on salaries and purchase of materials. It is more difficult to estimate the annual value of buildings and equipment. If the buildings are rented, the annual rent can be used to represent the value of the capital resources used during the year (Woodhall, 2004: 31)

  • DEFINITION

    Inventory of activities related to the design, organisation and planning of an education or training action, including definition of learning objectives, content, methods (including assessment) and material, as well as arrangements for training teachers and trainers.

    CEDEFOP. 2014. Terminology of European education and training policy. 2nd ed. Luxemburg: Publications Office of the European Union. 

    EXAMPLE OF USE

    Curriculum is, in the simplest terms, a description of what, why, how and when students should learn. The curriculum is not,of course, an end in itself. Rather, it seeks both to achieve worthwhile and useful learning outcomes for students, and to realize a range of societal demands and government policies. It is in and through the curriculum that key economic, political, social and cultural questions about the aims, purposes, content and processes of education are resolved. The policy statement and technical document that represent the curriculum reflect also a broader political and social agreement about what a society deems of most worth – that which is of sufficient importance to pass on to its children (Stabback, 2016: 8).

    Stabback, Philippe. 2016. What makes a quality curriculum? Current and critical issues in the curriculum and learning 2. Geneva: UNESCO-IBE.