Importance of evaluation in geography are as follows:
Once a teacher has a clear idea of what she will teach and how she will teach it, she is concerned with knowing to what extent children learn from her lessons.
Evaluation is a continuous process which is an integral part of teaching. It is not merely a test at the end of a geography lesson or unit. Instead, evaluation goes on constantly during lessons and units and is clearly related to the teacher’s goal and points of view on geography teaching.
Besides being a continuous experience, evaluation is cumulative. A cumulative geography record should be kept for all children. If such a record is available then his geography exposure can be quickly and easily seen.
The recent trends in learning and evaluation link them to behavioral objectives. According to behaviorist psychology learning is defined as a change in the behaviour of an individual that can be described in terms of observable and measurable performance. The changes in behaviour are affected by providing experiences and through teaching.
The test efficiency of teaching, to judge the progress of students and to discover their achievements and evaluate the whole school system, we require some sort of measuring tools. These tools are tests or examinations.
Tests are essential to grade and rank pupils, however if evaluation is used merely to indicate areas of geography to which children have been exposed or for classifying and categorizing students, a great value is lost.
The same loss occurs if evaluation is interpreted only as arriving at numerical or alphabetical ratings for report cards. In this way much of the positive use of evaluation as a means of teaching and learning could be destroyed.
Effective instructional planning and evaluation of student’s performance have always stressed upon the statement of instructional objectives so that they are of great help to the student. According to Muller, an instructionally usable objective must state the intended outcome in terms of the terminal behaviour of students.
Terminal behaviour here stands for the behaviour of students after the class-room instructions and evaluation can be made if the learning outcomes are carefully specified. By coupling continuous evaluation with immediate application of what has been learned, the teacher can provide for:
(i) The stimulation of students who learn rapidly to greater growth toward goals by application of advanced works.
(ii) The identification of specific weaknesses and difficulties in functional understanding (concepts, principles, generalization) and the needed retouching of varied activities skills or problem solving abilities, and
(iii) The clarification, modification or complete alternation of the goals as needed for the unit.
Evaluation, teaching and learning are the three corners of the education system. Evaluation is concerned with finding out how far students have learned as a consequence of teaching.
There are two kinds of evaluation depending upon whether the comparison of student is made with some absolute performance standard or with other students of a given group. These are known as criterion referenced evaluation and norm referenced evaluation.