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How to write a rationale statement

Updated March 23, 2017

A rationale statement outlines the reasons for an activity or a decision. Many educators use a rationale to explain why a given component of a curriculum was selected. In an effort to make teaching more transparent for both students and parents, a rationale provides background information and discusses the foreseen benefits and potential challenges of a classroom activity.

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  1. Provide the name of the work or material the activity will focus on, such as a website. If discussing a literary work, include bibliographic information, such as the title, author name, publication date, publisher and edition number.

  2. Identify the target audience, including the age group the activity is suitable for and class type, such as special education.

  3. Summarise the contents of the material. Use your professional and practical knowledge to discuss the impact you expect it to have on the students.

  4. Describe the objectives for using the material.

  5. Indicate how the material will be used, such as individual or group study, and explain how it will achieve the stated objectives.

  6. Identify any problems that could arise. Suggest and describe possible solutions to these problems.

  7. Suggest alternative works students might read and briefly justify your choices.

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About the Author

Aksana Nikolai is a graduate of the New York Institute of Technology with a bachelor's degree in language studies and international affairs. Nikolai is currently working in online marketing and communications. She has been writing since 2008, specializing in made-for-Web content and maintaining her fashion and beauty blog.

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