Decide if you will use an existing marriage and relationship education program curriculum or develop your own.
- Existing marriage curriculum. Some marriage and relationship educators choose to use education programs that have already been developed and evaluated. There are many existing marriage and relationship curricula tailored for couples, singles, youth and many other specific populations.
- New relationship curriculum. If you are considering developing your own curriculum, be sure to:
- Decide on your program’s goals and objectives.
- Determine if the goals and objectives are unique enough to justify the time required to develop a new curriculum. If so, you will still need to conduct a thorough review of existing curricula.
- Ensure your audience needs the new program (through conducting a community assessment).
Here are a few things to consider during your decision-making process.
- Personal philosophy and interest. It is important to do what you like, what interests you, and what you believe in. If you compromise in your choice of curriculum, it will show in your ability to connect with your audience.
- How the program will be delivered:
- Workshops, seminars, retreats.
- High school, college, and community courses.
- Lectures and speeches.
- Distribution of video and audio tapes, CDs, and DVDs.
- Web sites.
- Books, magazines, pamphlets, news articles, and newsletters.
- Specific content of the program:
- Communication skills.
- Effective problem solving skills.
- Expectations about marriage.
- Commitment to marriage.
- Couple and family finances.
- Role allocation decisions (e.g., housework and child care).
- Effectively balancing individual needs.
- Domestic violence awareness.
- Emotional intelligence.
Once you have decided on the right curriculum and format for your program, consider including activities to help illustrate the core content. Check out the Facilitator Toolkit for great ideas on how to liven up your curriculum with fun activities.
Additional Resources for Choosing Courses & Activities
- A Guide to Low-Cost Curricula and Resources: Marriage and Relationship, Fatherhood and Parenting, and Financial Education
- The Marriage Education Curriculum Assessment Guide