George C. Tremblay, PhDDepartment Chair and Professor, and BHI Co-Director
Department of Clinical Psychology
What is Program Evaluation?
Research that helps service agencies make strategic decisions. We invite program administrators and service providers to consider questions such as:
- At a conceptual level, and in the language of relevant professional literature, what is it that your agency aspires to do? This conversation may include developing a graphic program model, sometimes called a logic model.
- Who are your stakeholders: who cares about what you do (or, who do you WANT to careclients, funders, community supporters, administrators in your own institution)?
- What might be some (potentially) observable or measurable indicators that your agency is accomplishing what you aspire to?
- Of the indicators you identified, which ones would your stakeholders find most compelling, and how difficult would it be for us to gather qualitative or quantitative data about them? In other words, which investment of your program evaluation resources would yield the biggest bang for the buck?
Web resources for program evaluation
Carter McNamara’s Basic Guide to Program Evaluation
The National Science Foundation’s User-Friendly Handbook for Program Evaluation
Univ of Wisconsin Cooperative Extension’s guide to using logic models
David Fetterman’s Empowerment Evaluation blog