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Topics In Brief

All Topics In Brief

Program Evaluation Basics

This edition of ReCAPP focuses on the Basics of Program Evaluation with a particular emphasis on how BDI Logic Models can be used to guide practitioners in developing program evaluation plans.

You will find the new material on this topic under Program Evaluation Basics in the "Theories and Approaches" section. It includes information about the topic and a list of relevant resources. Also included here are links to the following:

  • Slide Presentation. This presentation was adapted from a face-to-face training on program evaluation. The slides provide information, training, and feedback on:
    • impact, outcome and process evaluation
    • writing objectives
    • type of evaluation designs
    • qualitative and quantitative measurement methods
    • constructing good evaluation tools, and
    • evaluation reporting.
  • Creating Better Surveys Worksheet(pdf file). This worksheet will be helpful for applying the information learned in the slide presentation. It provides an example of a survey with several problems in it. After working to find these problems and proposing improvements, you can compare your answers to those on the accompanying answer key.
  • Evaluation Planning Matrices. These matrices, which are provided as downloadable Word documents, are a way to apply what you've learned in the slide presentation and the "Creating Better Surveys" Worksheet. This is where you can record your own impact, outcome and process objectives and their corresponding evaluation designs, measurement methods and questions.
  • Focus group sample protocols. Three focus group protocols — two for teens and one for parents — are provided. They include: a list of materials needed with links to several sample documents such as permission forms and questionnaires; an outline of preparatory tasks; and step-by-step procedures. One was designed as an evaluation tool and the other two as assessment tools. The sample forms are provided as downloadable Word documents so they can be easily adapted to meet your needs. Specifically, the protocols are:
    • sample of focus group protocol for teens used in the Parent-Child Connectedness project
    • sample focus group protocol for parents used in the Parent-Child Connectedness project
    • sample focus group protocol for teens used in the Wait for Sex project
  • Focus Group Guidelines. This valuable list of "how to" guidelines for conducting focus groups was developed as a consequence of facilitating 14 focus groups on parent-child connectedness in support of ETR's Parent-Child Connectedness: Bridging Research and Intervention Design (PCC BRIDGE) project funded by the Annie E. Casey Foundation. It includes general facilitation guidelines as well as specific guidelines for facilitating focus groups and teen groups.
  • A Mock Board Presentation. This activity is designed to give you an opportunity to practice presenting program evaluation findings to your organization's board of directors.

Material with the Portable Document Format (pdf) icon require Adobe Acrobat Reader to view and print them. You can download this free software at:

The slide presentation was developed in Macromedia's Flash MX and requires Macromedia Flash Player. You may download a free version of Flash Player from the Macromedia download site at:

Word documents require the application MicroSoft Word.