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Training Resources and Tools

Introduction to Program Evaluation for Community Organizations 

This workshop is focused on the basics of program evaluation. The session includes information on building stakeholder engagement, evaluation planning, methods, and processes. This workshop is intended for staff with no formal evaluation training and it focuses on helping participants understand the evaluation process and developing awareness and skills for implementing a basic program evaluation in house. Information useful in working with external evaluators is also included. This workshop was co-sponsored by the Alliance for Research in Chicagoland Communities (ARCC) and the Smith Child Health Catalyst. 

Video: Two chapters, total runtime 2 hrs 13 min. 

Introduction to Logic Models for Community Organization Program Evaluation 

This workshop introduces participants to the logic model concept for evaluation, reviews several logic model formats, and shares tips and processes for completing a logic model. This session is designed for those new to program evaluation. This workshop was co-sponsored by the Alliance for Research in Chicagoland Communities (ARCC) and the Smith Child Health Catalyst. 

Video: Two chapters, total runtime 2 hrs 14 min. 

Strategies for disseminating evaluation results: Getting the word out 

Topics for Training:  

  • The benefits of engaging stakeholders and ways to effectively engage them
  • Various methods for communicating findings 
  • The ethics of dissemination and authorship guidelines 

Measuring Physical Activity for Program Evaluation 

Topics for Training: 

  • The different methods for collecting physical activity data 
  • Deciding what method is right for your program 
  • Deep dive into observational methods
    • System for Observing Fitness and Leisure Activity in Youth(SOPLAY)
    • System for Observing Fitness Instruction Time (SOFIT)
  • Supports available to assist with data collection 

Using Focus Groups in Evaluations  

 Topics for Training: 

  • How to tell if a focus group is right for your context 
  • Basic focus group techniques
    • Focus group guide development
    • Facilitation techniques
    • Analytic approaches 

Smith Child Health Catalyst Program Evaluation Resources  

CDC Evaluation Framework and Checklists 

The CDC's framework for evaluating public health programs was released in 1999 and serves as a guide for those conducting program evaluations. The framework organizes the key elements of a successful program evaluation in a step by step manner. This allows users to map their evaluation activities to the framework to increase its organization and ensure maximum usefulness of results. 

The framework documents can be found here. 

Detailed planning checklists for each step in the evaluation framework can be found below. The checklists can be used together or as stand-alone documents. Downloadable PDFs for steps 1-3: