Sheila B Robinson

Reflections of an everyday educator/program evaluator/professional developer…LEARNER


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Outputs are for programs. Outcomes are for people.

A recent experience reviewing a professional organization’s conference proposals for professional development sessions reminded me of the challenge program designers/facilitators encounter in identifying and articulating program outcomes. Time after time, I read “outcome” statements such as: participants will view video cases…, participants will hear how we approached…, participants will have hands-on opportunities to…, participants will experience/explore…and so on. What are these statements describing? Program activities. Program outputs. What are they not describing? Outcomes.  Continue reading

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Ask a Brilliant Question, Get an Elegant Answer?

With a properly-framed question, finding an elegant answer becomes almost straightforward.

-Stephen Wunker, Asking the Right Question

Here’s what every successful leader, coach, marketer, or teacher knows: You cannot understate the importance of asking the right questions.

It’s no different for evaluators.

Evaluation questions form the foundation of solid evaluations, while also serving to frame and focus the work. Starting with the right questions can impact the effectiveness and appropriateness of key programmatic decisions that rest on evaluation results. In fact, clearly defined evaluation questions are part and parcel to a successful evaluation – that is, one that is actionable and is used.  Continue reading