This presentation will review what program evaluation is and will discuss the benefits and challenges of integrating evaluation into the work nonprofits do. We will review ways to overcome the challenges of evaluation and will discuss how to start planning an evaluation.
This presentation is intended to be a broad overview of program evaluation and to encourage participants to consider incorporating evaluation into the everyday workings of their organizations. Our discussion should demystify some of the intimidating language around evaluation. We will discuss the benefits of program evaluation (such as accountability, developing expertise, identifying what works and what doesn’t, etc) and how to address the challenges (cost, staff capacity and desire, lack of experience, etc). Participants will be able to use this information to argue for more (and more thoughtful) evaluation within their organizations. I will review different types of evaluation (including process and outcome evaluation) and discuss why and when these types of evaluation could be used. I will then review the steps to evaluation using a sample evaluation plan. We will not review the entire evaluation plan but participants will be able to understand the process of evaluation and will have the means to begin planning their own evaluations.