Evaluation

General information

Help with defining criteria, monitoring progress and evaluating your campaign.

Effective campaigns incorporate an evaluation plan as part of the strategic plan, monitoring progress from the very beginning, and adjusting campaign strategies in response to new information along the way. No campaign ever goes exactly as planned. The most important use of evaluation data is to fix things that aren’t working as intended.

It’s also important to be able to report on the status of your campaign’s effectiveness to key stakeholders at any time.

We have included resources in this section to help you design an evaluation plan in order to monitor your campaign at all times.

W.K. Kellogg Foundation Evaluation Handbook (1998)
This handbook provides a framework for thinking about evaluation as a relevant and useful program tool. It was written for project directors who are responsible for the ongoing evaluation of W.K. Kellogg Foundation-funded projects, but it useful for anyone designing and monitoring strategic evaluation programs.

Evaluation should be conducted not only to demonstrate that a project worked, but also to improve the way it works. An evaluation approach should be rigorous in its efforts to determine the worth of a program and to guide program implementation and management, as well as relevant and useful to program practitioners. Although evaluation is useful to document impact and demonstrate accountability, it should also lead to more effective programs, greater learning opportunities, and better knowledge of what works. This Evaluation Handbook is designed to provide a solid base from which to make decisions that ultimately lead to stronger programs and more effective services.

W. K. Kellogg Foundation’s Evaluation Knowledgebase
Nonprofits today are being pressed to demonstrate the effectiveness of their program activities by initiating and completing outcome-oriented evaluation of projects. The Kellogg resources are very extensive and provide practical assistance to nonprofits engaged in the evaluation process process, including an orientation to the underlying principles of “logic modeling” to enhance their program planning, implementation, and dissemination activities. Resources include downloadable toolkits, guides, presentations, and links to additional evaluation materials.

Additional Resources

Children, Youth and Families Education and Research Network (CYFERNET)
CYFERnet’s Evaluation section includes practical tools that you can use to evaluate community-based programs; information on how community programs can be sustained; and assessments of organizational support for work in the areas of children, youth, and families.

Enhancing Program Performance with Logic Models
This website was created by the University of Wisconsin and brings a full web-based course on how to develop logic models and use them for planning and evaluating education and outreach programs.

Guiding Principles for Evaluators
A Report from the American Evaluation Association (AEA) Task Force that articulates a set of principles to guide the professional practice of evaluation and informs the general public about the principles used by professional evaluators.

National Science Foundation’s User-Friendly Handbook for Project Evaluation
This Handbook was developed to provide managers working with the National Science Foundation (NSF) with a basic guide for the evaluation of NSF’s educational programs. It is aimed at people who need to learn more about both what evaluation can do and how to do an evaluation, rather than those who already have a solid base of experience in the field. It builds on firmly established principles, blending technical knowledge and common sense to meet the special needs of NSF and its stakeholders. The Handbook discusses quantitative and qualitative evaluation methods, suggesting ways in which they can be used as complements in an evaluation strategy.

On-line Evaluation Resources Library
This website provides a large collection of plans, reports, and instruments from National Science Foundation evaluations in several content areas of education.