Demographic data on a survey: Why to collect it and what to do with it

When we’re conducting a survey for program evaluation, we have probably all been told to collect some basic demographic data on every survey, but what data and why? The most important thing you can do with your demographic data is to demonstrate that the people who responded to your survey represent – in some basic…

Implementing surveys in program evaluation: Informed consent

In program evaluation, we often don’t have to go through and IRB or ethics review before we conduct a survey. That means we are responsible for conducting an ethical survey ourselves. The consent process is one area where it’s easy to make mistakes that can have real ethical implications. Here, I outline some common pitfalls…

Some useful (and very readable) guides to building logic models

The basis of an internal evaluation program for a nonprofit organization is clear logic models. The first thing to know about logic models is there is no single right template. You’ll want to try out a few and see what works best for your program and your organization.    Here are a handful of short…

Better survey results: Sampling

Whether its for a research project or a program evaluation, one of the hardest things about implementing a survey is understand who you should have respond to it. A survey is only a useful method of gathering data if you have planned carefully about your sample. The goal is to make sure that the way…

Better survey results: Likert scales (or ratings scales) and how to interpret them

A very common and useful question type in survey research is the Likert scale. That’s the kind that asks the respondent to agree or disagree with a statement, or rate the extent to which they liked something. They are used a lot in program evaluation or simple feedback forms, where we ask participants to report…

Demographic data on a survey: Why to collect it and what to do with it

We have probably all been told to collect some basic demographic data on every survey, but what data and why? The most important thing you can do with your demographic data is to demonstrate that the people who responded to your survey represent – in some basic ways – the people that you want to…