Types of performance measures

In this post, I’m talking about how to write good performance measures. First, a clarification. I use the term performance measures to include all the output and outcome measures that can be used in a logic model or a program evaluation. There are a lot of different terms for these things. It’s very important that…

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A close relationship with staff as a measure of program quality

It is important in many programs that the participants form close and trusting relationships with staff or volunteers. In mentoring, in particular, the formation of a trusting relationship is crucial to all the outcomes that will follow. So, program managers are eager to include that in their logic models and there are simple ways to…

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Working with youth advisers

I always enjoy interviewing youth. I find them insightful, frank, smart, and funny. But working with youth advisers to plan interviews with youth participants can make the interview process go even better.

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Questions and answers on focus groups

I recently had the opportunity to present a workshop on running focus groups for a group of parent advocates. They were preparing to hold focus groups with parents to learn about their engagement with their children’s schools. The participants asked excellent and thoughtful questions that I wanted to share more widely. Here are some of…

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Randomized Control Trials: Really Gold?

A randomized control trial (RCT) is a study design in which participants are divided into two groups and one of those groups is given an intervention (the treatment group) while the other is not (the control group). It’s often referred to as “the gold standard” for research design. But for the evaluation of human service…

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On writing good performance measures: Who cares?

Sometimes, when I’m working with staff to document their program’s performance measures, I notice that they come up with some very specific descriptions of what it takes to run a quality program. For example, ideal staffing or indicators of an efficient process. I’ll call these kinds of metrics process indicators. They are checklist items, or…

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