Evidence-based practice utilizes a variety of research methods to gather evidence as to the efficacy of a program’s effectiveness, or cost effectiveness. According to your text, “Sound research and its applications, although not guarantees of perfect policies and programs, are extremely useful tools in developing sound social policies and programs” (p. 281). Additionally, we read that evaluation research is different from “basic” research in that evaluation research is based on reality factors in the field and can answer the question: Is this program achieving its goals within the cost estimates?
In this first assignment, you will create a fictional “how to” guide in which you will analyze the steps pertinent to effective program assessment. Specifically, you will:
- Explain the parts of the program evaluation, and how one would carry out a program evaluation.
- Explain the steps of the program evaluation and what the program evaluator would want to measure / evaluate.
Your fictional “how to” guide is intended to provide a step-by-step explanation of the components related to evaluating programs; you will not be conducting an assessment as part of the assignment. An example of a program evaluation and the research format is given in the Evaluation Strategies for Human Service Programs. Your example can be any of the typical health and services areas including: hospitals, nursing homes, clinic for substance abuse, counseling clinics, Salvation Army, Red Cross, homes for the homeless, special school programs, crisis centers and social support. Program evaluation can include a variety of different research approaches and may also include acquiring a great deal of data. As you view the sample PowerPoint presentation, keep in mind the information requirements to carry out a program evaluation. Certainly the connections among program outcomes, the activities of the program, and consequential outcomes constitute the key model of any program evaluation.