Connect:Transmit monitoring and evaluation

In Connect Transmit, we have used a number of evaluation tools. The main tools used were of the ‘distance travelled’ type: to gauge the development in learners’ (and trainers’) skills and understanding over the course of the project. Two specific tools we used were called ‘Speaking and Listening Star’ and ‘Community Quiz’.

See also on these pages more general resources about evaluation:

 

Why evaluate and monitor?

There are, of course, many different ways that projects can be evaluated.  Sometimes funders will dictate the kind of information that you’ll need to collect.  Often this might be numerical and involve keeping accurate registers and data on individual participants.  It might be a good idea though for you to consider setting up your own monitoring and evaluation processes in order to support your station’s development as a training provider. Here is Dave Chambers of Preston FM on why we need to monitor and evaluate.

Monitoring and evaluation can:

  • Provide constant feedback on the extent to which the learning project is achieving goals
  • Identify potential problems at an early stage and propose possible solutions
  • Monitor the accessibility of the project to the focus population
  • Monitor the efficiency of the different parts of the project and suggest improvements
  • Evaluate the extent to which the project is able to achieve its general objectives
  • Provide guidelines for the planning of future projects
  • Improve project design by reviewing the soundness of project objectives
  • Incorporate views of stakeholders to enhance participation and ownership
  • Show need for mid project adjustments. Monitoring information and experiences tracks progress and highlights any need for changes

Getting started

Before your project even begins think about the main reasons you have for gathering information.  For instance:

      • to provide evidence to current or future funders and stakeholders that the project is achieving its aims
      • to provide feedback to clients and to tailor provision to their identified needs
      • to support overall project evaluation, project development and lessons for the future
      • to provide evidence for clients to use on CVs or to access training, education or job opportunities.

Things to do and/or think about:

      • check if there is any requirement or expectation on the part of project funders, wider stakeholders or managers
      • identify core outcomes and indicators appropriate to your own project, client group and objectives
      • identify any additional outcomes and indicators specific to your particular client group
      • consider the alternative methods of collecting information and select those that best fit your needs and resources
      • decide if the methods chosen are appropriate to your client group as a whole
      • think about how robust the findings will be. How far do they depend on value judgements and how can you guard against any problems this might lead to?

Finally, a word here from Dave Chambers on project management – which he defines as essentially a matter of risk management and planning:

 

See more evaluation resources on these pages (linked at the top of the page). See also a comprehensive handbook on evaluation approaches by the Paul Hamlyn Foundation (who funded Connect:Transmit) here.