Evaluation 2015: Exemplary Evaluations in a Multicultural World

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Quick but Not dirty: How to Plan and Implement a Quality Needs Assessment in Six Weeks

Session Number: 2796
Track: Needs Assessment
Session Type: Panel
Tags: Needs Assessment
Session Chair: Maurya West Meiers [World Bank]
Presenter 1: Ryan Watkins [George Washington University]
Presenter 3: Joy Behrens [World Bank]
Time: Nov 12, 2015 (07:00 AM - 07:45 AM)
Room: Plaza A

Abstract 1 Title: Needs Assessment Implementation Guide - For Quick Assessments
Presentation Abstract 1: A simple guide is presented that provides the major considerations and tasks that should be completed. The guide focuses on four major categories of activities, each defining an important component of the overall assessment.
1. Partner commitment: Gain and maintain the commitment of partners to support your needs assessment.
2. Planning (for desired results): Define the desired results at the strategic, tactical, and operational levels - for the important comparison of current and desired performance. Do not assume that desired results are clear or that adequate indictors and measures are available.
3. Data collection (on current results): Defining needs (that is, gaps in results) requires data regarding the current achievements with parallel indicators and measures of the desired results. Provided are tips in having an efficient data collection process.
4. Process management: Organize and administer your needs assessment.
Abstract 2 Title: Tools and Techniques for Data Collection, Analysis, and Decision-making
Presentation Abstract 2: There are many possible tools and techniques for your needs assessment. But how do you know what they are and how to use them? The panelist presents a list of potential tools and techniques for you to consider using. Each of these will have a bite-sized (3-5 page) summary available (electronically) for you to learn more about each technique on your tablet or back at your office. Among them are interviews, focus groups, root cause analysis, SWOT+, 2 × 2 matrix decision aids, scenarios, concept mapping, nominal group technique, pair-wise comparison, and tabletop analysis (plus others).
Abstract 3 Title: Using Multi-Criteria Analysis to Select Tools and Techniques for Your Needs Assessment
Presentation Abstract 3: Selecting which tools and techniques you should use during your needs assessment will depend on several factors. By rating each of the factors individually, you can attain a quality estimate of which tools and techniques that are going to be of the most value. There are, unfortunately, no scientific formulas
that guarantee success although assessing each of the factors will help
you decide which tools and techniques will be most helpful. The panelist will use a case to demonstrate how multi-criteria analysis can be used to rank tools and techniques against the following sample criteria: appropriateness, costs and benefits, feasibility, acceptability, and experience.
Audience Level: Advanced

Session Abstract: 

You want to conduct a needs assessment but don’t know where to start and you are time constrained?  Completing a comprehensive needs assessment in a short period of time requires a fair amount of planning and flexibility, but can be done, and in a quality manner.   In this session the panelists will introduce you to three aids to help you get it done.  The three aids include (a) a needs assessment implementation guide, designed with a six week timeframe in place (adjustable according to your needs); (b) an outline of tools and techniques (methodological approaches for data collection, analysis and decision-making) that you might want to consider, and (c) a guide to selecting the tools and techniques that we offer, using an applied multi-criteria analysis approach to help you select the tools and techniques.


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Cancellation Policy: Refunds less a $50 fee will be granted for requests received in writing prior to 11:59 PM EDT October 6, 2015. Email cancellation requests to registration@eval.org. Fax request to (202) 367-2173. All refunds are processed after the meeting. After October 6, 2015 all sales are final.