Evaluation 2018: Speaking Truth to Power

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Discovering Truth While Sailing Out To SEA-Support Evaluation Activities: An internal voyage at MaineHealth Corporate to evaluate individual and departmental needs for using program evaluation.

Session Number: 2146
Track: Internal Evaluation
Session Type: Poster
Tags: Evaluative Thinking, Innovative Designs, internal evaluation, Needs Assessment, organizational capacity building, Program Evaluation Standards
First Author or Discussion Group Leader: Lori Travis [Program Manager - MaineHealth Center for Tobacco Independence]
Time: Oct 31, 2018 (06:30 PM - 08:00 PM)
Room: Poster 148

Audience Level: All Audiences

Session Abstract (150 words): 

Background: The Evaluation Manager for the Center for Tobacco Independence sought to learn if other departments used program evaluation. Initially, 12 interviews with department leaders on this topic occurred.  But there was an opportunity to speak to a wider audience through an novel survey tool. 

Methods: The development and testing of the SEA Survey.took about four months. The final online SEA Survey had 27 questions and was sent in a newsletter link to all 250 employees. 

Results: About 40% responded, and 63% had leadership roles. While 49% knew their job description included an expectation to use evaluation, about 33% were unaware. Over half, 57% agreed there was no adequate system in place for internal evaluation support.  Many were not familiar with the CDC Framework, or how to conduct simple data analyses. There was great interest in receiving training on a variety of evaluation topics. 

Conclusions: While managers understand that they are accountable for tracking progress towards their program goals, the truth remains there is a wide gap in evaluation knowledge and resources to assess outcomes. The next most powerful step to address this gap would be to increase capacity for developing an internal system to Support Evaluation Activities-SEA!

 



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