Evaluation can feel like a monster under the bed: scary and always lurking.
In five years of working with nonprofits at the Evaluation Lab, we have thought a lot about that evaluation monster, and how to transform it into a helpful workhorse.
We have found that an accurate logic model can really help organizations begin to get evaluation under control. The logic model is a one-page description of the organization that articulates underlying program assumptions, external challenges, resources, activities, outputs and outcomes. Most organizations can develop a draft of a logic model in an hour or two. The logic model then becomes a guide for evaluation activities that will track all of the outputs and outcomes.
My favorite Evaluation Lab principle is to “Measure What Matters,” and its corollary, “Everything can be measured.” That’s where rubrics come in. Rubrics articulate different levels of performance for the purpose of documenting outputs and outcomes that are essential to an organization, but cannot be easily quantified. Examples are: caring interactions, empowerment, renewed purpose, and changing life trajectories.
Learn more about Logic Models and Measuring What Matters with Evaluation Lab founder, Dr. Melissa Binder, on February 4, 2020, from 9am to 11am at the Center for Nonprofit Excellence.
Learn more about the Evaluation Lab here: http://evallab.unm.edu/
Learn about the Evaluation Lab’s 5-Day Summer Institute here: http://evallab.unm.edu/for-organizations/summer-institute--learning-community.html