AEA365 | A Tip-a-Day by and for Evaluators

TAG | adult learning

Welcome to the Chicagoland Evaluation Association’s (CEA) week of AEA 365. We are Asma Ali, President and Leah C. Neubauer, Past President of CEA. CEA begin many years ago as a forum for evaluation professionals and students in the Chicagoland area to network, exchange ideas and knowledge, and participate in professional development activities that promote excellence in evaluation.

CEA as an AEA Local Affiliate

As the lead post for this week, we offer insights and resources about AEA Local Affiliates. Local Affiliates are our linkage to a network of other local evaluators and evaluations. CEA has benefitted tremendously in the last year from its participation in Local Affiliate activities. Our interactions with the Local Affiliate Groups have supported our learning about successful affiliate strategies, facilitated new programming and professional connections, and introduced us to inspiring evaluators throughout AEA. As a result, CEA has expanded programming, updated its communications strategy, and revitalized its member rosters.

Affiliates as Evaluator Learning Spaces

As evaluators, how do we create opportunities to learn, grow and enrich our practice?  What happens in our post-formal education and training lives to facilitate new learning and growth?   Through the lens of adult and continuing education, affiliates function as local communities of practice (CoP) and homegrown entities that promote various types of learning and growth within and among evaluators.

CEA member blogs this week

One benefit of our participation has been an expanded national and local evaluation communities of practice (CoP), which are featured throughout this week’s CEA blog. CEA has organized a stimulating week of posts that address the evaluation-related work of our members including topics on: local affiliate experiences, after school programming and youth voices in evaluation, a new network for Latina Researchers, evaluating community engagements, and sexual and gender minority communities (SGM). This is our third week of featured posts.  Check out our previous work here.

Rad Resource #1:  CEA Affiliate Website.  Are you in the Chicagoland and surrounding area, looking to collaborate with someone based in Chicago, or interested in our affiliate work and professional development opportunities?  Check out the CEA website or email Asma (CEA President) at asma.ali1@gmail.com for more information.

Rad Resource #2:  AEA Local Affiliates.   Are you involved in your local AEA affiliate?  A list of affiliates, contact information, websites, conference archives, helpful links and a variety of evaluation websites can be found here: https://www.eval.org/affiliate.

Rad Resource # 3:  Local Affiliate Collaborative.

As CEA Leadership, we join folks on the Local Affiliate Collaborative (LAC) Steering Committee monthly calls to share support, resources and expertise.  The members and their respective AEA affiliates represent decades of evaluation and AEA leadership experience.  Check out the website and resources. If you’d like to join the LAC, email Leah (LAC co-chair) at leah.neubauer@northwestern.edu.

The American Evaluation Association is celebrating Chicagoland Evaluation Association (CEA) Affiliate Week. The contributions all this week to aea365 come from CEA members. Do you have questions, concerns, kudos, or content to extend this aea365 contribution? Please add them in the comments section for this post on the aea365 webpage so that we may enrich our community of practice. Would you like to submit an aea365 Tip? Please send a note of interest to aea365@eval.org. aea365 is sponsored by the American Evaluation Association and provides a Tip-a-Day by and for evaluators.

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Stephen J. Gill

Stephen J. Gill

Organizations (business, non-profits, and government) are paying more attention to the impact of employee training and learning programs. They recognize that in this Knowledge Economy, learning and change must be a core competency. I’m Stephen J. Gill and I have been evaluating the impact of learning interventions in organizations for the past 35 years. Recently, LAD Global, an affiliate of the Singapore Training and Development Association, asked me to record a free, online, short course for them titled, Measuring and Evaluating Learning in the Knowledge Economy.  In that course, I summarize lessons I’ve learned from the evaluation of many different learning interventions in organizations. I cover the following topics in the course:

  1. Introduction to Measurement and Evaluation of Learning
  2. Purpose of Measurement and Evaluation
  3. Methods of Measurement and Evaluation
  4. Process of Training, Learning and Achieving Results
  5. Designing Measurement and Evaluation
  6. Using Evaluation Results to Make a Difference

These topics are addressed over 72 minutes broken up into 6 modules. The course is designed to be an introductory look at the issues and practices that confront evaluators who want to enhance the impact of employee learning and development programs in their organizations.

The course covers the purpose of measuring and evaluating learning in the Knowledge Economy, some practical information about why evaluation is important in organizations, the different methods of measurement, how proficient practitioners need to be with technology and analytics, the best ways of presenting information to stakeholders, why learners and their managers need to be held accountable for results, how to approach designing measurement and evaluation for your organization, and using the evaluation results to make a difference in your organization.

Lessons Learned:

  1. Engage stakeholders (learners, their managers, executives, team leaders, etc.) in designing evaluation of learning interventions.
  2. Emphasis should be on improving the learning intervention, not proving that it works or not.
  3. Do not use evaluation findings to find fault with people.
  4. Match the evaluation method with the questions you are trying to answer. Kirkpatrick’s Four Levels, Phillip’s ROI, and Brinkerhoff’s Success Case Method are three commonly used options.
  5. Engage stakeholders in reflecting on the meaning of evaluation findings and the implications for their work.
  6. Achieving positive results from a learning intervention has as much if not more to do with the culture of the organization and the support from managers. Evaluate those elements.

Measuring and Evaluating Learning in The Knowledge Economy

 

Do you have questions, concerns, kudos, or content to extend this aea365 contribution? Please add them in the comments section for this post on the aea365 webpage so that we may enrich our community of practice. Would you like to submit an aea365 Tip? Please send a note of interest to aea365@eval.org. aea365 is sponsored by the American Evaluation Association and provides a Tip-a-Day by and for evaluators.

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Welcome to the Chicagoland Evaluation Association’s  (CEA) week of AEA 365.   My name is Leah Christina Neubauer and I am the President of CEA. CEA has organized a stimulating week of posts that address the evaluation-related work of our members.

As the lead post for the week, I offer insights and resources related to the exhilarating world of adult education. Adult and continuing education doctoral training has helped to shape my interests in examining the ways in which adults continue to learn across the personal and professional lifespan.

Evaluators, Adult Education & AEA 2012: As evaluators, how do we create opportunities to learn, grow and enrich our practice?  What happens in our post-training and degree lives that facilitates new learning and growth?  .

Lessons Learned: The Annual AEA conference is an excellent example of a professional development and learning opportunity.

  • What did you learn at AEA 2012?: With all of the presenting, session-attending, and networking – what do evaluators do with the new knowledge gained?  Similar to planning for ‘use’ in our evaluations, how might evaluators plan for ‘use’ of the conference experiences?
  • Planning for Use Takes Actual Time & Vigilance: Planning actual time for learning-oriented reflection, debriefing and action can be quite challenging at conferences. For example, my conference time was spent:
    • 1) planning for sessions I would attend/present in,
    • 2) attending sessions/taking notes,
    • 3) chatting with colleagues about their experiences and insights,
    • 4) consistently waiting in line at the 2nd floor women’s restroom and,
    • 5) at times – acknowledging my brain was becoming too full of information, also known as “conference overload.”
  • Reflecting on Learning – Two Questions: In thinking about the intensity of conference experiences, I offer simple prompts and table design that can aid in harnessing all of the moment-by-moment/session-by-session insights and learning:

I completed two sheets of this table. I ended up scribbling the table on additional blank paper to cover four conference days. I am now working through my AEA 2012 action plans and wow, I captured heaps of information!

  • Post AEA 2012 Learning:  Affiliate Events Can Keep the Local Conversations Flowing.  In working with fellow members of the Local Affiliate Collaborative this past conference,  I heard that several local affiliates plan to host post-AEA 2012 forums. These types of offerings provide an opportunity to present for folks who could not attend and to keep the evaluative learning flowing among members.  Our Chicagoland group is currently planning our event for early December.

Rad Resources: 

The American Evaluation Association is celebrating the Chicagoland (CEA) Evaluation Association Affiliate Week with our colleagues in the CEA AEA Affiliate. The contributions all this week to aea365 come from our CEA members. Do you have questions, concerns, kudos, or content to extend this aea365 contribution? Please add them in the comments section for this post on the aea365 webpage so that we may enrich our community of practice. Would you like to submit an aea365 Tip? Please send a note of interest to aea365@eval.org. aea365 is sponsored by the American Evaluation Association and provides a Tip-a-Day by and for evaluators.

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