Re:Module 1 DQ 1
What are the characteristics of good programs? How can an assessment identify these qualities?
Program evaluation is important in making sure that the mission is being achieved in the best possible way. In order to evaluate a program it is important to have identified the characteristics of the program that make it successful. Some of the characteristics that make a program good would be things such as; maintaining the predicted budget, meeting the goals that have been developed based in the mission of the program, and providing the best services possible. As discussed by Cryan and Martinek (2017), staff training and attitude are also vital. The better the staff training and morale of the staff members the more likely it is that the program is achieving their goals. In order to do this assuring that staff members are provided with the best trainings can help to increase morale, along with incentives for achieving these goals. Regarding program evaluation Chyung (2014) stated that, largely influenced by Michael Scrivens (1991a) definition of evaluation, I define program evaluation as the systematic collection and analysis of information about the process and outcomes of a program in order to make improvements or judgments about the quality or value of the program. Collecting data at the request of the key stakeholders can help to assess and identify the qualities of the program to ensure it has these characteristics.
Chyung, S. (. (2015). Foundational Concepts for Conducting Program Evaluations. Performance Improvement Quarterly, 27(4), 77-96. doi:10.1002/piq.21181
Cryan, M., & Martinek, T. (2017). Youth Sport Development Through Soccer: An Evaluation of an After-School Program Using the TPSR Model. Physical Educator, 74(1), 127-149. doi:10.18666/TPE-2017-V74-I1-6901
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Re:Module 1 DQ 1
It is important that a program works effectively to in order to solve the problems it is set out to solve. The program must have a planned actions and procedures in place to function appropriately and to be effective in solving problems. According to Royse, Thyer, and Padgett (2016), staffing, budgets, stable funding, identity, and service philosophy are all important characteristics of a good program. Staffing is important because programs need appropriate staff to fill specific roles, and budget and funding are imperative to continue to run successfully and to keep morale up by providing appropriate pay and resources. Identity is essential when running a program, because the program needs to be recognized by the public, and their service philosophy helps to deliver their message, mission, and goals. Program assessments can be completed to determine any problems in the program, to evaluate the success of a program, or to improve a program. Program evaluations are an important part of ensuring success of a program and they can provide information on if the program is helping the clients, if it is making any significant difference, does the program deserve the amount of funding it is receiving, which procedures work best, if staff is efficient, and determine necessary improvements (Royse, Thyer, & Padgett, 2016).
Royse, D., Thyer, B. A., & Padgett, D. K. (2016). Program evaluation: An introduction (6th ed.). Boston, MA: Cengage Learning.
Re:Module 1 DQ 2
Are objective measures the best ways to assess a program? Why or why not?
I think that objective measures are the best way to assess a program. These objectives give us a set of guidelines that help us to determine if the program is successful or not. When discussing the importance of having a set of objectives to measure Barclay and Osei-Bryson (2009) shared that, hence, without careful direction, there may be gaps in analysis that may impact stakeholders expectations and perceptions that can undervalue the contribution of the program and lose valuable learning signals or opportunities. If we are observing a group of people we will have an easier time doing so with a set of objective measures. As reported by Dolinsky and Kelley (2010), psychology programs are advising their faculty to use evidence-based assessment in the same manner that the American Psychological Association (APA) is stressing the use of evidence-based therapy within the clinical domain. Evidenced based programs generally have a set of objectives that help to measure the success or failure of the program being implemented. In the field of psychology we generally have objectives for everything we do, and this determines if we are achieving our goals. For example, I develop a treatment plan for each of my clients based on their individual needs. Within each goal are several objectives. I am able to determine if a goal is being met when the objectives under that goal have been met. This is an example of a time that objective measures are the best way to assess whether the treatment program is working. If it is not then we adjust the goals and objectives accordingly. This would be the case within other programs as well.
Barclay, C., & Osei-Bryson, K. (2009). Toward a more practical approach to evaluating programs: The Multi-Objective Realization approach. Project Management Journal, 40(4), 74-93.
Dolinsky, B., & Kelley, J. M. (2010). For Better or for Worse: Using an Objective Program Assessment Measure to Enhance an Undergraduate Psychology Program. Teachi