• April 23rd, 2016

Social Work and Human Services

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Actions for Discussion #6 – Evaluation
Organizational and specific program evaluation can really stir things up if not approached correctly. Staff, supervisors, licensing agents, administrators and even the clients are not always happy about having to participate and undergo an extensive evaluation process. That is why, as pointed out in the textbook, the best time to plan for program evaluation is during the very creation of the program. Additionally, sometimes evaluations ask wrong or meaningless questions. For example, each of the quizzes in this course is taken directly from the text book. Think about how frustrating it would be if the quizzes were taken from a different text book. The results of that “evaluation” would then be meaningless to me in the context of this course. So it is, sometimes, that personnel and/or program evaluations are not properly dovetailed with the job description or stated goals. Furthermore, there are times when it is more important to “count” what didn’t happen, as opposed to what did. Sometimes, we just need to learn to ask different questions, instead of always allowing other peripheral parties to make up the questions we are then forcibly judged by.

All that being said, discuss the importance of evidence-based practice and of having meaningful program and agency evaluations.
To whom is it important, and why?
Do you think it results in more work being accomplished, or that program evaluations result in a net loss for the clients?
Do you view those in charge of the evaluation (it whatever form it might be) as adversarial or as an advocate in some sense; someone who cares about the cause, so to speak?

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