Participants in this workshop will build the foundation for evaluating programs supported by libraries, youth development sites, and other organizations that promote connected learning by creating experiences for youth that are participatory, socially connected, interest-driven, and oriented towards educational opportunity. Beginning with detailed descriptions of each program’s features and the notable and interesting ways youth engage with these features, participants will help one another articulate a _theory of change_ for each program, including the types of outcomes, benefits, and influences the program’s activities are intended to produce. Aided by research on connected learning and sharing commonalities across their programs, participants will identify targets for measurement, outline a candidate evaluation plan, and map data collection approaches and identify instrument needs and possibilities for their plans. Participants will leave the workshop with increased capacity for reflective program improvement, answering their own questions about how to best serve their constituencies, and also with new tools for documenting and presenting the value of their work to funders and other stakeholders. Practitioners, designers, and evaluators are all welcome.
We request that prospective workshop participants provide an initial, one-page description of their connected learning youth program. Their descriptions should list key program features (e.g., activities, resources, mentors) to be evaluated, characteristics of participants served by the program, and things that participants know, can do, or are prepared for through the program. A short bio describing the role of workshop participant in relation to the program (e.g., activity leader, executive director, evaluator) also is requested. The bio should include a description of any experience in conducting program evaluation; however, no experience is required.
Download workshop flyer here.