ERIC Number: ED230583
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1982-Oct
Reference Count: 0
Program Evaluation: Why It Seldom Is Perceived as a Success.
Cohen, Alan M.
The issue of the perceived success of human services program evaluations is the specific focus of this paper. Five areas that affect the potential for producing effective program evaluation form a framework for discussing factors related to perceived success. The areas include inappropriate conceptualization of what an evaluation can accomplish, what to evaluate and how to evaluate. Inappropriate recognition of the limitations of existing program data and inappropriate training of most evaluators also affect the evaluation. There is little consensus about what constitutes a successful evaluation, beyond the recognition that success is related to the utilization of the information generated through the evaluation process. Some consider success to be the extent to which information generated on the impact of the program affects policy decisions regarding the future of that program. Some view an evaluation as "successful" if the program is better articulated. Others expect the information generated by the evaluation to lead to more effective management. In other words, perceived success of program evaluations has a variety of meanings for the same and different audiences. (Author/CM)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Joint Annual Meeting of the Evaluation Network and Evaluation Research Society (Baltimore, MD, October, 1982). Table 5 may be marginally legible due to broken type.