Session 2 (January 25 – February 7)
A program theory of change is a map that shows how key elements of a program design are expected to produce key outcomes. In participatory approaches to evaluation, we develop that map in consultation with stakeholders. In this session, we’ll discuss key components of a theory of change for university based programs housed in a center to promote civic and community engagement.
- Behind all policies and programs is some theory of change.
- Theories of change typically have both implicit and explicit elements.
- Evaluators need to make explicit theories of change, prior to beginning an evaluation, in the form of an argument.
- Connell, J.P. & Kubisch, A.C. (1998): Applying a Theory of Change Approach to the Evaluation of Comprehensive Community Initiatives: Progress, Prospects, and Problems.
- CU Engage Community Partner Interview Protocol [PDF]
[Post on Forum] Pick one program in CU Engage: What do you see as the key components of the theory of action? What ideas do you have for this program to help the team with an evaluation issue they raised? Identify the issue and how you would approach it.