Best Practice: How to evaluate the results of a learning event
CPD training courses and learning events are evaluated to ensure learning is effective and to improve the quality of the course. There are four kinds of evaluation:
- Pre- and post-tests:
Pre/Post-tests are conducted before and after a training course to measure the competencies acquired during the training course. Such a test should comprise a simple multiple-choice test which should not take up too much time. Often it is only the post-test which is applied which demonstrates the learning achieved.
- Immediate reaction evaluation:
The immediate reaction evaluation captures participants reactions on the closure of a training course. Participants evaluate the performance of the trainer(s) or facilitator(s), the quality of handouts and materials, what they have learnt during each lesson, logistics and arrangements, and other matters. This type of evaluation is subjective, though valuable. In some cases, the trainer or facilitator will also evaluate the course. For TSC teacher training participants are asked to complete an EVALUATION FORM.
- Outcome evaluation
The outcome evaluation measures concrete improvements in work behaviour and demonstrated knowledge and competencies as against course objectives. This is a measure of the success of the course and measures how much is learnt and subsequently applied in the workplace. Outcome evaluation typically takes place 3 and/or 6 months after course completion through questionnaires sent to participants and their supervisors.
- Impact evaluation
The impact evaluation usually examines impact of larger training programmes in relation to government policies, strategies and plans, or the impact on education in, for example, quality of teaching, reduction in drop-out rates, increase in pass rates, improvement in gender balance, and effect on the labour market and the economy. Impact can usually only be measured after a couple of years and CPD may only be one of several factors that influence impact. Impact can be determined from statistics, surveys, government reports, etc.