This Evaluation Support Tool Kit, developed by a consultant team from Holt, Wexler & Farnam, LLP, will help organizations providing summer programs to track the services and outcomes for participants, inform ongoing efforts to provide quality programs, and to document the importance of your work.
We invite you to review the tool kit and to use it as you develop your evaluation plans and to improve your programs in natural course. We welcome your feedback.
Toolkit Documents (PDF format)
- Overview of Program Evaluation: Includes a summary developed in May 2008 to support summer programs and a more detailed article.
- Developing Surveys: Includes tips for writing questions.
- Survey Tips and Resources: Includes more information on specific topics like online surveys.
- Other Data Collection Methods
- Recording and Analyzing Data
- Reporting Your Evaluation Data
Sample Surveys, Spreadsheets and Reports
The following samples are only intended as examples. Most programs will need to develop surveys that address your specific desired outcomes, and that address the key purposes of your evaluation. These samples are illustrative of how you might approach your work. These samples reflect the unique needs of the particular programs. The Hartford Foundation for Public Giving does not endorse the use of these sample surveys across all programs.
- Reports 1 (large document - please be patient)
- Reports 2 (large document - please be patient)
Program Evaluation Articles / Funder Perspectives
The Community Tool Box
This website includes a wide range of resources for organizations and communities, including recommendations for evaluating an initiative.
Free Management Library
The Library "provides easy-to-access, clutter-free, comprehensive resources regarding the leadership and management of yourself, other individuals, groups and organizations." Includes a "Basic Guide to Program Evaluation" by Authenticity Consulting. Describes the different types of evaluation and good tips for conducting the evaluation.
Horizon Research, Inc.
"Taking Stock: A Practical Guide to Evaluating Your Own Programs" is a good step-by-step primer for conducting a program evaluation, and includes sample reports and a glossary of evaluation terms (93 pages including appendices). This also includes a glossary of evaluation terms on pages 89-91.
United Way of America
Summary of the United Way’s approach to measuring outcomes.
Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS)
List of resources on outcome-based evaluation, and an online course on "Shaping Outcomes." Focuses on evaluation for libraries and museums, but are good resources for other programs.
W.K. Kellogg Foundation
Produced an "Evaluation Handbook" describing its (high) expectations for grantees’ evaluations (110 pages).
Excellent summary of tips for developing surveys, including examples of how to improve questions.
American Camping Association
Has a range of surveys for evaluating camping programs.
Sample surveys used in California that examine different youth behaviors and competencies, including a survey of after-school programs.
Has done much work on defining 40 youth developmental assets, and have developed surveys to measure attainment of these assets. Survey questions are included in the sample report, and an order form for the survey (which programs would need to purchase).
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
The Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS) is conducted nationally every two years. Programs could compare local results with national data and data for different population groups.
Making the Case for Summer Youth Programs
Nellie Mae Education Foundation
"The Learning Season: The Untapped Power of Summer to Advance Student Achievement" is an excellent summary of the research on summer youth programs.
Philliber Research Associates and the American Camp Association
"Directions: Youth Development Outcomes of the Camp Experience" reports on a national research project to measure outcomes of the camp experience. Includes information on survey items used to measure positive identity, social skills, physical and thinking skills, and positive values and spirituality.
MENTOR / National Mentoring Partnership
Includes resources and research on the impacts of mentoring programs.
Background Articles on Rubrics
Examples of Science Rubrics
More Resources for Rubrics