Just knowing how to get started is a common, seemingly daunting challenge for those new to evaluating Extension program activities. Fortunately, for AgriLife Extension, the first step is reduced to deciding whether or not to use scan forms for data collection. The dichotomy is summarized here:
Evaluation Using Scan Forms: this is a popular, convenient way to collect data in which many of the operational steps involved in the evaluation are performed by Organizational Development at no charge. It involves just a few steps – selecting a scan form, making copies, and submitting completed forms to Organization Development. Results are sent to you a few weeks later. Counties required to submit customer satisfaction data should use a scan form to meet that requirement. Click here to learn more or pursue this option.
Evaluation Not Using Scan Forms: this involves designing and implementing an evaluation yourself without use of scan forms. This is appropriate if you didn’t find a scan form that met your needs or if you have very specific data collection requirements in terms of strategy, target audience, questions, format, length, etc. that need to be customized and under your total control. Data collection typically involves the use of Qualtrics for web surveys, audience response systems (clickers), non-scan form paper surveys, or non-survey methods such as observation, records review, etc. Click here to learn more or pursue this option.
Below is a graphic representation of the dichotomy of using scan forms vs. not using scan form, available options, and what is expected from you under each course of action. Click on the image to see a larger, more readable version.
The chart below provides an overview of evaluating Extension programs (client changes, data collection, etc.) – divided by the timing of evaluation. It shows that scan forms are used at the conclusion of a program. Client changes and other metrics can be measured by scan forms are highlighted in brown.