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Confirmative Evaluation: Practical Strategies for Valuing Continuous Improvement



Confirmative Evaluation: Practical Strategies for Valuing Continuous Improvement

Joan C. Dessinger, James L. Moseley

ISBN: 978-1-118-21914-0 December 2003 Pfeiffer 270 Pages


This much-needed book offers trainers, consultants, evaluation professionals, and human resource executives and practitioners a hands-on resource for understanding and applying the proven principles of confirmative evaluation. Confirmative evaluation is a marriage of evaluation and continuous improvement. Unlike other types of evaluation—which are used during the design of a learning program or applied immediately after conducting a program—confirmative evaluation follows several months after the program is implemented. It tests the endurance of outcomes, the return on investment, and establishes the effectivenss, efficiency, impact, and value of the training over time.
List of Figures, Tables, and Performance Support Tools xv

Acknowledgments xvii

Introduction: Getting the Most from This Resource xix

PART 1 The Challenge

Chapter 1: Full-Scope Evaluation: Raising the Bar 3

Evaluation: The Full Scope 5

Comparing the Four Types of Evaluation 11

Evaluation: Full-Scope Model 15

Challenges to Full-Scope Evaluation 17

Chapter 2: Confirmative Evaluation: A Model Guides the Way 21

Confirmative Evaluation Model 22

Challenges to Implementing Confirmative Evaluation 29

Why Bother? 33

PART 2 Meeting the Challenge

Chapter 3: Preplan: Assess Training Program Evaluability 41

When to Plan Confirmative Evaluation 43

How to Plan a Confirmative Evaluation 45

Assess Evaluability 48

Challenges to Evaluability Assessment 68

Chapter 4: Plan: The Plan's the Thing 73

What's in a Confirmative Evaluation Plan? 75

Review, Validate, and Approve the Plan 101

Chapter 5: Do: For Goodness' Sake 107

Jump-Start Data Collection 108

Focus Data Collection 112

Collect the Data 116

Train the Data Collectors 127

Store the Data 127

Manage the Data-Collection Process 128

Chapter 6: Analyze: Everything Old Is New Again 133

Get Ready, Get Set 134

Prepare the Confirmative Evaluation Data 135

Now Analyze 137

Interpret Confirmative Evaluation Results 143

Make Results-Based Recommendations 146

Report Confirmative Evaluation Results 147

Chapter 7: Improve: Now What? 157

Focus on Utilization 158

Assume the Role 162

Accept the Challenge 163

Alignment: The Last Word 168

PART 3 Lessons from Oz

Chapter 8: Case Study: Lions and Tigers and Bears, Oh My! 175

The Case Study 176

Meta Evaluation 186

Final Thoughts 188

Chapter 9: Conclusion: We’re Not in Oz Anymore 191

Issues That Challenge Confirmative Evaluators 192

Evaluation as an Emerging Discipline 197

Improving the Process 198

Put Yourself in the Picture 199

Glossary 203

References 211

Index 221

About the Authors 227

About the Series Editors 229

About the Advisory Board Members 233