The Evaluation of Broad-Aim Programs

Experimental Design, Its Difficulties, and an Alternative
Part of the Evaluation in Education and Human Services book series (EEHS, volume 6)


There is an approach to the evaluation of social action programs which seems so sensible that it has been accepted without question. The underlying assumption is that action programs are designed to achieve specific ends and that their success can be established by demonstrating cause-effect relationships between the programs and their aims. In consequence, the preferred research design is an experimental one in which aspects of the situation to be changed are measured before and after implementation of the action program. To support the argument that the program is responsible for the observed changes, the anticipated effects may be measured simultaneously in a control situation that does not receive the program (Campbell & Stanley, 1966). This plausible approach misleads when the action programs have broad aims and take unstandardized forms.


Action Program Model City Unanticipated Consequence Comparison Situation Poverty Program 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Kluwer-Nijhoff Publishing 1983

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