The Weller Center values program evaluation and continuous quality improvement. Using pre-, post- and six-week follow-up tests, we evaluate all of our programs by measuring participants’ changes in knowledge, attitudes, and intent to change behavior based on topic-specific goals and objectives. Evaluation data from 2013-14 show that students demonstrate an 18 percentage point average increase between pre- and post-test scores in all programs offered by the Weller Center.
During several programs, we also utilize an audience response system to anonymously ask questions about health risk behaviors and compare that information to national data. This data is critical to ensuring that our programs are current and applicable to our target audiences. School district administrators can also use the data to create or implement school policies, inform professional development of staff, create district-wide programming or initiatives, seek additional grant funding, and garner support for future surveys.
Teachers also evaluate the competency and professionalism of our health education staff as well as the relevancy of our programming. Summary data from 202 teacher surveys collected during the 2013-14 school year shows that over 95 percent of the time teachers strongly agreed that programming aligned with the school curriculum, the learning objectives were clear, and that the presentation was delivered by a well-prepared and knowledgeable instructor. The percentage of teachers that either “Strongly Agree” or “Agree” to the following statements are:
The program aligns with your school district’s curriculum and other initiatives. (92.1%)
The program’s learning objectives were clear and effectively conveyed to students. (97.6%)
The instructor was professional and communicated effectively with the students. (97%)
We also ask teachers to identify their top three areas of concern for their students. The Weller Center uses this information to create and recommend health programming that addresses the specific needs of the school districts we serve. The following chart summarizes the issues of concern, expressed by teachers of participating schools, regarding what they perceive to be the biggest problems affecting their student population. The top five issues include: Bullying, Self-Esteem, Nutrition, Healthy Relationships, and Drug Use.
For more information about the Weller Center’s program evaluation initiatives, please contact our Director of Research and Evaluation, Julie Zumas, MPH, CPH, CHES at email@example.com .
The Weller Center contracts with university-based Ph.D. assessment experts to assist with program research and evaluation. Contract budgets are subject to an administrative cap of 10 percent.