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Program Evaluation Resources

This page contains short videos that orient the viewer to key elements in designing and implementing rigorous program evaluation as well as additional resources related to generating and using evidence in education.


These videos provide an introduction to using Randomized Control Trials (RCTs) in an education setting to inform decision-making.

What is Causality?

Randomized control trials (RCTs) are the best form of rigorous program evaluation for determining whether an intervention caused a particular outcome. This video provides an introduction to the key design elements of RCTs, including when they are appropriate and how to reduce their cost.

What About Ethics?

This video provides an overview of common ethical concerns and political issues that arise when considering an RCT. Understanding these concerns and issues is important in developing the necessary stakeholder support for an RCT.

These videos provide more details on particular aspects of RCT design and implementation.

Deciding if an RCT is appropriate

Not all interventions are at a stage where an RCT is appropriate. This video discusses some of the criteria for determining if an RCT is appropriate for learning about the efficacy of a particular intervention.

Developing a research question

An RCT needs to be grounded in a logical connection between the intervention and desired outcomes as well as a good research question. This video discusses developing these aspects of an RCT.

Effective Stakeholder Communication

A successful RCT requires the buy-in and cooperation of multiple stakeholders, often including administrators, teachers, parents, and students. This video discusses practices that support good stakeholder communication.

Preparing so that Results will Drive Change

In order for the findings that result from an RCT to productively influence decisions, people need to believe in the appropriateness and validity of the research methods. This video discusses these issues.