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Evaluation and Assessment Methods

EAM 610: Principles of Evaluation Design
This course will examine the role of evaluations in organizations, policy making, programmatic decision-making and fundraising. It will introduce research designs commonly employed to monitor ongoing programs and measure outcomes. The course will also address strategies for engaging stakeholders in evaluations. By the end of the course, students will be able to identify the appropriate research design for a specific evaluation need, taking into consideration financial and logistical constraints. Students will also design logic models to guide evaluation planning.

EAM 620: Data Collection
This course prepares students to use both quantitative and qualitative research methods, and address how, when, and why different methods are deployed.  In this course, students learn about data collection methods, sampling strategies for quantitative research, effective survey design, conducting focus groups and in-depth interviews, the role of sample size, categories of quantitative variables, and assessing the reliability and validity of their measurement tools.

EAM 630: Data Analysis
This course provides an overview of the theoretical foundations of qualitative and quantitative data analysis, and teaches practical skills related to data management, analysis, and theory development. Students will learn to code and interpret qualitative data and to interpret statistics most commonly used in evaluation sciences.

EAM 640: Project Management
Successful interventions and evaluations depend on strong planning and project management skills. This course covers skills and strategies related to budgets, planning, stakeholder engagement, staff supervision, and fundraising.  Additionally, students will learn about different leadership styles and will work to develop leadership skills.

EAM 695: Special Topics
Special Topics allows faculty to develop unique courses that reflect their individual research and interests and that represent important current directions in the field of evaluation and assessment. The course topic, requirements, and learning outcomes will be determined by the instructor. May be repeated as topics change.

WDC 600 Digital Portfolio Design
Working with a faculty adviser and in workshops with other students in the course, each student will create a digital portfolio to house graduate work and special projects. The course will cover navigation of backend directory structures of web platforms, as well as analysis of frontend user interfaces. Following the course, the portfolio continues to be an important part of the student’s graduate experience. It will be revised and updated over the course of the program. A completed, professional quality portfolio is a requirement for the master’s degree, to be submitted for evaluation in the final semester following guidelines established by the program.

WDC 614 Grant and Proposal Writing
This course covers the complete process of grant and proposal writing and the contexts and strategies of the philanthropic environment. Students will learn how to research funding opportunities, identify and plan successful projects, devise achievable goals and budgets, write proposals for public and private foundations, follow up on both successes and rejections, and incorporate digital technologies. This course satisfies an elective for the evaluation and assessment methods graduate certificate.