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Centre for the Study of Education and Training

Evaluation and Quality

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Members of CSET run workshops for schools, colleges, businesses and TECs on evaluation and quality issues and have undertaken consultancy work in developing evaluation strategies.

Members of CSET are founding members and currently co-ordinators of the North West TEC Quality Network of TEC Quality Managers. Meetings are held regularly, sometimes with outside speakers, to share information and experiences on quality issues. The Network also acts as a forum for developing a regional view on quality matters, and has been the focus of a recent NDA project on a collaborative approach to the quality assurance of cross-boundary training providers.

Publications and Reports:

i) Working Together: An Integrated Approach to Cross-Boundary Supplier Quality Assessment (1995) A report for Employment Department/North West TEC Quality Network. Gill Helsby.

ii) Gill Helsby (1996) Quality Assurance in Youth and Adult Training: Improving Practice or Refining Systems? (1996) in British Journal of Education and Work, Vol 9,

No. 3, pp 5-16.

1. Performance Indicators and Self-Evaluation

This work, funded primarily by a consortium of LEAs and by the Employment Department during the Extension phase of TVEI, involved the development of the Lancaster model of performance indicators (enabling, process, outcome) which was subsequently promoted by TEED and used in a wide variety of contexts. A large scale programme of evaluation training and consultancy was undertaken, initially in schools and FE colleges, to support the development of evaluation expertise. This work has since been extended to other sites, including industry and commerce, TECs and the professional application of advanced learning technologies.

Publications and Reports:

i) Local Evaluation Pilot Support Scheme for TVEI Extension Projects' (1989). A report for the Employment Department. Gill Helsby and Murray Saunders

ii) Performance Indicators: Bureaucratic Control or Developmental Tool? (1990) Gill Helsby and Murray Saunders in Link, Vol.11, No.1.

iii) Taylorism, Tylerism and Performance Indicators: Defending the Indefensible? (1993) Gill Helsby and Murray Saunders in Educational Studies, Vol.19, No.1.

2. The MEDA project (Methodologie d'Evaluation des Didacticiels pour les Adultes). Murray Saunders & Joan Machell

The aim of the project was to create an evaluation tool capable of easy adaptation to the purposes of those working in the rapidly developing area of computer-based training materials.

Evaluation teams from Belgium, France, Italy, Germany and the United Kingdom carried out studies of current practices of evaluating computer-based training materials in businesses, training organisations and educational institutions. A typology of evaluation practices was constructed and, using this as a basis, a prototype evaluation instrument - the MEDA tool - was produced. This prototype instrument was piloted with a range of users and a final revised version was then produced.

The project outcomes include a review of methods of evaluating training software (particularly computer-based) and a generic software evaluation tool: the MEDA Tool. The MEDA tool is currently in the form of a handbook and is available in English, Italian, French and German language versions.

The MEDA project was co-ordinated from Lyon within the French REREF (Reseau Europeen de Recherche en Education et Formation) initiative. It was part of the EUROTECNET programme, funded by the EC, and supported in the UK by TEED, and is on-going.

3. Quality Management and Qualification Needs Analysis : A European Survey Murray Saunders & Joan Machell

The aim of the project is to identify new specialist and interdisciplinary skills required of employees of small and medium-sized enterprises for the implementation and continuous improvement of quality management. The project is focusing on the metalworking and food processing industries and involves teams from Germany, Finland, Greece, Ireland, Portugal, Sweden and the UK.

Funded by CEC Leonardo

Publication

Saunders M and Machell J, 2000, Quality, Qualifications and the attribution of value in work based learning, in Quality Management and Qualification Needs, Koper J and Zaremba H J (Physica Verlag Heidelburg, pp 227-242)

4. Quality Assurance of Training Providers
Gill Helsby

The aim of this project was to develop a core system for the quality assurance of cross-boundary training providers which could be used by North West TECs and which would meet the requirements of TQA:SM. This involved gathering the views of a variety of interested parties, including TEC staff, training providers and staff from Government Office and for the Employment Department.

Publications and Reports:

i) Working Together: An Integrated Approach to Cross-Boundary Supplier

Quality Assessment .... Gill Helsby (1995); Core Criteria (1995); Mapping (1995)

Funded by the consortium of North West TECs

5. The British Council Evaluation and Development Project (Case studies of Hong Kong, Ghana and Poland)

Funded by the British Council £19,000 - 1997

Also for the British Council - various evaluation capacity building activities:
Evaluation of Designing, Shopping, Eating Project Hong Kong 1998
Evaluation Design and Planning, Ghana, Poland and Hong Kong 1999
Evaluation of Creative Industries Export Promotion, Singapore, Japan
2000
Evaluation Capacity Building, Ethiopia 2000
Evaluation Children's Rights, Mexico 2001
Evaluation Governance Interventions, Chile, 2001
Evaluation Design UNWRA, Jordan 2001
Evaluation Capacity Building, English Peace Keeping Project 2001

Murray Saunders

6. Evaluation Planning a Capacity Building Tool

Saunders M, (2000) Beginning an Evaluation with RUFDATA: Theorizing a Practical Approach to Evaluation Planning, in Evaluation Vol 6(1) 7-21

7. Rossendale School Emotional Health Project
Joan Machell, 2001 ongoing

Evaluation of a multi-agency project involving a consortium of partners concerned with addressing the issue of the mental health of school children in the Rossendale Valley.

8. Partners in Parenting
Joan Machell and Tony Gatrell, Institute for Health Research, 2001 ongoing

This evaluation is of a project run by the NSPCC in schools in Cumbria. The aim of the Programme, which is run by trained volunteers, is to develop parenting and relationship skills amongst young people.

9. Co-Brow
Joan Machell and Mike O'Donoghue, 1999

This was an evaluation of an EU-funded project designed to develop tools for collaborative Internet browsing.

10. NW TUC
Joan Machell 1999-2000

An evaluation of ULF and NWDA funded projects (Key Skills, Workforce Development, Learning Representatives Network).