Data Modeling 101: The What? Why? and When?
What is a Data Model? In semi-technical terms, A data model is a set of symbols and text used for communicating a precise representation of an information landscape. (Hoberman, 2016, p.13). In laymans terms (i.e., my interpretation) a data model is similar to a blueprint used when building a house. It contains lines and shapes denoting the location of where the different rooms will be located, and where the different pipes and wirings will go, so that the builders can use it as reference during the construction of the house.
Design & Evaluation: Craft Clarity
by Taj This is the third and final post in a series about design thinking in evaluation. I’ve found that designers and evaluators grapple with similar issues, so the goal of this series is to share insights from the world of design that may help you think differently about data collection and visualization and, hopefully, start a broader conversation about what the world of social sciences can learn from the world of design.
Tailoring Qualitative Methods to Evaluation Clients’ Needs
by Jill (Re-post from AEA365; see the original here.) At CRC Im the word nerd, implementing our qualitative projects. Like many evaluators, Ive had to translate academically-honed skills to the often faster-paced world of evaluation. A recent project for a county health departments substance abuse initiative provides an example of how I tailor qualitative methods to meet clients needs. Hot Tips Allot ample time for clarifying goals. As with all good research, methods choices flow from the question at hand.
How to Prove Your Youth Program is Rockin'
by Mandi Singleton Are you passionate about making a difference in the lives of youth? Many of my clients are, and the time, effort, and money they put into creating killer programs is proof enough that they are invested in forming positive and meaningful experiences for the young people that they work with. BUT, how do program directors really know they are creating quality experiences for youth? How exactly is this measured?
Why I Love Interactive Dashboards
by Sheila Data visualization involves the presentation of data in a graphical format with the goal of communicating complex information more clearly and efficiently to audiences. Effective visualizations make complex data more accessible, understandable, and usable. And sometimes even fun to look at! I like visualizing data because like many others, Im a visual learner. If you consider that 90% of information that comes to the brain is visual, and that the brain processes visual information 60,000 faster than text, then you start to understand why visualizing complex data is beneficial in both research and evaluation.
The Opioid Epidemic - When Prescriptions Become the Problem
by Sheila Matano Recently, CRC has been working with several clients who are evaluating initiatives to combat substance misuse and abuse. In particular, these agencies have been concerned with how their local communities have been impacted by the problem of drug overdoses and opioid-involved deaths, which have markedly increased in the United States over the past decade (CDC.gov). More than six out of ten drug overdose deaths involve an opioid, and The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 91 Americans die every day from an opioid overdose (Rudd, Seth, & Scholl, 2016).
Design& Evaluation: Focus on Human Values
This is the second post in a series about design thinking in evaluation. The goal of this series is to share insights from the world of design that may help you think differently about how you work and, hopefully, start a conversation about what the world of social sciences can learn from the world of design. If you missed Part 1 about radical collaboration, check it out here. This time around were focusing on another key idea in the design thinking world: human values.
Tips & Tricks for Child Focus Groups, Part 2
by Mandi Singleton (Note: this post is the second part of a two-part series.) As I mentioned in the my last blog post, one of my favorite things about my job at CRC is conducting focus groups. Focus groups with elementary school students can be the most challenging and the most fun for me as a focus group facilitator. Here in part two of my discussion of tips & tricks for doing focus groups with kids, I get into strategies that make for effective and enjoyable groups.
Tips & Tricks for Child Focus Groups, Part 1
by Mandi Singleton One of my favorite things about my job is conducting focus groups. I enjoy the opportunity it gives me to interact with people, capturing and learning from their thoughts and feelings about experiences theyve had. While at CRC Ive had the opportunity to facilitate a series of focus groups with elementary school students. Although many of my projects are education-related, I had never done a group with children so young before.