Date of Award
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Data on the extent and type of program evaluation utilization in a sample of recent Canadian program evaluations were analyzed and then assessed with the characteristics of the evaluation processes employed, the evaluators who conducted the evaluations and the decision contexts in which the evaluations were performed. Surveys were mailed to all members of the Canadian Evaluation Society (CES) and the Program Evaluation Section of the Canadian Psychological Association (PES-CPA) during the fall of 1988. These individuals were followed up using procedures prescribed by Dillman (1978) resulting in a response rate of 68%. Additional data were obtained by mailing surveys to the department heads of 135 Canadian university departments. This mailing was not followed up and produced a response rate of 21%. A total of 332 completed surveys was returned from all sources. Program evaluation utilization was reported to be very extensive with 98% percent of this sample reporting utilization of some type. The most frequently occurring type of utilization was conceptual utilization (65%), followed by instrumental utilization (55%) and persuasive utilization (40%). A single type of utilization was reported in 47% of cases, two types in 42% of cases and all three in 10% of cases. The occurrence of each of the three types of utilization was related to different patterns of the evaluation process, evaluator and decision context variables with no one group of variables dominating the analyses. Finally, findings from research on correlates of American evaluation utilization were not replicated in the present study. There was partial support for the Patton et al. (1978) finding that the identification of a key decision maker to take responsibility for utilization was a key factor in determining utilization. Implications for evaluation practice and suggestions for future research were discussed within the context of the current study's results.Dept. of Psychology. Paper copy at Leddy Library: Theses & Major Papers - Basement, West Bldg. / Call Number: Thesis1991 .S573. Source: Dissertation Abstracts International, Volume: 53-01, Section: B, page: 0597. Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Windsor (Canada), 1991.
Shea, Michael Patrick., "Program evaluation utilization in Canada and its relationship to evaluation process, evaluator and decision context variables." (1991). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 3207.