Evaluating the Process
Training evaluation should take place throughout each phase of the training process, not as a last step. We've noted this important point at the end of each section's description. For example, after conducting a needs assessment, ask an experienced clinician if the needs identified are accurate based on the clinician's experience. Have other trainers review written materials before finalising and printing them for training. This kind of "formative" or process evaluation helps ensure that you have developed your training with great thought and analysis at each step.
From the Field:
CHART uses four forms from the Training Information Monitoring System (TIMS) to capture information from all CHART trainings. When a participant attends a Caribbean HIV/AIDS Regional Training Network (CHART) training, they fill out a Participant Registration Form, which asks participants for basic demographic information and details about the kinds of HIV-related services they provide. The trainer also fills out a form called the Trainer Registration Form, which asks for basic information about the trainer, such as areas of expertise in the HIV/AIDS field.
The Course Information Form records information about the course as a whole, such as training topic, training level, summary of evaluations, and location and number of participants. The Follow-up Report Form is used after a training to reconnect with participants and explore how they have applied what they learned in a CHART training to their HIV-related job responsibilities. The information captured in TIMS can be used for reporting purposes to donors and other program stakeholders.
Information on the Participant Registration Form was recently used at the first CHART Clinical Conference on HIV/AIDS held in Montego Bay, Jamaica in June, 2004. Included in this registration form were questions about the HIV care and treatment that participants provide to their Caribbean patients. This information will be used to help determine how many healthcare providers that CHART trained at the conference are providing HIV-related services to Caribbean residents. In addition, the form contains a place to record pre- and post-test scores for each participant who completed a knowledge assessment test before and after the conference. This information was used to determine roughly how much HIV/AIDS knowledge each participant gained from the conference.
The most obvious and frequent kind of evaluation occurs immediately after training; participants complete a course evaluation form following the training but before leaving the site. Evaluation can also take place at the end of each day of training through quick "How did it go?" discussions, or even in organised focus groups with participants during the evening. Longer-term, follow-up evaluations conducted three months to a year or more after training are also a possibility. These evaluations measure how participants use their newly acquired information and skills in their professional roles.
This section on training evaluation has five main areas: Developing Evaluations, Forms and Questionnaires, Clinical Evaluation, Process Evaluation and TIMS Evaluation Forms. The TIMS subsection provides you with the tools you need for using the Training Information Management System (TIMS), if it is applicable to your program. Also check out the Online Resources available on training evaluation.
Also included in this section on training evaluation is a From the Field example of how to use a few of the tools to evaluate training. Don't forget to monitor your ongoing progress by clicking on Chart your Progress.