Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Week 4 Evaluation Paradigms and Models

When reading the four paradigms I was really confused by the terminologies – they are totally above my head :-(

In my planned evaluation schedule, two issues I raised in Week 3 post are finding out how clear objectives will help students achieve their learning goals, and how effective the online learning encourage students to not only remember the content, but explorer their learning further by analysis, synthesis and apply their learning skills into practical activities.

Regarding experimental evaluation model and multiple methods evaluation model. As Bronwyn (2003) stated, experimental (quasiexperimental) evaluation are generally carried out “quantitatively through the study of experimental and control group”. I believe multiple methods evaluation model is a proper tool to be used in my plan. To apply guidelines of TD2 (Do students get clearly defined learning objectives that assist them in focusing on their learning activities?) and ST4 (Does the course require students to engage in analysis, synthesis and evaluation as part of their course and program requirements?), I have to say it’s hard to use quantitive tests to explain them straight away; also we can’t quantify every single learning outcomes to evaluate guideline TD2 and ST4 in my planned evaluation solution . The issues need to be measured from different perspectives and information should be collected in different methods. That’s the reason why I think multiple methods is proper to be used here.

Bronwyn (2003) mentioned in multiple methods evaluation model, “ two main approaches are used, triangulation and bracketing”. To use a range of methods gathering data in several ways, I may use diverse methods (just a rough thought) and collect data from different groups. Maybe for TD2, I will ask students to fill in questionnaire and checklist, or interview students to find how important role learning objectives play during the study journey. For guideline ST4, I will probably try to collect all relevant information as much as I can from students, facilitators, program manager and assessors by using questionnaire, rate ranking forms, interviews, etc. So the factors can be fully triangulated and bracketed.


  1. Joy this is a very thorough overview of your proposed evaluation. This looks like you are going to carry out what we call an Effectiveness evaluation. Chapter 8 in the textbook (Reeves & Hedberg) will be relevant for you to read more on this method/type of evaluation. Your ideas about a mixed methods model are excellent and will fit well. Try not to get too adventurous as it will get too big. It is okay to put several ideas for data collection methods in your plan, but perhaps only actually use two or three for the project.

  2. Hi Joy, you are using a similar paradigm and methods to me, but you describe it better! It sounds like this will be a very useful evaluation, which will result in practical information that you can use to improve student's learning.