Please share any evaluations you have on health edutainment projects via this website
We need to learn from the commercial sector how to research, plan, implement and implement campaigns so that they are relevent to target groups
Clear aims help evaluation
The World Health Organization recommends that at least 10% of a project's budget is spent on evaluation. Evaluation needs to be planned at the beginning of any project and not the end. You also need to agree your aims and objectives at the start as well. It is important to have baseline data then too so that you can measure any change later on. Ideally projects should also use control groups but this often isn't possible.
Evaluation is usually through a mixture of quantitative and qualitative techniques. The first measures 'hard' data that statistics can be compiled from. The second records'soft' data e.g. from in-depthinterviews. There are many different models of evaluation.
However four keys aspects are described below.
What resources did you put into the project? For example find out
* How many hours did the project take to develop? How was the work spread out? Can this be streamlined?
* How much did it cost? Can it be done cheaper?
What human factors were in play? For example
* What was the official structure? What happened in reality?
* How were decisions made? Were they decided by Government instruction, by senior management, by workers on the ground or by the participants?
* How fair and effective was this process? Can it be improved?
What came out of your project?
In terms of a live performance:
* How many people watched the show?
* What songs (or jokes) seemed to get what response? How could this be built on?
* How many successful contacts did the follow up workers make?
* How many people followed up any referrals?
In terms of other formats such as magazines or web pages:
* How do they score on the various tests that can be carried out on written materials? What can be improved?
* How many materials were given out or how many hits does the site get on various pages?
* How do people use the materials? Invite potential readers to look at them. Ask them to record how long they stay on each page. If they are looking for something specific, how easy is it to find?
* Commercial publishers often use competitions as a way of getting a response from their readers
Has health improved as a result of your project?
* Outcomes are easier to measure if the intervention has a short-term outcome. This could be someone going for screening or to a stop smoking adviser
* In terms of some health outcomes the result may take decades to measure, e.g. a drop in deaths from cancers. (This is sometimes described as impact assessment.) Even then any change may be the result of many things
Analysing your results
If your intervention appears not to have worked, this may be because the concept behind it is wrong. Alternatively it may have been carried out ineffectively. (In some cases of course, it may be impossible with the skills or money available to you, to carry it out effectively.)
You can also use your results to compare your project with other possible approaches. Is the same result possible from another more cheaply?
Who benefits from the evaluation?
* For example, who gets paid for doing it and who is expected to do it for nothing?
* Do professionals come into an area, do the evaluation and then get out?
* Alternatively are local people skilled up to be employed to do this and subsequent evaluations?
* Do the people who take part in it, see the findings?
Sharing your evaluation
Edutainment and other other uses of popular culture seem to be under evaluated. If you know of any evaluations I would be interested in linking them to this site. This way we can begin to share best practice. I would like to see this site develop as a hub for health edutainment knowledge.
(For references click here and links click here.)
To download my whole 180 page report on using popular culture to tackle health inequalities click here
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