CEA Quarterly Newsletter August 2018

08/17/2018 9:23 PM | Anonymous

Dear CEA Members,

Welcome to our inaugural CEA Newsletter! We are excited to launch this quarterly newsletter to keep you informed about CEA events and interests. The CEA Executive Committee and Board have been busy! Our focus has been to rebuild CEA infrastructure and leadership by:  

  • Expanding our membership: Our CEA membership is the largest it has ever been and we welcomed our first ever institutional members, the AIDS Foundation of Chicago and the Education Development Center. In the coming year, we will be polling members to learn about your needs and vision for CEA programming and events. Members looking to get more involved can volunteer for our committees! Send an email to connect@evalchicago.org if you are interested in learning more.

  • Creating a fresh look: The Communications Committee has been hard at work! CEA has a brand new logo and branding. Check it out on our new website www.evalchicago.org.

  • Increasing programming: Led by our Professional Development Committee, CEA has hosted six events so far in 2018. These included presentations and workshops from evaluation leaders like David Fetterman, and Tom Lipsey as well as local evaluators like the St. Louis AEA affiliate’s Matt Feldmann and UIC’s Terry Ann Solomon. Our year continues with even more opportunities for professional development this month and next.

  • Utilizing Partnerships: CEA is leveraging our partnerships with The Evaluation Institute, Lurie Children’s Hospital, and Northwestern University to bring together our membership with a broader group of organizations and evaluators. We are also active members of AEA’s Local Affiliate Council which offers opportunities for us to network with other AEA affiliates.

Please feel free to contact us at connect@evalchicago.org if you have any comments for CEA Leadership! I hope to see you soon at a CEA event!

Asma Ali

Upcoming Events:

Jazzin' at the Shedd with AEA President Leslie Goodyear

Wednesday, 08/22/2018
6:00 PM - 8:30 PM
Shedd Aquarium, 1200 S Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, IL 60605

The Chicagoland Evaluation Association is delighted to welcome AEA President Dr. Leslie Goodyear to our Annual Event at the Shedd Aquarium. Leslie will be speaking on the AEA 2018 Conference Theme, Speaking Truth to Power, the new Guiding Principles for Evaluators, and other AEA happenings. 

Event Page: https://www.evalchicago.org/event-2816271

Evaluation & Community Collaboration Conference

Thursday, 08/30/2018
9:00 AM - 3:30 PM
Lurie Children's, 11th Floor Conference Center, 225 E Chicago Ave., Chicago, IL 60611

Representatives from Northwestern, community agencies, and the CDPH to talk about their experiences working together on comprehensive HIV prevention demonstration projects and will include discussion about working together to improve our response to HIV.

Event Page: https://www.evalchicago.org/event-3007373

Becoming Evaluation Ready: Evaluation Training Session for Community Organizations

Wednesday, 09/12/2018
2:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Lurie Children's, 11th Floor Conference Center, 225 E Chicago Ave., Chicago, IL 60611

This session is designed for community organizations and will provide information on how to prepare for partnering with an evaluator and/or evaluating their programs.

Event Page: 

The Chicago Evaluator: Member feature

Because CEA members have such tremendous talent and experience to share with other members, we are featuring one member post in our quarterly newsletters. If you are interested in sharing your work with other members - email us at connect@evalchicago.org.

How To Bring A Logic Model To Life

and wield a MUCH more powerful evaluation tool

Hi, Amelia Kohm of the Data Viz for Nonprofits here to talk about logic models. The evaluation world is lousy with logic models. You may know logic model by one of its other names such as causal chain, model of change, roadmap, and theory of change. A logic model is really just a humble flow chart with an erudite name. It’s a visual representation of how an intervention or program is supposed to work. And it should help evaluators articulate evaluation questions and select appropriate methods and measures to answer them.

Lessons Learned

  • Logic models are hypothetical, best case scenarios. And, well, reality can bite.
  • Logic models often get more play during the planning and proposal-writing phase of a project than during implementation. During the daily work of a project, logic models are taking it easy, gathering dust in files and on servers.

But what if we could plug a logic model into the real world? What if we could see how the plan is playing out in reality and make adjustments along the way?

Cool Trick

With data visualization software like Tableau, you can create a “living logic model. The current that animates it is real-time data. A living logic model compares theory to reality by showing progress to date. It also allows you to track the progress of subgroups and individuals. So it helps you to plan, to ask the right questions, and to make mid-course corrections.

A living logic model is more understandable and tangible than a traditional one. The user can scroll over any component in the model to learn more about it. Such descriptions can include photos and web links for interested users. A living logic model shows progress to date. Color saturation indicates the status of each component. And the user can click on any component to see what subgroups might be driving progress, stagnation, or regression.

Play around with this living logic model that I created for a tutoring program to get an idea of its potential. Scroll over components to get more information. Click on components to get data on individual students. Enjoy and please let me know if you have any questions.

- Amelia Kohm, Founder and Consultant, Data Viz for Nonprofits

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