Research Methods Seminar 5: Thinking about evaluation

Girl in yellow with ruler

21 Jun 2017

3pm to 5pm

Thinking about evaluation: how we might do it better

Professor Sue Clegg, Emeritus Professor Leeds Beckett University/Visiting Professor, Teaching and Learning Exchange, UAL

Evaluation has become the sine qua non of modern societies. There is, however, a paradox because as a result of all this activity many are driven to the conclusion that (in its most hopeful formulation) ‘most things have been found sometimes to work’ (Pawson and Tilley 1997:10).

This of course is of scant use to policy makers or practitioners as it equally implies that most things have been found sometimes not to work. The problem is that focusing on ‘interventions’ tells us little about how and why something worked. In contrast realist evaluation argues for looking at context-mechanism-outcome pattern configurations which identify underlying mechanisms which operate in and across contexts. 

Sue Clegg will discuss the potential of the realist interview in exploring policy makers’ and practitioners’ theories as a way of refining the researchers’ own understanding of the underlying mechanisms at work. The seminar will provide an opportunity for participants to think about the first stages in designing their own evaluations.  

About the series
This year's Teaching and Learning Exchange research seminar series includes a rich mix of contributions that have been designed to explore ways of drawing from diverse disciplinary expertise in order to study aspects of pedagogic or professional practice. 

Who should attend?
The series is designed both for colleagues on the Teaching and Learning Exchange MA Academic Practice in Arts, Design and Communication, and for anyone in the wider UAL community with an interest in approaches to research relating to arts education or academic practice themes.  

Booking Essential
Please book your place using the form below.

See other seminars in this series