Welcome back! For those of you new to this blog–I post every Tuesday, rain or shine…at least I have for the past 6 weeks…:) I guess that is MY new year’s resolution–write here every week; on Tuesdays…now to today’s post…
What one thing are you going to learn this year about evaluation?
Something about survey design?
OR logic modeling?
OR program planning?
OR focus groups?
OR…(fill in the blank and let me know…)
A colleague of mine asked me the other day about focus groups.
Specifically, the question was, “What makes a good focus group question?”
I went to Dick Krueger and Mary Anne Casey’s book (Focus Groups, 3rd ed. Sage Publications, 2000). On page 40, they have a section called “Qualities of Good Questions”. These make sense.They say: Good questions…
Let’s explore these a bit.
Before you convene your focus group, make sure you have several individuals (3 – 5) who are similar to and not included in your target audience review the focus group questions. It is always a good idea to pilot any question you use to gather data.
Ellen Taylor-Powell (at University of Wisconsin Extension) has a Quick Tips sheet on focus groups for more information. To access it go to: http://www.uwex.edu/ces/pdande/resources/pdf/Tipsheet5.pdf
Molly: Thanks for this blog and your excellent insights. I like your book suggestions!
I didn’t see a way to send you an email directly. I’m an AEA Blogger (whatever that means) and saw your list of resources on logic models. I was wondering if you are interested in adding something we’ve created. It’s been out for a few years, has been well received, but our SEO efforts have fallen short and we haven’t gotten much exposure. It’s a flash based tutorial on logic models and you’ll find it here:
I’d love to hear your thoughts.
Hey Molly – I was looking for some info on focus groups and came across your blog post. As a former evaluator, who just started a business and is trying to connect evaluation in the business world (vs. my previous academic world), I”m finding it needs to be done quicker (more focus on outcomes than process) – but, businesses do like to learn about their customers, so focus groups produce some of that nice, quote-rich material that can be used. Thanks for the post!