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evaluation and impact evaluation


We are developing an electronic evaluation and  impact evaluation model.  I know that this is not considered ideal but there isn't

capacity within our service to implement this any other way.  Learners will return the electonic form a couple of

days after the activity has happened.  Does anyone know if any research has been done about a statistically acceptable rate of

return for evalutions?  It is highly unlikley that we will get 100% like we did when paper based forms were completed on the day

of the activity.


Clare Sowerby

4 Responses

  1. Return rates


    Return rates vary according to a number of factors. I’m not aware of any meaningful research to indicate any averages but even if it does exist it your particular situation that counts not some averaged figure.

    Generally speaking you get better return rates where

    • the emotional response is highest (loved it or hated it),
    • there is little time delay between the learning and the evaluation,
    • there is some loyalty or good relationship with that area of the business,
    • the response mechanism is short and easy to complete,
    • there is a disciplined environment or a culture of compliance,
    • there is some incentive,
    • people people their voice will be heard and real improvements made, 
    • the email prompt is sent by a respected senior person, 
    • a reminder is sent

    Hope that helps


  2. evaluation

    Thanks very much Graham, that is very helpful.  I will suggest that we use the tips you’ve given to increase our response rate.



  3. Another thought ….

    Hi Clare, part of my my previous training role was spent looking at using paperless methods of course evaluation where we had access to the Bristol Online system.  In our case the courses were for IT training where each delegate used an individual PC for their coursework.  My boss and I disagreed (in a friendly way) over future return rates as he felt people would complete online forms after returning to their desks whereas I was pushing for a link to be included with the delegate login (we used temporary accounts) so that individuals could complete their form on their screens just as the course was being wound up.  My feeling is that delegates genuinely meant to complete their forms after their course but got rather distracted.  Therefore I would do as much as possible to ensure evaluations are completed before delegates leave the classroom!  ūüôā

  4. My experience

    I’ve been using electronic feedback for just over a year now and am averaging a 65% response rate.

    I have seen the quality of the free text answers improve though with more constructive detail. 

    Equally by completing them later they do more often include additional questions, which is great as previously some of these, I suspect, were never asked.  However, it does mean that there is more to follow up on so depending on the amount of analysis you do now compared to what you want to achieve there may not be as much time saving as expect.

    Overall I prefer electronic as I do more with it and I am more confident that although I may not be getting an opinion from everyone, the opinions I am getting are more useful.

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