Educational Program Evaluation and Continuous Improvement

To ensure successful educational programming for our trainees, we implement a performance monitoring and evaluation plan. The plan tracks and assesses processes, outputs and outcomes to support continuous program improvement and demonstration of impact and innovation. Our evaluation engages the perspectives of trainees and faculty mentors regarding the: (1) quality and effectiveness of the program and its synergies with other degree-seeking and certificate programming, (2) quality and effectiveness of scientific and career mentoring, (3) performance outcomes of trainees during the program, (4) career outcomes of trainees after the program, (5) scope of opportunities for research networking and cross-disciplinary collaborations in our setting to advance team science, (6) quality of skill development training for faculty mentors and impact on transfer into training practices, and (7) effectiveness of our transition support intended to facilitate K to R independence. The objectives of the evaluation plan are to:

  1. Implement formative and summative evaluation activities using mixed methods that emphasize participatory approaches that actively involve audiences and stakeholder groups in the development of evaluation processes and interpretation of real-time data to guide operational and strategic management.
  2. Use well-defined metrics to measure success for our trainees and programming.
  3. Conduct research productivity and impact analyses to compare local outcomes to trend data in national data sets.
  4. Implement utilization-focused evaluation methods that integrate the ongoing use of evaluation findings into the education governance structure for effective continuous improvement and identifying promising/best practices.
  5. Implement meta-evaluation that provides design and implementation assessment by an external evaluation consultant using the JCSEE national standards as the criteria for examining evaluation quality and determining the extent to which evaluation is relevant and effective.
  6. Actively engage in national CTSA network evaluation activities to advance strong evaluation practices and the Common Metrics Initiative led by the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences.