Demand for program evaluation skills continues to rise with the demands for evidence of effectiveness. The Warner School’s Program Evaluation programs offer an opportunity to learn how to plan and conduct program evaluations that can be used to inform practice and policy.
The Warner School's programs in Program Evaluation prepare individuals to become program evaluator practitioners in education, industry, health care, and community settings.
Master's in Program Evaluation
This 33-credit hour graduate degree program is structured to impart a set of core skills and competencies that are necessary for successful careers in the field of program evaluation. The interdisciplinary nature of the program provides students with a foundation in program evaluation theory, practice and the opportunity to gain important analytic skills through coursework in quantitative and qualitative research methods necessary for practicing program evaluation.
A distinguishing feature of the program is the culminating master’s capstone project based on an independent program evaluation experience. This culminating experience enables students to apply what they have learned in the classroom to real life settings. Past evaluation students have completed independent evaluations in Rochester-area school districts, higher education institutions and not-for- profit organizations.
The master’s program is designed with flexibility to allow students to draw widely from the resources of the Warner School in developing their own area of interest and expertise. Each student is assigned an advisor to help develop a coherent program of study that attends to the student’s specific interests and aspirations.
Students enter the program with varied backgrounds and interests and pursue different opportunities following graduation. The program prepares graduates to assume positions in a variety of organizations with program evaluation needs. It also provides a solid foundation for those interested in pursuing doctoral study in program evaluation and related fields.
The program can be completed in three semesters of full-time study. Students who opt to attend part-time take an additional one to two semesters to complete the program, depending on their course load each semester. The Warner School has four admissions cycles in October, January, March, and June. Applicants for this program are considered in each cycle, although it is recommended that students start the program in the summer or fall.
Certificate in Program Evaluation
This certificate is appropriate for individuals in all professions who are interested in program evaluation. A minimum of 15 credits is needed to complete the graduate certificate. The program consists of a 3-credit introductory research methods course; three 3-credit courses in evaluation methods and theories, one of which is an independent practicum; and three 1-credit courses on data collection and analysis. The practicum is an opportunity for students to design, implement, and report the results of an independent program evaluation in a real life setting. Past certificate students have completed independent evaluations in their workplace or in Rochester-area school districts, higher education institutions and not-for-profit organizations.
It is highly recommended that students complete a course sequence that addresses fundamental understanding of quantitative and qualitative data collection, analysis and reporting. Increasingly, those doing program evaluation or assessment in educational settings are required to not simply have methodological knowledge and skills, but to be truly highly competent (moving toward an expert) in multiple methods of data collection. For this reason, as a part of the program evaluation certification, we highly recommend both introductory and advanced qualitative and quantitative methods courses.