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0. Logic Modeling 101. Jessica Meyerson Wilder Research May 21, 2009. What is a logic model? . A logic model is a diagram that shows how your program is supposed to work. . Why should my organization have one?. They can help you develop and improve programs

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Logic Modeling 101

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Logic Modeling 101

Jessica Meyerson

Wilder Research

May 21, 2009


What is a logic model?

A logic model is a diagram that shows how your program is supposed to work.

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Why should my organization have one?

  • They can help you develop and improve programs

  • They can give you a framework for evaluating your programs

  • Funders like ‘em!!!

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What should a good logic model do?

It should clearly illustrate your program’s theory of change

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What is a theory of change?

Your theory of change explains how your program is supposed to work.

It is often expressed as a series of “if-then” statements.

  • If we provide quality training on developing logic models, some of you will start to use them

  • If you use start using logic models, then you will:

    • Have an opportunity to strengthen your programming

    • Be eligible for more funding and public support

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Theory of change Continued

Ideally, your program theory should be supported by at least some research.

This research should indicate either that:

  • Your basic approach will work (e.g., stopping drunk driving will reduce alcohol related deaths)

    or

  • There is a clear and unmet need for this type of program (e.g. there are currently no programs specifically for mothers in prison)

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How do I turn my theory of change into a diagram?

  • Logic models can take many different forms

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What should my logic model look like?

Any form (circle, square, trapezoid, etc.), is okay, as long as your model:

  • Is logical

  • Clearly illustrates, in a step-by-step fashion, how your activities will produce your desired results

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Common Components

  • Most effective logic models include the following basic components:

  • Problem statement

  • Program goal(s)

  • Inputs

  • Activities

  • Outputs

  • Outcomes

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Problem statement

  • Your problem statement should succinctly describe the problem you hope to address. For example:

  • African-American men are disproportionately represented in American jails

  • One quarter of all teenager girls are afflicted with a sexually transmitted disease

  • Sixty percent of Minneapolis’ high school students fail to graduate on time

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Program goal(s)

  • Your goal statement should offer a brief description of your program’s overarching aim or purpose. For example:

  • To improve the status of young African-American women by reducing teen pregnancy

  • To increase literacy levels among low-income immigrants

  • To keep at-risk kids out of gangs by providing them with responsible adult mentors

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Inputs

  • These are the resources you plan to invest in the project. For example:

  • Staff

  • Volunteers

  • Funds

  • Classroom or office space

  • Program materials (e.g., curricula or handouts)

  • Partnerships

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Activities

  • These are the basic actions your program takes, or the services it provides, to achieve the desired results.

  • For example:

  • Offering counseling

  • Offering parenting education classes

  • Arranging for out-of-home placements

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Outputs

  • These are the direct, tangible, products of your activities:

  • The number of children you place

  • The number of classes you offer

  • The number family conferences you hold

  • The number of families you re-unify

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Outcomes

  • These are the changes expected to result from your program if everything works well.

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Outcomes continued

  • They can be changes affecting individual clients, whole communities, systems, or organizations. For example:

  • Clients will learn new strategies for resolving family conflict

  • Community members will become more involved supporting at-risk families

  • Fewer children will be placed out-of-home

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Outcomes continued

Often, outcomes are divided into:

Short-term outcomes (fairly rapid changes in participants’ knowledge, attitudes or skills)

Intermediate outcomes (more gradual changes in a participants’ behavior or practices)

Long-term outcomes (widespread changes in social, economic, or environmental conditions)

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Put the pieces together…

Problem statement: Over 90 million US adults are functionally illiterate or near illiterate

Program Goal: To reduce adult illiteracy by offering free reading lessons

Outcomes

Students learn

to read

Inputs

Tutors

Classroom Space

Reading materials

Outputs

# of students

# of tutors

# of sessions

#books read

Activities

Provide free

reading lessons

to adults

Simple logic model for a literacy tutoring program

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Of course, not all models are that simple…

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Complex models continued

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Once developed, the logic model can be used to…

  • Describe the program to funders

  • Illustrate program approach to other stakeholders

  • Train new staff about the program

  • Control ‘program drift’

  • Provide a basis for developing an evaluation

  • Facilitate program management

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How , specifically, do logic models help with developing evaluations?

Logic models are especially useful in outcome evaluations, because they help you:

  • Determine the long-term outcomes you want to achieve

  • Set short-term and intermediate outcomes that can be used to measure progress along the way

  • Some logic models will also include a list of “indicators” (measures) for each outcome

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What are indicators of success???

Problem statement: Over 90 million US adults are functionally illiterate or near illiterate

Program Goal: To reduce adult illiteracy by offering free reading lessons

  • Outcomes

  • Students learn

  • to read

  • Indicators

  • Students improve

  • reading test scores

  • Students obtain

  • GEDs

Inputs

Tutors

Classroom Space

Reading materials

Outputs

# of students

# of tutors

# of sessions

#books read

Activities

Provide free

reading lessons

to adults

Logic model for a literacy tutoring program

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Logic Model Resources

Now that we’ve gone over the basics, it’s time to start building your program’s logic model.

You can find some helpful guides, tip sheets, and tools at:

Wilder Research: www.wilder.org

The Kellog Foundation: http://www.wkkf.org/Pubs/Tools/Evaluation/Pub3669.pdf

The Community Toolbox: http://ctb.ku.edu/tools//section_1877.htm

The University of Wisconsin Extension Service: http://www.uwex.edu/ces/pdande/Evaluation/evallogicmodelexamples.html

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