(Written By: Allah Dad Khan and Junaid Hafeez)
Evaluation is an important and integral part of extension programming ,Evaluation is the systematic acquisition and assessment of information to provide useful feedback about some object.
Basic Concepts of Evaluation in Agriculture Extension:
- That evaluation should promote learning and understanding of process and impacts
- That it must complement any other evaluation activities taking place within the department, such as routine cost–benefit analysis
- That data collection and analysis should only occur when the findings can be and are used
- Evaluation establishes criteria for judging the progress .
- Evaluation help in determining the cost benefit activities . It enables the evaluator to measure progress in term of money spent on it.
- It provides data how the public money is being spent.
- Evaluation makes available in written form , results of the programme for general public use . Effective evaluation of the programme will always emphasize on sharing results with the interesting individuals.
- Evaluation avoids waste of time and money in the programme and promotes general efficiency.
- Participatory learning and action
- Participatory rural appraisal
- Evaluation provides a bench mark for future programming; it also helps upgrade the individuals involved in the programmes. It furnishes information on who contributes the most in the programmes.
Evaluation of Different Agricultural Extension Methods:
There are a number of methods used in extension. Some of the methods used are mentioned here to give the reader Idea of the nature of evaluation required for each method.
a. Result demonstration: It is very important to keep records on the results of each demonstration, as the evaluation focuses on the end results. But it is even more important to check back on just how the demonstration was planned and conducted so that corrections and improvements can be made in the future demonstrations.
b. Method demonstration: A demonstrator should have a self-evaluation of his performance by using the same check list. In this evaluation is focused on the methodology of demonstration.
c. Tours and field days: Those responsible for tours and field days also evaluate these events. They commonly measure success by such criteria as attendance, how smoothly things went, and the degree of interest manifested. Comments favorable and attitudes or actions observed are clues upon which they can base their conclusions.
In addition to evaluations made during or after an event, the extension educator often is able to continue to appraise its effect. Because he remains in contact with the clientele involved, he has opportunity to continue to receive information which confirms or undermines earlier judgments.
d. Bulletins, leaflets and circulars: No extension publication is complete until someone has measured “how we are doing,” what changes have reader made partly at least, because they read the booklet. For assessing the impact, of bulletins, leaflets and circulars, check list in Appendix II can be used.
e. Radio :Evaluation of radio should be considered on two levels- (a) How am I doing? Does the listener accept me as a possible broadcaster? Since there is no way of knowing how all the listener feel about you as a broadcaster, they will have to get opinion of announcers, co-workers, family, friends and especially of yourself.
f. Training to farmers and village leaders: Effective evaluation of training must be based on pre-determined objectives. There is no other way to measure. advancement of knowledge of the farmers and village leaders. The following questions may help in evaluation of farmers training programme and field days
Major Considerations of Evaluation:
There are six major considerations for conducting the evaluation. These are:
- Objectives of the programmes or activity,
- Action taken to reach the objectives and the methods used,
- Collection, analysis and interpretation of valid and reliable evidence (data) indicating what happened as a result of the action taken,
- Comparison of the actual and anticipated result,
- Drawing conclusion from the comparisons, and
- Using the findings to guide, articulate and improve the future programme of action.
Mr. Allah Dad Khan is former DG Extension, KPK
Mr. Junaid Hafeez is Director, Agrihunt:
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