First Method Monday: How to choose the right method for your work?

Welcome to our first Method Monday!

I’d like to kick-off this first Method Monday with a little discussion about choosing the right method for your work. I’d like to start the conversation by offering a few tips, and i’d love to hear from others, too.

First, ask yourself, what am i trying to learn? Let your evaluation questions guide you and only collect what you need to collect to answer those key questions. Then,consider what type of data and from whom do you need to answer your evaluation questions.

  • Quantitative data can help you best answer what, who, when and where questions; whereas qualitative data can best answer why or how questions.

  • Think about from whom you need to collect info, and that can help you choose a method: Individuals (interview, survey) or Groups (focus groups, observational data)

  • Consider who your beneficiaries/clients are. What’s the best way to engage with them, to make sure you get the best data possible.

  • Finally, consider what’s feasible for your resources and time frame. How much collection and analysis time is needed for each method?

I’d also like to share an interesting resource: What Works’ Tools & Approches Matrix

I’d love to hear other tips that people would like to share!