Program Evaluation Graduate Minor
Program evaluation is an area of inquiry that uses both quantitative and qualitative methods to address questions of concern to policy makers, administrators, managers, and, in some cases, program participants. In this era of competing developments—increased accountability and the democratization of research activity—knowledge of program evaluation is a useful and valuable commodity. The program evaluation minor is an interdisciplinary effort providing intensive study of the techniques and process of evaluation and policy research, in addition to the social and political context within which program evaluation occurs. The graduate minor in program evaluation offers a coordinated set of courses designed for students who wish to have the knowledge and skills necessary to conduct evaluations combined with their graduate majors or professional fields of study. Courses include readings, discussions, and assignments designed to develop the skills essential to professionals intending to use or conduct evaluation in non-profit and for-profit organizations.
Any student in any University of Minnesota graduate or professional program, regardless of college or enrollment, is encouraged to apply for this minor. Students must be admitted to the Graduate School and to a master's, doctoral, or professional degree program at the University of Minnesota. As with all graduate minors, a student must identify a minor adviser for the program evaluation minor. The minor adviser must be included in the student's committee and attend the final oral examination.
Master's Minor (9 credits)
The minor program for master's students is a minimum of 9 graduate-level semester credits. The following courses (or equivalents approved by Steering Committee) are required:
- OLPD 5501/EPSY 5243—Principles and Methods of Evaluation (3 cr) OR another introductory evaluation course
- OLPD 5502—Theory and Models of Evaluation (3 cr) OR OLPD 8502—Program Evaluation Theory and Models: Qualitative and Quantitative Alternatives (3 cr)
- OLPD 8596—Evaluation Internship (3 cr)
The program for an individual student will be developed by the student, the major adviser, and the director of graduate studies (DGS) of the program evaluation minor. With permission of the program evaluation minor DGS, students with sufficient background and previous course experience equivalent to one or more courses within the curriculum may apply for waiver of appropriate requirements and replace waived courses with additional electives to meet the 9 credit minimum.
Doctoral Minor (15 credits)
The minor program for doctoral students requires a minimum of 15 graduate-level semester credits. Credits from courses in the student's major department or, for Department of Organizational Leadership, Policy, and Development (OLPD) students in any of the non-evaluation concentrations, courses from their concentration do not count toward the minor. The following courses (or equivalents approved by Steering Committee) are required:
- OLPD 5501/EPSY 5243—Principles and Methods of Evaluation (3 cr)
- OLPD 5521—Cost and Economic Analysis in Educational Evaluation (3 cr)
- OLPD 8502—Program Evaluation Theory and Models: Qualitative and Quantitative Alternatives (3 cr)
- OLPD 8596—Evaluation Internship (3 cr)
Additional credits must be taken in courses selected from the list of elective courses below. The program for an individual student will be developed in consultation among the student, the major adviser, and the director of graduate studies (DGS) of the program evaluation minor. With the permission from the program evaluation minor DGS, students with sufficient background and previous course experience equivalent to one or more courses within the curriculum may apply for waiver of appropriate requirements and replace waived courses with additional electives to meet the 15 credit minimum.
Illustrative Elective Courses
An illustrative set of elective courses acceptable for the minor (additional courses may be approved by the Steering Committee):
- CI 8913—Interpretive Research (3 cr)
- OLPD 5056—Case Studies for Policy Research (3 cr)
- OLPD 5061—Ethnographic Research Methods (3 cr)
- OLPD 5524/EPSY 5246—Evaluation Colloquium (1-6 cr)
- OLPD 5841—Evaluation of OLPD (3 cr)
- OLPD 8015—Research Design and Educational Policy (3 cr)
- OLPD 8595/EPSY 8295—Evaluation Problems (1-6 cr)
- PA 5311—Program Evaluation (3 cr)
- PUBH 6852—Program Evaluation in Health and Mental Health Settings (2 cr)
- SW 8602—Direct Practice Evaluation (2 cr)
Prior admission into an established M.A. or Ph.D. is required. Students in the existing evaluation-related concentrations in organizational leadership, policy, and development or educational psychology are not allowed into the minor. Admission to the minor program will therefore be contingent upon enrollment in good standing within a recognized degree-granting program of the University of Minnesota Graduate School. Students interested in admission to the minor should contact the minor's Director of Graduate Studies. Admission requires the addition of the required minor coursework to the student's Graduate School degree program form and the minor DGS's signature on the form. Students must demonstrate relevant academic background and experience.
Revised December 21, 2015