Learn more about the B-WET national evaluation system and how you can participate.
Evaluation is the systematic collection of information (often called “data”), from a variety of sources and using a variety of methodologies, that monitor and measure changes brought about by a project or program. In this way, evaluation is both a process and a tool for measuring change. B-WET has created a national evaluation system to monitor its program activities and outcomes. Results of this evaluation will be used to improve the program.
The evaluation system is designed to answer the following four questions about the B-WET program:
MWEE implementation questions
- To what extent do regional B-WET programs support grantees in implementing Meaningful Watershed Educational Experiences (MWEEs)?
- How are MWEEs implemented by grantees and teachers?
MWEE outcome questions
- To what extent do B-WET-funded projects increase teachers’ knowledge of watershed science concepts, their confidence in their ability to integrate MWEEs into their teaching practices, and the likelihood that they will implement high quality MWEEs?
- To what extent do B-WET-funded projects increase students’ knowledge of watershed concepts, attitudes toward watersheds, inquiry and stewardship skills, and aspirations towards protecting watersheds?
We are currently analyzing evaluation data collected between 2016 and 2020. Once the analysis is complete, we plan to make changes to our evaluation approach going forward. Come back soon as we will post aggregate results of the analysis here.
Information for Current B-WET Grantees
Are you a grantee who has been asked to participate in the B-WET evaluation system, or a grant applicant who is considering how you might be able to in the future?
Please note: the B-WET program managers have decided to pause our national evaluation data collection through fiscal year 2022 (through September, 2022). This decision was based on the fact that the national evaluation instruments are not designed to assess project implementation during the ongoing impacts of the pandemic. We may request alternative national evaluation metrics in the interim and will share more information regarding how grantees can contribute if and when we determine which metrics make sense given the current teaching context.
What this means for you and teacher participants in your professional development (PD):
- grantees will not receive the annual grantee survey;
- if you have PD as part of your project, you do not need to submit teacher contacts to our system;
- if you have previously submitted teacher contacts for PD ending through September, 2022, these teachers will not be surveyed going forward; and
- we will not send out the annual follow-up MWEE survey this year or next. (This survey would normally go to teachers who previously completed PD.)
Importantly, project level evaluation is still required. The national evaluation system complements the excellent project-level evaluation work conducted by grantees. We ask that current grantees please continue to conduct your project level evaluation work as required in your grant agreement and share this information with NOAA in your reports. Please contact your regional program manager if you have any questions about changes to your planned project evaluation activities.
B-WET National Evaluation Resources
A literature review of watershed education-related research to inform NOAA B-WET’s evaluation system - Completed September, 2011 by Dr. Michaela Zint, University of Michigan
For more information you may contact your regional B-WET program manager or the B-WET National Coordinator, Bronwen Rice, 202-482-6797, firstname.lastname@example.org.