All programs should strive to incorporate evaluation activities into their ongoing efforts to reduce child abuse and neglect and improve the well-being of children, youth, and families. However, it is important to choose evaluation strategies that are best suited to measure the program's intended outcomes based on factors such as program design and characteristics of the families and communities they serve. Use the following resources to find reports that summarize the effectiveness of general child abuse prevention programs and evaluations of specific types or models of prevention programs.
Accountability and Evaluation
ZERO to THREE
Explains how regular and ongoing review and use of data on the health, development, and well-being of toddlers and infants can guide continuous improvement and inform planning, policy, and practice. The website provides access to featured resources related to evaluation.
Applying the Research and Evaluation Provisions of the Family First Prevention Services Act
Describes the requirements necessary to evaluate prevention programs in accordance with the Family First Prevention Services Act, including levels of evidence needed for each program category in the Title IV-E Prevention Services Clearinghouse.
The Best Kind of Prevention: Evidence-Based Prevention
Prevention Action Alliance
Discusses the importance of prevention programs, including an overview of what a prevention program needs to be considered evidence-based and access to examples of evidence-based prevention programs.
Child Welfare Evaluation Virtual Summit Series
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Children's Bureau
Presents a series of short videos that each describe an evaluation-related topic, and many propose solutions to common evaluation problems and direct viewers to additional tools and resources. The videos are intended to help build capacity for improved evaluation in child welfare, promoting further dialog among evaluation stakeholders and disseminating information.
Evaluating Community Programs and Initiatives
Center for Community Health and Development at the University of Kansas
Provides a framework for program evaluation and community intervention research, discusses the importance of stakeholder involvement, and considers strategies to use evaluation results to improve programs.
Evaluation Prevention Services in Child Welfare: Evaluation Approaches, Challenges, and Solutions (PDF - 739 KB)
Melz, Murphy, & Graham (2020)
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families, Children's Bureau & James Bell Associates
Presents findings from a federally funded report on varying prevention programs that have been studied in addition to types of research methods and strategies to overcome challenges presented during the studies.
University of Wisconsin-Extension, Program Development and Evaluation
Provides information and resources pertaining to effective evaluation planning, method selection, and analysis and use, all of which are necessary to design and implement a program evaluation.
Evaluation Resource Guide for Children's Bureau Discretionary Grantees, Second Edition (PDF - 628 KB)
James Bell Associates (2018)
Explains how researchers and program evaluators can design program evaluations specific to the child welfare context. The guide provides background information on program evaluation, explores evaluation in the field of child welfare, explains research design and methodology, reviews data collection and analysis, and more.
A Framework for Program Evaluation
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Guides public health professionals in their use of program evaluation and provides a practical, nonprescriptive tool designed to summarize and organize essential elements of program evaluation.
A Video Series for Building Evidence on Effective Programs
Child Trends (2018)
Presents videos that summarize workshops on building evidence for effective programs. Videos two through five cover the steps in the process of becoming an evidence-based program.