Types of Training Evaluation

-A look at Formative (Before) versus Summative (After) evaluation of training.
It´s no news to trainers that they have to evaluate their training program to provide evidence that it works. But what method of evaluation should you conduct? Here´s a look at formative (before) versus summative (after) training evaluation.

Formative Evaluation

What is it?
Formative evaluation occurs while a training program is forming or occurring. For example: a formative evaluation could be a pilot test, a structured walk-through, a preview or collecting continuous feedback from participants in a training program in order to modify it as needed.

How To Conduct Formative Evaluation
Here are several steps to conducting formative evaluation:

Answer the following questions:
Summative Evaluation

What Is It?
Summative evaluation takes place after the training program has occurred. Most articles about training evaluations, and Kirkpatrick´s famous types of evaluation are summative. For example: summative evaluation could be evaluating the attitudes and information learned after the training program has been conducted, or determining how the information provided is used back on the job.

How To Conduct Summative Evaluation
There are several methods to conducting summative evaluation:

Answer the following questions:
Most trainers are familiar with formal methods of evaluation after a training program (summative). Fewer may have thought seriously about the importance of formative evaluation (although no doubt they would have used some of the core formative approaches such as a pilot test). To get the best results use both forms of evaluation: formative and summative.

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