System Evaluations

Business, Government and Non-Profit Organizations


Virtuoso Education Consulting supports organizations with program evaluation focused on desired outcomes by working with each client to develop a comprehensive evaluation plan that meets their individual needs.  Focusing on 3 essential steps,  referred to as the C.A.P. process, the Virtuoso team supports  organizations  to design the most appropriate evaluation methods to address the organizations overall goals, collect and analyzing both qualitative and quantitative data related to the topic of focus, and disseminating findings in a useful and meaningful way to guide an organizations decisions about next steps.









Systems Theory and Evaluation Planning


A system is a configuration of interacting, interdependent parts that are connected through a web of relationships, forming a whole that is greater than the sum of its parts. Systems are overlapping, nested, and networked; they have subsystems and operate within broader systems. All systems share certain basic attributes or conditions, called boundaries, relationships, and perspectives. Together, these system conditions generate patterns of  system-wide behavior that are called system dynamics.


System interventions seek to change system-wide patterns of behavior among participants by changing underlying system dynamics, structures, and conditions . These dynamic interactions  are essential to understand as they can be the root cause of undesired outcomes.


Systems thinking provides a perspective that emphasizes the patterns of interrelationships between parts and the whole rather than the parts in isolation . It also focuses on operational thinking (concentrating on causality and how behavior is generated), rather than factors thinking (listing the factors that influence or are correlated with some result). Systems thinking can help all stakeholders incorporate system dynamics into an evaluation’s design and methods. The more complex, interactive, and unstable the dynamics of a situation or intervention, the more helpful it is to use systems

thinking in planning and designing a system change evaluation.


Understand the Conditions and Dynamics of the Situation


In order to understand the conditions and dynamics of the system or situation targeted by a system change intervention, it is important to answer three sub-questions:

(1) what are the boundaries of the system or situation?

(2) how complex are the system’s relationships? And

(3) how diverse are the system’s purposes or perspectives?


Each of these key questions are central to our approach to successful evaluations.





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Rethinking Systems

                Rethinking Evaluations

   C- COLLECT information needed to operationalize goals related to a specific program


   A-ANALYZE  data collected  through focus groups, surveys, and  client data to identify areas of strength and outstanding needs


   P- PROVIDE  visually useful information that supports  program  sustainability or revision

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