Evaluation Network of the Missouri River Basin

Google Site (open to public)

Google Group embedded in above site
(Learning Circle's Intranet)

Learning Circle Plan


The goals for this learning circle are to establish a communication system that will explore, build and sustain a professional organization among practicing program evaluators in MT, WY, ND, SD, NE, IA, KS, and MO with aims toward becoming an affiliate of the American Evaluation Association.  To learn more about AEA affiliates see: http://www.eval.org/aboutus/organization/affiliates.asp.


Program evaluators will be invited by email to attend conference and/or help establish new organization.  Those who respond will be given option to join Google Group for this Learning Circle.


Participants were solicited from:

· a list of 70 Nebraska evaluators (primarily university-based), as well as students, and other professionals interested in building evaluation capacity from community organizations, foundations and agencies

· a list of emails from targeted states provided by AEA for one-time use

· members from targeted states on the Association of University Centers on Disabilities’ Council on Research and Evaluation

Final selection will be based on:

· diverse expertise and geographic representation

· willingness to participate with proposed tools


It was decided not to explain the learning circle concept in order to emphasize the goals to first recruit attendance at a professional development conference in Omaha that would be followed by an initial organizational meeting.

Methods and Instruments:

A mix of public (Google site) and private or intranet (imbedded Google Group) is to be utilized as an online environment for this organization.  This mix will provide online resources for public information, as well as conducting the business of building and sustain the organization.

Roles and Responsibilities:

Each participant will equal opportunity to initiate discussions.  As the organization is formed, roles and topics for discussion will be defined.

 Time Line:

Week 1 (May 4-10) – Provide background on yourself and evaluation practice in your vicinity by creating a page and/or editing your profile

Week 2 (May 11-17) – Discuss whether this communication forum suits the needs of this group.  Select among “Suggested Topics” for possible discussion items for the coming weeks.

Weeks 3 & 4 (May 18-31) – Agendas to be determined in Week 2.

Week 5 (June 1-7) – Prepare a summary report for June 9 meeting in Omaha

Week 6 (June 8-14) – Summarize and post June 9 meeting in Omaha.

Week 7 (June 15-21) – Provide feedback from June 9 meeting and determine next steps.


Time spent by participants and faciliattors will be the only cost involved.  It is expected that organizations and institutions will (continue to) allow participants to utilize company time toward this opportunity to collaborate.

Deliverable and Dissemination:

The product(s) will be developed within the Google Group and will be disseminated to the larger group via the publicly accessible interim website for this organization.  The Google Group is a subset of the interim website already established at


There may be some difficulty in establishing Google Group access.  However, there are work-arounds for those who have the desire to participate.


This project will continue to facilitate the business of the Evaluation Network of the Missouri River Basin.