Evaluate and analyse

We can recommend some cultural sector specific tools that you might be able to use to gather and analyse your evidence.

  • The Cultural Learning Evidence Champion’s Handbook from the RSA is designed to make it easier to ‘do’ evidence and evaluation and provides a useful framework for planning what you want to measure and how to go about doing your evaluation. 
  • Inspiring Learning for All is a self-help improvement framework that has been developed for museums, libraries and archives. A significant part of this framework helps to provide evidence of the impact of your activities through the Generic Learning Outcomes.
  • Arts Council England have been working to look at quality and have developed the Quality Metrics and specifically for work with, by and for children and young people Quality Principles, read more below about these.

When considering how you will measure delivery of the outcomes you want to evaluate you could also look a the the Education Endowment Foundation’s Spectrum database. (Spectrum stands for: Social, Psychological, Emotional, Concepts of self, and Resilience: Understanding and Measurement.) This is aimed at schools, not the cultural sector. You can search a list of different tools which are categorised a number of ways including by domain measured, how easy or difficult they are to use and which age of children they are appropriate for. 

The Young Foundation publication A framework of outcomes for young people includes a list of tools for measuring the impact of work on the lives of young people. Again, while not specifically for cultural activities the tools are robust and applicable to many cultural learning projects. 

Arts Council England Quality Framework

Arts Council England has developed seven Quality Principles for work by with and for children and young people. The seven Quality principles which have been co-authored with the sector and with young people are:

  1. Striving for excellence and innovation 
  2. Being authentic
  3. Being exciting, inspiring and engaging
  4. Ensuring a positive and inclusive experience
  5. Actively involving children and young people
  6. Enabling personal progression
  7. Developing belonging and ownership

Work to develop the principles included:

  • commissioning the National Foundation of Educational Research (NFER) and Shared Intelligence to undertake a literature review of a range of quality frameworks used across the cultural sector
  • publishing literature review findings, including suggestions around seven quality principles and identifying potential emerging principles

Read more on the Arts Council England website.