Evaluating Participation: A guide and toolkit for health and social care practitioners

This guide, written by Gary McGrow and Lesley Greenaway for the Scottish Health Council, was developed as a tool for evaluating public involvement and participation in health services. It is designed for assessing the way the way in which a participation project has been undertaken and the results of that have come about from that activitity.


"NHS Boards need to ensure that people have a say in decisions about their care and in the development of local health services. It is one of the commitments set out in the Scottish Government's Better Health, Better Care: Action Plan to develop a "mutual NHS" where health services meet the needs and preferences of individuals. “Participation refers to the service user or public involvement processes by which perceptions and opinions of those involved are incorporated into decision making.”

Involving communities, patients, carers, NHS staff and the public is a very important part of improving the quality of health services. The views, perceptions and feedback on local health services of these stakeholders are invaluable for learning and improvement, and evaluating their involvement will check how well NHS Boards are listening. An inclusive process must be able to demonstrate that the NHS listens, is supportive and takes account of views and suggestions. Stakeholders have to be involved at an early stage and throughout the process."


  • Section 1: Evaluating Participation   5
    • Benefits and challenges of evaluating participation   6
    • Developing an appropriate evaluation framework   6
  • Section 2: Evaluation Essentials   8
    • Common evaluation terminology  8
    • Defining evaluation   9
    • Evaluation questions  10
    • Evaluation stages  11
    • Ethical considerations   16
    • Using evaluation findings to drive improvement  17
  • Section 3: Evaluation Frameworks and Logic Models  18
    • Logic models  18
    • Using the logic model to develop an evaluation plan   19
    • Other relevant evaluation models – LEAP and VOiCE   20
  • Evaluating Participation – Toolkit 25
    • A Checklist for Evaluating Participation   26
    • Evaluation Question Bank  27
    • Scottish Health Council Ethics Checklist  30
    • Using evaluation findings to drive improvement – Review Template   31
    • Example 1: Participation Event Evaluation Template  32
    • Example 2: Event Evaluation Template – Focused on process   34
    • Example 3: Logic Model Template  35


McGrow, G. and Greenaway, L. (2013). Evaluating Participation A guide and toolkit for health and social care practitioners, Scottish Health Council. Retrieved from: http://www.scottishhealthcouncil.org/publications/research/evaluation_toolkit.aspx#.VBjd3vQW18F

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A special thanks to this page's contributors
Information Officer, Scottish Health Council.
Glasgow, United Kingdom.


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