Scope evaluation

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It is important to take the time to consider carefully what the evaluation needs to do before thinking through possible evaluation designs.

Ensure all those who need to be consulted during this process are adequately involved.


The following items are potential outputs from this step. Where possible, it might be useful to research other deliverables that have also been shown to be effective.

  • Description of the programming that is going to be evaluated (the evaluand)
  • Theory of change and/or logic model
  • List of primary intended users and their uses for the evaluation
  • List of agreed key evaluation questions
  • Evaluation timeline
  • Evaluator qualities
  • Evaluation budget

These products inform the development of a formal Terms of Reference (ToR) or Request for Proposal (RFP) (see Step 3).

IDRC-specific information

IDRC staff and partners may wish to peruse previous evaluations, particularly in similar topic areas, to understand how scope can be delineated and defined in various circumstances. IDRC maintains, in its online open-access digital library, a repository of evaluations conducted throughout IDRC’s history.

IDRC staff can also access a repository of Evaluation Terms of Reference compiled by the Policy and Evaluation Division.

In this section

'Scope evaluation' is referenced in: