This training will provide the opportunity to learn about and gain confidence in the processes for developing a ToC. It is a practical course using a step-by-step approach and proven techniques for generating and exploring change options, developing robust and evidenced pathways for change, testing assumptions and integrating the ToC into MEL plans. The course will use a case study to work through the stages of developing a ToC at programme level. The principles and stages of development can also be applied to organisational, thematic (e.g. advocacy) or project level ToCs, and their inter-relationship will be explored during the course.
This course is particularly relevant for those with an understanding of the concept of ToCs but limited experience of the development and/or use of ToCs. Creating a ToC is both a design and monitoring process and therefore valuable for programme and MEL staff and those expecting to participate in developing a ToC or managing/supporting a project with an existing ToC. It is also suitable for those wanting to know more about the value and practicalities of this approach for design, implementation and M&E of projects, programmes and/or strategies; for example trustees or funders.
The live sessions are designed in a way to maximise interaction between participants, through skilled facilitation and techniques such as virtual whiteboards/scrapbooks and break-out groups. You will have access to additional materials such as videos and external resources for background reading, all accessed through INTRAC’s e-platform.
On this course you will also get an opportunity to attend a facilitated Q&A session with the course trainer as well as engage in group work.
Summary of course content
- What is a theory of change? How do they differ from results-based frameworks?
- Introduction to different approaches to developing a ToC and to a step-by-step tool and case study used during this course to allow for practical application of learning.
- Considering and understanding how change happens, particularly in the context of agreeing and achieving outcomes.
- Exploring the roles and contribution of different interested parties through stakeholder mapping and analysis.
- Unpacking the importance of meaningful collaboration, inclusion and local ownership of identifying required change
- Identifying the inputs and contributions need to lead to the desired changes, including potential sources of those inputs.
- Considering how to identify and manage the impact of power, influence and other variables when designing for change.
- Identifying, exploring and discussing the key elements of causal pathways of change (in projects/programmes and/or organisations).
- Consideration of the role and value of ToC and the PoC approach for advocacy projects.
- Identifying and considering the assumptions we make about how change happens.
- Exploring how to analyse the relative importance of a range of assumptions, and the value of evidence-based and verified assumptions.
- Using the case study and group work to develop strategies for managing assumptions
- Exploring the relationship between ToCs and MEL practices to ensure appropriate review of both the progress against a ToC and the ongoing relevance of the ToC and assumptions.
- Considering how to ensure that adequate data are available to critically review and test key assumptions.
- Exploring how to systematically review and reflect on a ToC as projects are implemented and change (both expected and unexpected) happens.
- Consideration of interested parties’ expectations of a ToC and a MEL/management process from design to implementation and end of a project/programme.
Course fee: GBP 399
Training access scholarships are available for small NGOs /civil society organisations. For more information, please visit our FAQ.
Application deadline: 24 May 2024. We may close the applications sooner than advertised if the course is fully booked.
Sue Newport has over 25 years of experience in international development, Sue brings a wealth of expertise to various causes, particularly women’s health, adolescent health, and fighting modern slavery. As an independent consultant, she now collaborates with diverse clients on projects that spark positive change.Sue’s passion lies in crafting robust pathways for impact – through developing theories of change (ToC), logframes, and monitoring, evaluation, accountability, and learning (MEAL) systems. She has years of experience as a trainer for organizations like Bond, Crown Agents, the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology and natural England and she is also an associate lecturer at Brighton & Sussex Medical School on a variety of subjects, including MEAL Her portfolio boasts leading and participating in evaluations for organizations like the World Bank, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, UNICEF and others. Sue also supports organizations in refining their ToCs and MEAL plans, ensuring optimal impact measurement and accountability.