Author name: Katie Fox

Students work around a table with many books and laptops open
January 2022

Intro Can I trust this information? We use information constantly to learn, make decisions, and form opinions. Every day library staff in every setting strive to teach people how to find the information they need and how to identify trustworthy sources. But what is trustworthy? How can you tell? What about when sources contradict each […]

How to observe without being totally awkward

October 2021

Happy fall to all you data nerds out there! We appreciate you being here with us. Last time we discussed how to get permission from your participants when you want to do an observation. You might be wondering how you can actually do the observation without it being completely awkward and perhaps even cringey. Today […]

How to observe: Ask first!

September 2021

Welcome back! We left off talking about why you would use observations to collect data. Observation can be a great data collection tool when you want to see how different people interact with each other, a space, or a passive program. Observation is also helpful when it is difficult for someone to answer a question […]

Why Observe? Watch and Learn

July 2021

When I was a kid, one of my favorite summer activities was staring at hummingbirds. I would sit for hours, moving as little as possible, while I took notes about everything I saw. (Yes, I was a pretty weird eight year old.) I wanted to ask the hummingbirds so many questions, but I don’t speak […]

Ready to meet your (data) match? Introducing number data and story data

January 2021

Hey, there! Welcome to 2021! We’re glad to see you here. It’s a new year and we’re ready to dive into research methods. Not what you expected to rejuvenate you in 2021? Well, hold on—research methods are actually pretty rad. First, though, what are they?  Research Methods Research methods are the different ways we can […]

Happy Holidays!

December 2020

We have loved having you all with us on our data journey! We are putting our blog series “Between a Graph and a Hard Place” on hold in December. We’ll be back in January with more exciting information about doing your own evaluation, including specific ways of collecting data like surveys, focus groups, and observations. […]

Not creeping continued: may we have this data?

October 2020

Welcome back! Last time we talked about how to protect the privacy of evaluation participants. Today we’re going to continue our discussion of research ethics with informed consent and how to work with vulnerable populations. Informed Consent In order to be a researcher and not a “creeper,” you need to: 1) ask for participants’ permission, […]

Research Ethics: How to collect data without being a creeper

October 2020

When you read the word “creeper,” you might think of something like this: “A person who does weird things, like stares at you while you sleep, or looks at you for hours through a window.” That definition of “creeper” was written by the user Danya at Urban Dictionary.  Both the examples mentioned in the definition […]

The Logic Model: Take it one step at a time

September 2020

When your organization designs a program, service or experience, it’s helpful to think intentionally. What do you hope happens? How would you know if it did? We wrote about determining the outcomes for your efforts last time. Identifying outcomes is an important first step in planning and evaluating a program, service or experience. What do […]

Finding your way: the difference between research and evaluation

August 2020

Have you ever stayed up late, staring up at the night sky, wondering “What is the difference between evaluation and research?” No?! Well, even if you haven’t lost sleep pondering this, we think it’s an important topic. Why? In this blog series, we’ll be focused on how to do an evaluation: how to determine the […]