This book, from SAGE’s Evaluation in Practice series, considers variants of experimental evaluation designs, including those that are not commonly used but could be with much greater frequency. It also includes instructions for how to set up such experiments within program processes to learn about the effects of improvement efforts.

Variants of the Experimental Design

This chapter presents several variants of the experimental evaluation design, variants that are suited to providing information about program design and improvement decisions. These designs include randomizing to three and four (and potentially more) groups, where those groups represent distinct alternative treatments of some sort. They also include alternative timing: rolling out an intervention across multiple locations over time, for example, so that all can gain access to the intervention, but the timing of when they do is randomly decided such that some gain access immediately while others serve as a control group before they gain access. After defining and offering examples for each design, I suggest how certain program characteristics lend themselves to certain designs.

These varied designs fall ...

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