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.

Practical Considerations and Conclusion

Too often, researchers and practitioners believe that an experimental control group is denied services. This is not the case. Experimental evaluation designs need not involve an excluded control group. They can be a powerful tool for learning about the impacts both of programs overall as well as the component pieces of programs. Policy experiments can follow the lead of the private sector and increasingly use experiments for assessing which program models or various program designs are most effective. Using experiments for program learning and program improvement efforts is both feasible and practical.

This concluding chapter first raises some issues that researchers and practitioners will encounter as they implement these experimental designs in practice. Then it discusses the concept of road testing, ...

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