Research > Systematic Reviews of Evidence
Evaluation provides the evidence on the effectiveness of a program. However, the quality of evidence matters. In our systematic review and meta-analysis studies, we form a catalog to document
- the impacts of several implemented policies and programs targeting a specific outcome, and
- the key program elements, such as the program components, content, design, implementation, and challenges in implementation.
Evidence quality rating system
In order to identify best evidence-based practices, evaluation studies of each program can be rated in terms of evidence quality. The quality can be determined by the
- evaluation design (e.g., randomized trial, quasi-experimental),
- internal validity to determine causal effects (e.g., existence of comparison groups, equivalence of intervention and comparison groups at baseline),
- generalization of results to other populations and settings,
- reliability and validity of data on outcomes, and
- validity of statistical conclusions (e.g., statistical adjustment for selected measures, handling missing data) (for only the quantitative evaluation studies).
An evaluation study with a high rating means that the study is well designed to estimate the effectiveness of the intervention. A moderate rating means that the study is well designed but has some weaknesses. A low rating means that one cannot know if changes in outcomes are due to the intervention or other factors.
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