The Call for Proposals is Now Closed.

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CALL FOR PROPOSALS:

THE 3RD ANNUAL EMERGENT VOICES IN EVALUATION (EViE) CONFERENCE

GREENSBORO, NORTH CAROLINA

FRIDAY, MARCH 15, 2019

Hosted by the Educational Research Methodology Department at UNC Greensboro

Keynote speaker: Dr. Thomas Schwandt, Professor Emeritus in the Department of Educational Psychology at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

This call for proposal abstracts is directed toward graduate and other post-secondary students involved in evaluation practice and research.

The deadline for submitting a proposal is Friday, February 1, 2019 at 11:59PM EST.

***Important Dates***

Friday, February 1, 2019: Deadline for Submissions (11:59PM EST)

Friday, February 8, 2019: Notification of Proposal Acceptance Decision

Friday, March 15, 2019: Conference at UNC Greensboro Elliott University Center (8AM – 4PM EST)

EViE 2019 Overview

The EViE conference will be held in the Elliott University Center on the beautiful UNC Greensboro campus located in Greensboro, NC. The design and format of this year’s conference is intended to create Opportunities for attendees to engage in sustained dialogue around the theme throughout the day. The schedule of events will include:

I. a pre-conference social networking event with Dr. Schwandt on the evening of Thursday, March 14, 2019

II. a morning keynote address from Dr. Thomas Schwandt, Professor Emeritus in the Department of Educational Psychology at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

III. concurrent conference presentations by graduate students

IV. a closing dialogue with Dr. Schwandt to reflect on the day’s emergent themes

EViE 2019 Theme: “The Role of Evaluation in Society”

The practice of evaluation has grown to occupy an influential space in the current social and political landscape (Dahler-Larsen, 2012). This elevated status has stimulated discussion about the role of evaluation in society, as debates previously confined to the field’s internal dialogue are increasingly reflected in public discourse. Social and political shifts toward “data-driven decision-making” and “evidence-based practice” have obvious implications for the field, but clarity and certainty regarding the role of evaluators and evaluation are not an inevitable product of an expanding “evaluation society” (Dahler-Larsen, 2012). The field’s place in society is a matter of whether and how evaluation serves the public good, how ethics influence and shape evaluation practice, where the responsibilities of evaluators begin and end, and to what extent the field should identify as a unique profession.

In developing a theme for EViE 2019, we considered the role of evaluation in society to be both an urgent topic for conversation in our current socio-political climate and a lasting and universally relevant issue in the field. In this call for proposals, we highlight four key areas which are central to this discussion and offer guiding questions to stimulate thought. We also encourage those submitting proposals to expand and personalize the theme to fit their own conceptualizations of the role of evaluation in society.

● Public good: William (2016) suggests that the public good includes “better informed citizens leading to improved democracy and a more inclusive society and knowledge conceived of as an end in itself” (p. 622). These aspirational characteristics of society align with the goals of many evaluators who seek to contribute to the alleviation of inequalities and promote social justice, social mobility, and equal access to resources for historically underrepresented groups (Johnson et al., 2009; Mathison, 2018). How does evaluation contribute to the public good? How does evaluation maintain or challenge the status quo?

● Ethics: Historically, ethics has been characterized as good or bad behavior associated with evaluator (mis)conduct and protection of the evaluation participant (Morris, 2015) based on standards or principles. Many scholars have challenged this limited view of ethics and instead encouraged greater examination through relational ethics (Rossman & Rallis, 2003), evaluator and stakeholder values in shaping evaluation practice (Barnett & Munslow, 2014), and the influence of evaluation principles on practice in achieving societal goals (Worthen, 2001). Together, these ideas suggest ethics are neither value-neutral, nor absent from the epistemological dispositions of evaluators, the conduct of evaluation, or a profession’s core values and aspirations (Schwandt, 2017). What values frame the ethical stances or decision-making processes of novice evaluators in their evaluation design, methodologies, and epistemologies? How do emerging evaluators bring together their own ethical positions with those espoused by the field to inform their practice?

● Responsibility: Given the interdisciplinary nature of evaluation, evaluators may find themselves taking on additional roles (e.g., educators, advocates, or democratic professionals) (Schwandt, 2017). Depending on the program goals, evaluation capacity, and context, these roles may be dynamic and evolve, especially as conditions and needs change. Under what conditions do novice evaluators adopt certain roles? What criteria or standards can guide novice evaluators to ensure that they are taking on an appropriate role in a given evaluation context?

● Professionalization: Evaluation’s identity as a profession concerns the degree to which consensus can be built regarding the skills and knowledge at the core of evaluation practice, what it means to conduct “quality” evaluation, and who is granted access to the practice (Jacob & Boisvert, 2010; Schwandt, 2015). Evidence of a shift toward professionalization can be found in the competencies and standards put forth by organizations such as the American Evaluation Association, the European Evaluation Society, and the Canadian Evaluation Society. As student evaluators, to what extent does — or should — your education and training reflect a core set of skills or competencies? To what extent is the “heterogeneity, diversity, and amorphousness” of evaluation practice compatible with a shift toward professionalization (Rossi, Lipsey, & Freeman, 2004, p. 394)?

Presentation Formats

Topical Presentations: Presenters will have 10 minutes to share their work and 5 minutes for questions and discussion. Presentations should raise or address questions related to this year’s conference theme. Presentations may be based on completed or ongoing: research/evaluation, practice-based reflections, or theoretical considerations.

Roundtable Discussions: Presenters will lead a 5-10 minute opening statement on an evaluation topic of choice (topical roundtable) or an evaluation case study, experience, or dilemma (vignette). Roundtable participants will have 20 minutes for discussion.

Submission of Proposal Submission proposals will be collected here: EViE Proposal Submission. Please use the link to submit a proposal by February 1, 2019, at 11:59 EST. Email confirmations will be sent upon successful submission of the proposal.

Proposal Format

All proposals are to be authored and presented by graduate students. Co-authored work among graduate students is also welcomed. Submissions will require presenter information (i.e., session title, author name(s) and affiliation(s), and contact information) as well as information about the presentation type and equipment requests. Proposals for all presentation formats must include an abstract that discusses the objectives, perspectives or theoretical framework, methods and/or techniques, results, conclusions, and references (up to a maximum of 250 words, excluding references).

For roundtable submissions only, a description of plans for audience engagement (up to a maximum of 100 words) is also required.

Accommodations

Presenters will be responsible for transportation and accommodation costs associated with attending the conference. However, in an effort to make the conference accessible to as many graduate students as possible, a free lodging/billeting option will be made available for graduate students on a first-come-first-served basis. A page with lodging options will be available shortly with hotels close to the UNC Greensboro campus listed.

PDF of the Call:  2019 Call for Proposals Download

 

UNC Greensboro         UNC Greensboro ERM Department

 

Questions? Please reach out to us below.

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