Document Type


Publication Date


Journal / Book Title

Applied Developmental Science


The importance of engaging in high quality program evaluation is a generally accepted principle underscored by external pressure from funders. High quality evaluation necessarily begins with good evaluation planning. This paper outlines Evolutionary Evaluation and specifically the Systems Evaluation Protocol, an approach that emphasizes practitioner-evaluator collaboration, results in tangible products for programs, and culminates in an evaluation plan appropriate for a specific program’s lifecycle stage. A case study of Inspire>Aspire, a program developed by Character Scotland and used widely in Scotland’s schools and elsewhere is presented and includes a discussion of creative breakthroughs, or ‘Aha!’ Moments, that occurred.



Published Citation

Urban, J. B., Linver, M. R., Thompson, J., Davidson, R., & Lorimer, D. (2018). Evaluating youth character development programs using evolutionary evaluation and the systems evaluation protocol. Applied Developmental Science, 22(4), 245-257.