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How We Model Matters – Visualizing Program Theories

Sebastian Lemire, Allan Porowski, Kaity Mumma

White Paper

April 6, 2023

Program theories are visuals that illustrate how a program is intended to bring about a desired outcome. For program developers, program theories can help staff gain a shared understanding of their role within the program and what they need to do to make an impact. For evaluators, program theories can help organize an evaluation design by providing a framework for understanding what to measure and how different parts of a program are hypothesized to affect outcomes.

This methods guide provides visual strategies and real-world examples to promote creativity in how program developers and evaluators articulate the components and intended outcomes of their programs.