In association with

  • West
  • NHS

Training Resources

On this page you will find a range of training resources. Below are locally produced videos you can access immediately giving a basic introduction to the evaluation cycle. On the right hand side are details of evaluation related training courses provided by different institutions in the West of England. Some of these are free of charge, and some come with a course fee.

What is Evidence-informed Commissioning?

This short video gives you real-world insight into evidence-informed commissioning, as told by commissioners, GPs and other staff working in the West of England. It explains why it is so important in our current climate and succinctly sets the scene and context. You may want to share it in a meeting or show it at the beginning of a teaching session. (Duration: 3:20)

Why is Evaluation Important?

This animated ‘Lego’ video is the first in a series of three. It succinctly explains what evaluation is, how it differs from monitoring and how it links with quality improvement. If you are delivering evaluation training, you may wish to show it within the sessions. (Duration: 2:57)

I Need to do an Evaluation, Where do I Start?

The approach used in the Evaluation Works toolkit is a five-step cycle, based on ‘Plan – Do – Study – Act (PDSA)’, with an initial step added. Working through these videos, alongside cross referencing the evaluation toolkit, will provide you with knowledge, skills and resources to start planning your evaluation.

Video 1

This video explains Step 1 (Identify & Understand): identify your stakeholders and understand the purpose of the service in order to ensure a clear and useful evaluation. (Duration: 3:16)

Video 2

This video explains Step 2 (Assess): clarify the purpose of your evaluation. (Duration: 1:53)

Video 3

This video explains how to define the aims and objectives of your evaluation, the key component of Step 3 (Plan). Taking time to nail this is the secret to a high-impact final evaluation report. It also makes for an engaging practical group activity to include in your local face-to-face evaluation training.  (Duration: 3:49).

Video 4

This video, covering Step 4 (Do) highlights different ways of approaching data collection in an evaluation – their pros and cons – all through tasting and describing grapes! It can be watched standalone, or you might like to run the grape tasting activity in your face-to-face workshop to make the session more interactive. (Duration: 5:33)

Planning your Evaluation

This second ‘Lego’ video outlines the many factors that are important to consider when planning your evaluation and will help you choose which type of evaluation is suitable for you. (Duration: 4:08)

Evaluation and Data Collection Tools

The third and final ‘Lego’ video considers tools that are available for your evaluation, and different approaches to data collection. (Duration: 3:38)

We are very grateful to Michael Harris, Learning Technologist, UWE Bristol for his time and expertise in producing the Evaluation Works steps videos.

Where can I find the Workshop Slides?

This slide deck of 28 slides is used to deliver a 2-hour workshop called ‘Getting started with Evaluation’ to commissioners across the West of England footprint. It is available for download on this site through the link above. The slides may be adapted for use in your local training session; speaker notes are included. Please acknowledge ARC West and the West of England AHSN as the original creators when you use or adapt these slides.

While evaluation comes in many shapes and sizes, its key purpose is to help us to develop a deeper understanding of how best to improve health care

Health Foundation, 2015

Evaluation-related training courses

If you know of a course provider to add or you cannot find what you are looking for do get in touch on

NIHR ARC West run a number of introductory courses that focus on developing skills around producing and using evidence including those in evaluation. Courses are generally one day in duration and all are free to staff from partner organisations and the voluntary sector in the West of England. The latest courses can be seen here. They also provide links to other relevant online resources.




University of Bristol School of Social and Community Medicine also run a programme of short courses (typically 3-5 days duration) covering a range of health service research skills. More information can be found here.


People in Health West of England run a number of training courses to support evaluators and researchers with engaging and involving patients and the public. Find out more here.