Evidence and data collection for education start-ups

This guide is for people setting up new projects in the education sector. It offers step-by-step advice on what evidence and data to collect, and how to collect it. It is based on NPC’s experience of supporting around 40 organisations through the Young Foundation’s Young Academy education incubator programme.

TYoung Foundation logohere are an increasing number of new social ventures aiming to tackle educational inequality. With any attempt to address social problems—especially when an idea or organisation is in its infancy—collecting evidence for what is working is crucial. It helps ideas and ventures get buy-in from potential partners, stakeholders and funders. Most importantly, it can help ensure an approach is refined and improved to achieve success.

NPC has been supporting organisations enrolled in The Young Foundation’s Young Academy to establish a culture of evidence as they implement and improve their programmes. We developed this guide as part of this support and training. It outlines how organisations working in the education sector can get start or improve their data and evidence collection.

In it we outline the importance of evidence, the challenges some organisations face, and then walk through the key 3 stages of how to approach evidence collection:

  • Stage 1: Develop a proof of concept or theory of change
  • Stage 2: Look at the existing evidence
  • Stage 3: Test your theory of change by collecting evidence

NPC and The Young Foundation are sharing this guide in the hope that it helps other organisations in their approach to evidence and data collection.

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