SAMETRICA Glossary

This glossary describes the key concepts and terminology used throughout the SAMETRICA software.

 

Activity

An operation, intervention, action or work process performed. Inputs make the activities possible, while outputs are evidence that the activity occurred.

 

Data collection   

The process of gathering information in a systematic fashion in order to answer a research question, assess the validity of the chain of events identified in the logic model/impact framework and determine the extent to which outcomes are achieved. Data is collected using tools/instruments, which include surveys, interviews, focus groups, participant observation, usage of pre-existing administrative data, etc.

 

Data type

Type of data that will be collected for a given measure (e.g., multiple choice, text, integer, yes/no, date and decimal).

 

Demographic measures

Demographic measures help to understand the structure of a specific population or sub-group (e.g., age, place of residence, sex, income, race, education, etc.).

 

Entity

Entity refers to the type of software account (e.g., organization, department, program, fund recipient, etc.).

 

General measures

Includes all data collected that cannot be classified in other categories (e.g., administrative data such as project number and title).

 

Impact framework

An impact framework shows the big picture of how your program or initiative will deliver impact. It is also a tool to help monitor and measure whether your initiative is delivering your intended impact.

 

Immediate outcome

The immediate benefits or changes that stakeholders experience because of a program or initiative, such as a change in individuals’ knowledge and skills. Immediate means that change happens in the short-term. It does not mean temporary change.

 

Input

The financial and non-financial resources invested in implementing programs and initiatives (e.g., cash funds, staff time, volunteer time, etc.).

 

Intermediate outcome

Outcomes that are expected to occur when one or more immediate outcomes have been achieved, such as changes in behaviours, systems, policies, etc. While these outcomes do not happen immediately, they are still within a timeframe wherein the causal links between activities and outcomes are clearly defined.

 

Logic models

In SAMETRICA’s software, the Logic Model (also known as a results chain or an outcome map) is a sub-component of the Impact Framework. It lays out the causal relationships between the inputs, activities, outputs, and expected outcomes of a given program or initiative. Logic Models are developed and used by funders, managers, and evaluators to measure progress toward achieving expected outcomes.

 

Long-term outcomes

The most distant benefits or changes that stakeholders experience because of a program or initiative. These generally result from the successful achievement of immediate and intermediate outcomes and can be considered the end of the chain of events identified in the logic model.

 

Measures

A measure is a qualitative or quantitative metric that captures data related to a program or initiative, such as demographics, inputs, outputs, and outcome indicators.

 

Outcome

The clear description of a change that results from the implementation of a program or initiative. Unlike inputs and outputs, outcomes are not expressed in a way that can be measured – rather they are the description of an outcome and are measured by outcome indicators.

 

Outcome Indicator

An outcome indicator is a specific, observable and measurable characteristic that change or progress toward achieving a specific outcome has occurred.

 

Output

Measurable evidence that an activity has taken place, expressed in the form of volume, quantity or amount, that the activities of a program or initiative occurred (e.g., # of pamphlets produced, # of participants that attended a training, etc.).

 

Process measures

Measures how a program or initiative is delivered (e.g., required equipment, supplies, etc.).

 

Qualitative measures

Measures that cannot be expressed in numerical terms and can be either objective or subjective (e.g., participants’ judgment or perceptions).

 

Quantitative measures

Measures that can be expressed in numerical terms and can be either objective or subjective (i.e., the number of people trained).

 

Reporting structure/levels

The reporting structure classifies the different reporting levels among users in the software (e.g., grantee, funder).

 

Social impact

The effect that an intervention has on the well-being of communities, individuals, and families.

 

Stakeholders

Those who contribute, benefit or support a program or initiative. Stakeholders can include but are not limited to, program staff, end-users, decision makers, funders, and partners.

 

Theory of change

The rationale for why an intervention creates social impact, which consists of 3 key components:

1. Need for the activity

2. Description of the activity and,

3. Why the activity will have the desired impact.

 

Time horizon

The time-span (in years) that you are calculating the return on investment of your program or initiatives.