Research & Evaluation

Since 2005, the Out-of-School Time Resource Center (OSTRC) has engaged in research regarding promising practices in OST professional development, OST professionalism and professional identity, and evaluation frameworks for workshops and conferences. Our work has ranged from literature reviews on adult learning to key findings from our own focus groups, interviews and surveys on professional development.

We have shared our research with both a local and national audience. Most recently, however, we have focused our research efforts in the city of Philadelphia -- identifying and tracking the professional needs and preferences of the OST community, as well as measuring the short term and long term impact of citywide professional development opportunities and resources.

Formerly the OSTRC offered evaluation assistance to numerous organizations that design or provide professional development in the fields of out-of-school time (OST), afterschool, school-age care, positive youth development, and informal education.

We helped these organizations create customized plans to evaluate professional development opportunities such as:

  • Conferences
  • Individual Workshops
  • Workshop series / Ongoing Programs
  • Peer Networking Meetings

We have created research-based instruments that assess participant satisfaction, gains in knowledge and skills, changes in belief and professional identity, and the likelihood of using new information. Follow-up evaluations can document application and youth impact as well. 


The OSTRC menu of evaluation tools includes:


  • Participant Surveys
  • Presenter Self-Assessments
  • Online Questionnaires 
  • Interview, Focus Group, and Observation Protocols

To get started working with our research tools and resources, available free of charge, check out our "Toolkits & Surveys" tab (above left)! For information about OSTRC research and evaluation, contact Project Manager John Price III.