Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Education


Educational Leadership

First Advisor

Dr. Carol Sheffer

Second Advisor

Dr. Dale Brethower


The purpose of this study was to operationalize, test, and assess the utility, feasibility, propriety, and accuracy of the "success case method." A review of the literature revealed that although evaluation is presently being conducted in educational training programs, it is often not practical nor cost-effective. The Kirkpatrick model for evaluation provided the conceptual framework for viewing evaluation of training. A training managers' interview questionnaire was developed to elicit perceived changes in trainees' performance after training. Nine success cases, selected from a group of 37 administrators, were interviewed by telephone 2 weeks after the training. Selection criteria and procedures were developed by the researcher. Interview information was analyzed and evaluation reports were written and presented to several evaluation audiences.

Meta-evaluation of the success case method took place after completion of the evaluation report writing. The Joint Committee Standards (1981) provided a set of standards to assess the utility, feasibility, propriety, and accuracy of the success case method as an evaluation method. Judgments were made by the researcher based on interviews with company training managers and three success case trainees .

The major conclusions drawn from the study were:

1. The success case method was successfully operationalized and tested in the administrator training program.

2. The success case method was judged to be feasible for use by persons with little formal evaluation training. The method was costeffective, and an accurate source of information for program revisions.

3. Limitations include the potential bias of self-reporting, the multiple roles played by training managers and the researcher, and interpretation of content analyses for report summaries.

The success case method was discussed in relation to practice and research in educational evaluation. Recommendations were made for potential users of the success case method.

Access Setting

Dissertation-Open Access