Oliver, Martin; Harvey, Jen; Conole, Grainne and Jones, Ann (2007). Evaluation. In: Conole, Grainne and Oliver, Martin eds. Contemporary perspectives in e-learning research; themes, methods and impact on practice. Open and flexible learning series. Abingdon, Oxon: RoutledgeFalmer, pp. 203–216.

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The importance of evaluation has grown in recent years so that this topic has become the focus of considerable policy and research interest (Oliver, 2000). As new learning technologies emerge there is a need to evaluate how these are used to support an increasingly diverse student population. All staff are now expected to carry out evaluations to account for resources or to justify strategic initiatives. Additionally, for individuals trying to instigate change, evaluation data can be important in providing relevant information to initiate, support and empower change by the “production of knowledge that makes a difference” (Patton, 1997).

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