10 Useful Certifications in Monitoring and Evaluation

Although there is no formal or internationally accepted body which accredits M&E practitioners and experts, there are a range of certificates which will add credibility to your M&E CV, and which will certify that you hold a specific and critical skillset. Whether you are looking to learn the basics, or to formalise your title as ‘Impact Evaluator’, you are sure to find a certification to complement your skillset, and put your career on a new trajectory for growth.

The International Training Centre’s Monitoring and Evaluation Certification Programme

The International Training Centre is situated at the Turin School of Development, which is closely informed by the ILO and other prominent UN organisations. This certification will provide participants with the key skills and techniques to build and use monitoring and evaluation systems. This certification takes a constructive and direct approach to managing for results and improving results over time.

Certificate in M&E Fundamentals

This certified course is hosted and supported by MEASURE Evaluation which is funded by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). This course covers the basics of M&E, and will allow participants to understand what M&E is and why it is such an essential part of development practice. This course will provide participants with an understanding of how to identify and use indicators, and how these fit into an M&E plan. This course closes the gap between indicator selection and implementation, and outlines how these are used in decision making.

Certificate in Evaluation Practice – The Evaluators Institute at Claremont Graduate University

This certified course is offered through the Evaluator’s Institute, located within Claremont Graduate School. If you have been working in the space for some time, but are looking to establish yourself as a recognised evaluator, then this is a useful certification. This certification is designed for those with a background in evaluation who wish to deepen and refine their craft, but is also a good option for those looking to pivot their careers into the field.

Social Impact Strategy: Tools for Entrepreneurs and Innovators

This course is certified by the University of Pennsylvania and is focused on Social Impact Strategy – a leading edge of current development practice. Although not focused on M&E directly, understanding development, and beginning to define change the perspective of business model in innovation is a powerful tool for Social Entrepreneurs. If you are looking to move into evaluation for social impact, it would be useful to understand how to measure social innovations, and how these are built for success.

redrUK Certification in Monitoring and Evaluation

redrUK is a London-based training institution with over 40 years’ experience working with major development agencies including the European Commission, The Red Cross, UNICEF, DFID and the World Food Programme (WFP). This online M&E certification is sure to provide participants with critical skills to implement M&E in practice. This course, offered across five online sessions with breakaway group work between, includes the basic skills in designing M&E systems and activities, but also includes subject areas around bias and ethics, and even includes sections relevant to implementing M&E under the conditions of COVID-19.

Impact Evaluation for Evidence-Based Development Training

This course, certified by the DEVIMPACT Institute, is offered through Charity Job (UK), a leading online job search platform. Participants receive a certificate on completion which would prove useful in an Evaluation job search. This certification is designed for researchers, development programme staff, managers, and policy makers, and the material covers a range of theories used in impact evaluation. The course covers questions around attribution, how to prove it, and the challenge of bias in evaluation practice. It differentiates between different research methods, and associated Impact Evaluation designs. This certification is short, but comprehensive. The DEVIMPACT Institute has other certifications which might be relevant including Training on Project Design using Logical Framework Approach; an entry-level certification that covers, in detail, the purpose of the Logical Framework approach to M&E, and the potential limitations of this.

CIDTs Certificate in Monitoring and Evaluation

This certified course is offered by the University of Wolverhampton’s Centre for International Development and Training (CIDT). This certification equips participants with critical M&E skills, as applied in context.  This face-to-face course is highly experiential, and uses methods such as role play and case studies, and is deeply reflective. Understanding M&E within the project cycle is important to ensure that the practice remains relevant, and connected to broader development practice. This certification would be an excellent option for existing development practitioners, working within complex projects, and who have a need to systematically understand their work, and the impact which it has.

WitsX- CLEAR Anglophone Africa – Results-Based Project Management: Monitoring and Evaluation

This certified course, developed by South Africa’s Wits University, in partnership with CLEAR Anglophone Africa will equip participants with an executive level M&E certification which focuses on results-based project management. The course outlines the ‘Results Framework’, and how to use it to optimise programme implementation to achieve results. This certification is all about bringing evidence-based practice into business and public sector implementation, and would be an excellent opportunity to strengthen these roles with a clear understanding of M&E.

Participatory Monitoring and Evaluation- Institute of Development Studies

This certified short-course, offered by the Institute of Development Studies, specialises in participatory M&E. As development practice grows to become more appreciative, so too should M&E practice, from planning indicators, to designing M&E systems. This perspective holds a particular, and useful view about how change should be measured; an approach which is better suited to complex development scenarios, and systems which are catalytic – learning systems. Participatory practice seeks feedback from participants, as active participants, and designing M&E systems considering this, involves a fundamentally different understanding of how information flows, and how best to gather it, for sound M&E.

Economic Evaluation Basics

Economic Evaluation methods are critical for large projects, at scale, where resources need to be tracked, and programmes evaluated for efficiency. This course will enable participants to understand what economic evaluation is, and how to use this, particularly in making the case for, and implementing public health projects. This is a key set of techniques required as evaluation practice, meeting impact measurement and investment.

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About Angela Biden

Angela Biden is a consulting strategist and M&E consultant. She has worked across a range of development, and business contexts. She holds a Masters in Economics and Philosophy, and has worked in the nexus of M&E and social impact; to help those doing good do more of it; for some 15 years. From policy board rooms, to Tech start-ups, to grass roots NGOs working in the face of the world’s most abject challenges; Angela is focused on conducting relevant and meaningful M&E: fit for purpose, realistic, and useful for stakeholders creating positive change.
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