Realist Winter School

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Presenter:  Dr Gill Westhorp, Professorial Research Fellow, Northern Institute

Date: May 29, 2017 to Jun 02, 2017

Time: 9:00am to 4:30pm

Contact person:  Pawinee Yuhun
T: 08 8946 7465

Location:  CDU Sydney Campus, Level 10, 815 George Street, Haymarket, Sydney

Target audience:  •Those practising – or wanting to know more about – realist evaluation, realist synthesis and realist research •PhD students and supervisors •Evaluators and researchers – in house, independent, and academic •Program managers and other staff with responsibilities in evaluation •People designing new policies and programs •Those commissioning realist work, or using realist findings – service providers and policy officers in both government and non-government sectors

The Realist Research Evaluation and Learning Initiative (RREALI) and the Evaluation and Knowledge Impact team from the Northern Institute, Charles Darwin University are pleased to announce a five day intensive training program in realist evaluation, realist review (a realist systematic literature review) and other forms of realist research.

This program will explain the underlying assumptions of a realist philosophy of science, which underpins all realist methodologies.  With a different focus each day, it will take participants step by step through implications for purpose, design, questions, data requirements, analytic methods and reporting guidelines for both realist evaluation and realist review.  Each day has a different focus and will cover the “what”, “why” and “how” for each topic.

The program will provide opportunities for participants to link understanding of key ideas to practical application and skills practice in each of these steps. It will also provide time for individuals or teams to work on or develop their own projects with support from facilitators and peers; and sessions in which individuals will present their work in progress, receive feedback and discuss issues and strategies in realist design and methodologies. All participants should bring a project (realist evaluation, realist review or other realist research) to work on during the program.

The program will be led by Dr Gill Westhorp, an internationally recognised specialist and trainer in realist methodologies, together with a team of facilitators from Charles Darwin University. Gill is a co-author of the international standards for realist review and realist evaluation, co-author of the Rameses training materials for realist review, co-author and editor for the Rameses training materials for realist evaluation, and author of a number of methods articles and publications. She has developed or adapted a number of specialist methods for use in realist work including realist action research, realist program logic models, and two variants of realist modification of Most Significant Change stories (one for use in cross-language settings).  She has also co-developed realist methods for use in very large-scale evaluations. Gill has undertaken or supported realist evaluation and review work in health, education, training, family support programs, early childhood development, international development and climate change.