Self Evaluation toolkit: FAQs

We’ve produced an online Self Evaluation toolkit for the arts and cultural sector.

The tool is for people, companies and partnerships in the arts, cultural and creative sectors.

Here you can find answers to some frequently asked questions about the Self Evaluation toolkit. 

FAQs 

What is the purpose of the toolkit?

How does the toolkit work?

Who can use the toolkit?

Is it a requirement of our funding agreement that we use the toolkit?

How will the Arts Council use the data entered into the tool?

How was the tool developed?

How will the tool stay relevant to the sector?

How does the toolkit relate to other Arts Council quality and evaluation tools?

What is the purpose of the toolkit?

Self evaluation is a vital first step towards improving your work.  It can also help with self-confidence and resilience. 

The Self Evaluation toolkit is a clear, easy to use online resource that can help you improve different aspects of your work.

We want the tool to provide meaningful learning for organisations and individuals, and help make your work more adaptive and sustainable.

It can help make sure your strategies and operations improve over time, and are as strong and fit for purpose as they can be.

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How does the toolkit work?

The tool has four sections that include a total of 24 questions. Each question offers you the chance to rate out of ten how you are performing in a particular area, and how important this area is to you right now. You can also make notes as you go along.

While completing each question, the tool offers links to activities that can help you improve or think about your answers.

You can complete the sections or questions in any order, or come back another time to pick up where you left off.

You can complete an evaluation individually at your desk, by discussing the questions as a group or you can use some of the activities to develop your own reflections and action plans.

A report will be available for your evaluation once it is complete. You can preview this at any time.

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Who can use the toolkit?

The toolkit is for both individuals and organisations.  You can complete the questions as a team or on your own. 

You can use the toolkit to evaluate your work after a specific project or service, or to develop your organisation’s strategy as a whole.

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Is it a requirement of our funding agreement that we use the toolkit?

If you are joining our National Portfolio for the 2018-22 funding period, self evaluation will be a requirement of your funding agreement.

However, you don’t have to use this resource to do so.  There are a number of other tools and resources you can use to fulfil this requirement and we provide links to these resources within the Self Evaluation Toolkit.

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How will the Arts Council use the data entered into the tool?

Your answers to the evaluation questions are private.

We won’t have access to any of the data or notes you enter into the tool. Your evaluation findings are for your use only and do not affect funding agreements or grant applications.

The only data we will gather from the toolkit will tell us how many people are using it, the size of the organisations using the toolkit and the main art form entered for each evaluation.

We are registered with the Information Commissioner to process personal data and are named as a data controller under the register kept by the Information Commissioner in accordance with section 19 of the DPA.

You can find out more about the Data Protection Act 1998 on the Information Commissioner's website

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How was the tool developed?

We consulted with organisations and individuals across the arts and culture sector to build a tool that meets your needs and is easy to use.

You can find a list of the organisations and individuals involved in the consultation here.

If you have suggestions on how we can improve the tool, you can contact us here.

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How will the tool stay relevant to the sector?

The tool encourages on-going self evaluation by bringing together new and existing resources.

We’ll keep adding content and resources to the tool to keep it relevant and up to date.

If you have suggestions on how we can improve the tool or want to report a problem, you can contact us here – please do get in touch, we want this resource to be as useful as it can be for you, the user. 

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How does the toolkit relate to other Arts Council quality and evaluation tools?

The Self Evaluation toolkit focuses on management and work behind the scenes, rather than artistic or cultural quality and impact. It refers to approaches like Quality Metrics and Quality Principles where appropriate but emphasises improvements you can make to ensure your work is more adaptive and sustainable.

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