Free Coursera online course: Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA)

Highly recommended! A well organised and very clear and systematic exposition. Available at:

About this Course

Welcome to this massive open online course (MOOC) about Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA). Please read the points below before you start the course. This will help you prepare well for the course and attend it properly. It will also help you determine if the course offers the knowledge and skills you are looking for.

What can you do with QCA?

  • QCA is a comparative method that is mainly used in the social sciences for the assessment of cause-effect relations (i.e. causation).
  • QCA is relevant for researchers who normally work with qualitative methods and are looking for a more systematic way of comparing and assessing cases.
  • QCA is also useful for quantitative researchers who like to assess alternative (more complex) aspects of causation, such as how factors work together in producing an effect.
  • QCA can be used for the analysis of cases on all levels: macro (e.g. countries), meso (e.g. organizations) and micro (e.g. individuals).
  • QCA is mostly used for research of small- and medium-sized samples and populations (10-100 cases), but it can also be used for larger groups. Ideally, the number of cases is at least 10.
  • QCA cannot be used if you are doing an in-depth study of one case

What will you learn in this course?

  • The course is designed for people who have no or little experience with QCA.
  • After the course you will understand the methodological foundations of QCA.
  • After the course you will know how to conduct a basic QCA study by yourself.

How is this course organized?

  • The MOOC takes five weeks. The specific learning objectives and activities per week are mentioned in appendix A of the course guide. Please find the course guide under Resources in the main menu.
  • The learning objectives with regard to understanding the foundations of QCA and practically conducting a QCA study are pursued throughout the course. However, week 1 focuses more on the general analytic foundations, and weeks 2 to 5 are more about the practical aspects of a QCA study.
  • The activities of the course include watching the videos, consulting supplementary material where necessary, and doing assignments. The activities should be done in that order: first watch the videos; then consult supplementary material (if desired) for more details and examples; then do the assignments. • There are 10 assignments. Appendix A in the course guide states the estimated time needed to make the assignments and how the assignments are graded. Only assignments 1 to 6 and 8 are mandatory. These 7 mandatory assignments must be completed successfully to pass the course. • Making the assignments successfully is one condition for receiving a course certificate. Further information about receiving a course certificate can be found here:

About the supplementary material

  • The course can be followed by watching the videos. It is not absolutely necessary yet recommended to study the supplementary reading material (as mentioned in the course guide) for further details and examples. Further, because some of the covered topics are quite technical (particularly topics in weeks 3 and 4 of the course), we provide several worked examples that supplement the videos by offering more specific illustrations and explanation. These worked examples can be found under Resources in the main menu. •
  • Note that the supplementary readings are mostly not freely available. Books have to be bought or might be available in a university library; journal publications have to be ordered online or are accessible via a university license. •
  • The textbook by Schneider and Wagemann (2012) functions as the primary reference for further information on the topics that are covered in the MOOC. Appendix A in the course guide mentions which chapters in that book can be consulted for which week of the course. •
  • The publication by Schneider and Wagemann (2012) is comprehensive and detailed, and covers almost all topics discussed in the MOOC. However, for further study, appendix A in the course guide also mentions some additional supplementary literature. •
  • Please find the full list of references for all citations (mentioned in this course guide, in the MOOC, and in the assignments) in appendix B of the course guide.



Free relevant well organised online courses: Statistics, Model Thinking and others

Provided FREE by Coursera in cooperation with Princeton, Stanford and other Universities

Each opening page gives this information: about the Course, About the Instructor, The Course Sylabus, Introductory Video, Recommended Background, Suggested Readings, Course Format, FAQs,

Example class format: “Each week of class consists of multiple 8-15 minute long lecture videos, integrated weekly quizzes, readings, an optional assignment and a discussion. Most weeks will also have a peer reviewed assignment, and there will be the opportunity to participate in a community wiki-project. There will be a comprehensive exam at the end of the course.”

The contents of past courses remain accessible.

RD Comment: Highly Recomended! [ I am doing the stats course this week]

A list of M&E training providers

Update 2014 12 20: The contents of this page have become woefully out of date and it would be more than a full time job to keep it up to date.

My advice is as now as follows:

If you are looking for M&E training opportunities visit the MandE NEWS Training Forum, which lists all upcoming training events. There are many training providers listed there, along with links to their websites

Please also consider taking part in the online survey of training needs.

If you are a training provider, please look at the cumulative results to date of that survey.

I have now deleted all the previous training providers that were shown below

International Summer School on Evaluation Research

Date: 30 August to 3 September 2010
Venue: Lille, France

Call for papers – Deadline: 7 May 2010

The Network of Researchers on Evaluation of the French Evaluation Society (Société Française de l’Evaluation) has the pleasure of:

This Summer School is intended to be an ideal opportunity for those in the scientific community interested in public policy evaluation to compare scientific work on the subject and to discuss the interdisciplinary nature of evaluation research. Continue reading “International Summer School on Evaluation Research”

trainings in Evaluation of Humanitarian Action

Date: 14-16 June, 2010 and 17-18 June, 2010
Venue: near Brussels

Evaluation of Humanitarian Action with ALNAP (Active Learning Network for Accountability and Performance in Humanitarian Action)

14-16 June, 2010

This course is an introductory-to- intermediate level course and has the overall aim of making evaluations of humanitarian action more effective in contributing to the improved performance of interventions and to improve the quality of the evaluation process. This 3-day training course is based on an update of the ALNAP training modules. The course will also introduce some new material, specifically:

  • on joint evaluations: the rationale, experience and learning to date, interwoven throughout the training programme
  • on evaluating policy as well as projects and programmes
  • on innovative learning processes as part of the evaluation process.

Continue reading “trainings in Evaluation of Humanitarian Action”

The Implementation of the Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness: Where do We Stand and How to Move Forward?

Date: 15th -16th April 2010
Venue: Martin’s Central Park Hotel, Boulevard Charlemagne 80, Brussels:

The Paris Declaration (PD), adopted in 2005, lays down principles and procedures for enhancing the effectiveness of aid and specifies them in twelve targets supplied with monitorable indicators and to be achieved by 2010. The quantitative assessment by the OECD of the progress towards 2010 reveals considerable delays of donors and partner countries. With the global economic crisis and growing concern about climate change the targets of the PD have become a great challenge.

EADI in cooperation with the Institute of Development Policy and Management (IOB) will hold a 2 days intensive training workshop in Brussels for development professionals and practitioners. This training workshop is part of the EADI Masterclasses. Continue reading “The Implementation of the Paris Declaration on Aid Effectiveness: Where do We Stand and How to Move Forward?”

International Development Evaluation: Foundations and Practices

Date: 5 – 9 July 2010 (5 full days)
Venue: King’s College London

Course Director: Robert Picciotto, Visiting Professor, King’s College London

International development evaluation is increasingly called upon to support evidence based policy making in the management of development programmes. Growing public pressure to secure better results from poverty reduction initiatives have generated a high demand for quality and independent assessments aimed at improved decision making in different countries, contexts and cultures. Consequently, expectations regarding evaluators’ capabilities are rising.

This summer institute course explores core concepts and emerging issues within the rapidly expanding field of development evaluation. It aims at laying solid foundations for the professional growth of development evaluators, managers and commissioners. It addresses:
– The conceptual foundations and basic principles of development evaluation; its purposes, products and uses
– The analytical and policy implications of development trends for evaluation policies, programmes and projects
– The available tool kits of evaluation methods and techniques
– The emerging guidelines and standards for shaping development evaluation policies and practice
– The governance and management arrangements for development evaluation and their implications

Continue reading “International Development Evaluation: Foundations and Practices”

INTRAC courses on M&E in 2010

1. Introduction to Monitoring and Evaluation

19-23 April 2010 (repeated 27 September–1 October 2010)

£1250 fully residential (4 nights accommodation and all meals), £999 non-residential (including lunch, refreshments and materials)

Oxford, UK

Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) is an essential component of international NGOs, NGOs and civil society organisations striving for greater accountability in their work. There is an increasing demand in the sector for staff to understand what M&E entails, why it is so vital, and how to do it well and in a participatory way. This course will give a thorough introduction to the concepts and practical knowledge and skills needed by new staff, or staff new to M&E. Participants will learn to conduct monitoring and evaluation activities that will help their projects and programmes improve accountability, learning and effectiveness.

Objectives of the course.

At the end of the course, participants will be able to:

  • Define the main terms and concepts associated with the processes of monitoring and evaluating
  • projects and programmes
  • Articulate the key purposes of M&E and be able to prioritise according to the context
  • Select and use a range of tools with confidence
  • Apply results of M&E processes to both accountability and organisational learning.

“My trip to Burundi was fantastic and I really felt I went into it with open eyes after the training…I just wanted you to know how much your training has really helped me launch into monitoring and evaluation. It was just so exciting to finally apply this in the field.”

Danielle Tirello Givens, Program Associate, Africa and the Middle East, Episcopal Relief & Development – a participant on an Introduction to Monitoring and Evaluation course

2. Advanced Monitoring and Evaluation

26-30 April 2010 (repeated on 18-22 October 2010 and 14-18 March 2011)

£1250 fully residential (4 nights accommodation and all meals), £999 non-residential (including lunch, refreshments and materials)

Oxford, UK

This course explores M&E in greater depth than the introductory course. It is particularly relevant for staff that have a responsibility for those who are either managing or coordinating M&E in projects/programmes, trying to improve and enhance current M&E systems, and/or supporting partners to develop and implement effective M&E. The focus is on building coherent, effective and realistic systems that will serve to improve organisational learning and accountability.

Objectives of the course.

At the end of the course, participants will:

  • Have consolidated their understanding of terms and concepts in M&E
  • Be able to identify characteristics of an effective M&E system
  • Be able to design and implement an effective and contextually appropriate M&E system
  • Be better equipped to address challenges faced by their organisation and their partners in developing effective M&E systems.

3. Impact Assessment

26-28 May 2010 (repeated on 6-8 October 2010 and 23-25 March 2011)

With increased pressure on delivery and accountability, the need has never been greater for development and civil society organisations to assess the longer-term impact of their work. This three-day course explores the challenge of measuring impact and attribution and provides very practical tools and methods.

Objectives of the course

At the end of the course, participants will:

  • Have developed conceptual clarity of impact assessment and its purpose
  • Be able to select and apply appropriate methods and tools of assessing impact from a range of approaches
  • Have considered the relevance of their organisation’s theory of change in relation to impact assessment
  • Be better equipped to ensure that impact assessments contribute effectively to organisational learning and accountability.

“Excellent! As a facilitator myself, I’m really impressed.”

Anna Rambe, Programme Development Officer, Forum Syd – a participant on INTRAC’s Impact Assessment course

Training on M&E in South Africa in 2010

Southern Hemisphere consulting and development services are providing the following training courses, during the coming year:

* Project Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation for Development Practitioners*

*How to Develop a Monitoring & Evaluation System*

Dtails of these course, including costs and dates, are available on their website. Or email

The 2010 International Program for Development Evaluation Training

Date: June 7, 2010 to July 2, 2010
Venue: Ottawa, Canada

“Information on the 2010 International Program for Development Evaluation Training is now available at and on-line registration is open.

This year marks IPDET’s tenth-year anniversary and we are very excited by the way this year’s program is taking shape. Once again this year, the Core program will offer eighty hours of instruction and learning in the fundamentals of development evaluation. Participants will also have more than 25 workshops to choose from in the two weeks that follow the Core, including several dynamic new workshops that will be of interest to you and your organization: Continue reading “The 2010 International Program for Development Evaluation Training”

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