Identifying essential program components helps you to clarify what you want your program to achieve and how.
Start by considering the overall goal of your program. This is the issue, in broad terms, that you want to address and that you researched in the background research stages. Your program goal is like your program’s mission statement.
Next, how would you describe the change that your program or intervention intends to make?
With your goal and this desired change in mind, you can begin to define specific and measurable objectives. A useful way to remember how to construct a well-defined objective is to make it SMART:
Specific: Target a specific area for improvement. To do this you need to identify the who, where, what, and how:
- Who (Target audience)
- Where (Setting)
- What (Content, or approach and activities)
- How (Mode of delivery)
Measurable: Include a numeric or descriptive measure that addresses how you will know that your objective has been met.
Achievable: The objective needs to be attainable with the resources (staff, money, time) available.
Relevant: Address risk and protective factors relevant to the target group.
Time bound: Define the time period during which your objectives will be achieved.
In the following pages, we will explore and identify each of these important components of your program objectives, beginning with the Who, Where, What, and How. As you proceed, please keep your program goal in mind.
If you entered your program goal in the formative research section, it will appear below. If you haven’t written your goal yet, take a minute to re-visit this page or write in your goal now.