an evaluation brainstorm

Continuing with the Ten Big Ideas series and discussing building our best campus mission, I want to brainstorm some ways you might evaluate a college ministry.

Like I wrote a couple of days ago, evaluation is / should be highly contextual. These are just ideas for you (or anyone overseeing a college ministry) to use as springboards to the evaluation your college ministry needs!

Seven evaluation scenarios:

  1. Get in touch with ten students on Facebook who were a solid part of your ministry a year ago. Ask if they’ll fill out an anonymous survey you’ve created on The survey can ask how well they were prepared for the young adult world, how their spiritual condition compares with where they were at graduation, if they’re plugged in to Christian community, and what they would change about the college ministry.
  2. Sit down the week following each semester / quarter and determine how well your ministry pursued its detailed, desired outcomes for the semester. Bring student leaders and volunteers in on the evaluation. (NOTE: Requires that you have decided detailed outcomes you’re aiming for before the semester!)
  3. Talk to a peer college minister in town about “trading” a few students for a week. Have students from that ministry visit your ministry to observe its accessibility, friendliness, atmosphere, potential tweaks, overall enjoyment, unique components, etc. After your students visit the other ministry, debrief – with both groups of students.
  4. Give a survey to your present students covering a wide spectrum of spiritual needs and beliefs. Give the same (or a similar) survey each year, so you can track the general progress of the ministry. Make sure each student gets a copy of their survey to help them grow, too.
  5. Sit down for lunch with the last ten students who joined your group. Ask how they heard about it, why they first came, why they joined, what gave them second thoughts, what they would change, how they’ve liked it so far, and so on.
  6. Ask twenty students on campus today what they think about your ministry. Ask for honesty… ask if they’ve ever even heard of you guys… ask for advice! Follow those conversations wherever they lead, and pray that God might lead the conversation to spiritual impact (for them OR for you).
  7. Have five students who don’t come to your ministry (maybe the same students I mentioned in #3) surf your ministry’s web site. Have them find out simple things like directions, times, etc. Ask them if the web site makes a good impression or a bad one. Ask them if your ministry is doing a good job of serving students through your web site.

Leave a Reply