AmeriCorps Research & Evaluation Digest: New Resources, Grantee Spotlight, and more


Research and Evaluation Digest
May 2021

ORE Data-Driven mission video slide

New AmeriCorps Research and Evaluation Resources

During the last Research Summit, the AmeriCorps Office of Research and Evaluation captured conversations on the important role of research and evidence for understanding and promoting civic engagement, volunteering, and national service. The newly updated Data-Driven Mission video demonstrates how research and evaluation widely impacts AmeriCorps activities and the research community in general by contributing to four major mission areas:

  • Supporting AmeriCorps programs and advancing scholarship
  • Identifying national service trends
  • Measuring national service impact
  • Promoting national service program expansion


Participatory research - and unique research grants - play an important role at AmeriCorps. View our latest video.

Read more about Research and Evaluation

Screenshot of Zoom video chat with Smith College researchers

Research and Evaluation Grantee Spotlight – Smith College

While the passage to young adulthood presents challenges for almost all young people, those that grow up in socio-economically challenging circumstances face particular obstacles. After high school, young people lose the few existing structures and supports in their day to day lives.

Through Project Coach, Smith College is engaging youth researchers to explore the lived experience of the transition with a focus on how out-of-school programs provide support as young people move through this integral transition. The research will help inform solutions that help young adults better navigate the move towards independence and young adulthood.

The preliminary findings show that out-of-school programs can help smooth the transition by providing developmental relationships, exposure to skill and identity-building opportunities, and ongoing support even after high school. The team has maintained a website for all of their research updates, digital stories with first-hand experiences, resource guides for students and educators, and more.

View Grantee Spotlight

Scaling Evidence-Based Models Project

Through research and evaluation, AmeriCorps is committed to finding what works and making that information accessible to others. Scaling evidence-based national service program models further improves community outcomes and lives, while also making AmeriCorps and its grantees good stewards of public resources. Using this body of knowledge, AmeriCorps developed a suite of resources included guides, checklists, and a soon-to-be-released interactive virtual scaler tool to assist other organizations in identifying, replicating, and scaling effective programs.


Case Studies:

Reports and Articles:

Learn More

Research and Evidence Webinar Recording Available: Power Analysis 3-Part Webinar Series

Have you ever wondered how large of a sample size is needed to obtain reliable evaluation evidence? Or what statistical power means? AmeriCorps’ Office of Research and Evaluation and guest speakers from University of Chicago’s NORC answered those questions and more during the three-part Power Analysis webinar series.

  • Level I: Defining and Understanding Statistical Power Analysis: Learn about the concept of statistical power and why it’s an important tool for evaluation planning. Statistical power helps estimate the sample size requirements for obtaining reliable evidence of program impacts in outcome and impact evaluations. Reliable evidence is the basis for program improvement, evidence building, and replication and scaling. 

  • Level II: Basic Mechanics of Power Analysis: This training webinar covers the basic mechanics of power analysis pro. It provides technical content on how each error type threatens a study and how power analysis complements Type 2 error.

  • Level III: Applied Power Analysis: This training module focuses on applied power analysis. It also covers examples for common designs and offers a tutorial on how to use the analysis charts to calculate the power analysis for evaluation.

The webinar recordings, handouts, and presentation materials are now available online.

Watch Webinars

What's New on the Evidence Exchange

Check out some of the new research and resources added to the Evidence Exchange:

Return on Investment Study Reports:

The Final Social Innovation Fund Evidence Reports: