Google Glass and Empowerment Evaluation

Google Glass:  An Empowerment Evaluation Tool

Google Glass is a voice and gesture activated pair of glasses that lets you connect with the world through the internet. You can take a picture, record a video, send a message, listen to music, or make a telephone or video call – all hands free.

Google Glass has been a useful addition to the evaluation arsenal - especially empowerment evaluation. The American Evaluation Association requested a brief blog posting about our application of this novel and powerful new tool.

“Ok, glass.” That’s how you activate Google Glass. That's how the first blog began as well. The first posting was a slice of life in the day of an evaluator.

My second posting was more of a "how-to" posting - using Google Glass as an evaluation tool.

Community and Staff Members Use

The blog explained how youth (with parental permission) can wear the Glass to produce photovoice productions, sharing their pictures of their neighborhoods and videos of the activities. Their stories can be used as part of their self-assessment, gaining insight into their lives and potentially transforming their worlds.

Community and staff members can post their digital photographs (and videos) on a common server or blog while conducting their self-assessment with the blink of an eye. This ensures community access, a sense of immediacy, and transparency.

Community and staff members can use Google Hangout on Glass to communicate with each other about their ratings, preliminary findings, and plans for the future.

Evaluator Use

Evaluators can use it to communicate with colleagues on the fly, share data (including pictures and video) with team members, and conduct spontaneous videoconference team meetings. Note that everyone doesn’t need to have Glass, as Glass users can leverage its capabilities while connecting with others who are using Smartphones or computers.

Glass stamp dates photos, videos, and correspondence, ensuring historical accuracy.

Glass can be used as an effective “ice breaker” to gain access to a new group.

Evaluators can also solicit feedback from colleagues about their performance, with brief videos of their data collection and reporting behavior. There is a precedent for this type of critique – assessments of student teaching videos.

Glass can be used to provide “on the fly” professional development with streaming video of onsite demonstrations for colleagues working remotely.

In addition, Glass can help maximize evaluator’s multi-tasking behavior (when appropriate).

Tobacco Prevention Project

We introduced Google Glass to our empowerment evaluation colleagues in a tobacco prevention initiative. They embraced it. The group immediately recognized the potential for evaluation use. It was tremendous. The group could see how it could be used to document site visits, share preliminary findings, and even stream video for spontaneous training opportunities.

Contact me for additional information as an empowerment evaluator and Google Glass Explorer.


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