The evaluation methodology comprised two questionnaires and in-depth, follow-up interviews with a sample of participants 6-12 months after they completed the course.
All attendees on the ‘Be Your Best Self’ 2020-2021 training pilot were asked to complete a pre-course and post-course questionnaire. The questionnaires were designed to provide evidence of the impact of the course on attendees’ confidence in their skills, strengths and experiences, their connections to other women in agriculture and views of the course.
A total of seven follow-up interviews were then conducted with women from across the four cohorts six to twelve months after they completed the training, between February and November 2021. This represents a sample of 10% of all attendees. The interviews lasted 30-45 mins and were semi-structured with open questions.
The interviews with participants focused on:
- what they hoped to get out of the course
- its impact on their levels of confidence
- the usefulness of any skills they developed
- any changes to their role on the farm or at work
- their connections to other women in agriculture
This stage of the evaluation involved women of different ages (from 21 to 51) and from various locations across Scotland. Participants were at different stages of their lives, and had a range of responsibilities, from managing a farm to working on the family farm, studying full-time, caring for children or working full-time at an agricultural organisation. The research has indicated how these factors have shaped the course outcomes.
Participants from cohorts 1-4 of the ‘Be Your Best Self’ 2020-2021 pilot were randomly selected and asked to take part in an interview. The interviews were conducted by phone or online and recorded with participants’ consent. The recordings were then transcribed, coded and analysed. Respondents were sent a copy of the transcript to review.
In addition to the questionnaires, the interviews have provided detailed insight into the experiences of women who completed the training, their views on the course and how they have put the skills or tools they learnt into practice in their daily lives and work. The interviews have also enabled us to explore whether participants gained a support network of other women in agriculture once the course finished.
The main findings from the questionnaires and follow-up interviews are summarised in this report, and a one-page summary will be shared with participants.
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