How do we do evaluation work in an ethical manner? Does our program evaluation require ethics approval? These are common question for individuals new to evaluation. This section of the toolkit provides you with information and screening tools that will help you to determine if your evaluation project requires ethics approval. But more importantly, how to keep ethical considerations at the forefront in evaluation planning and implementation.


  • Policy or legislative requirements often stipulate that research projects involving people or their health information must be reviewed by a Research Ethics Board (REB). This raises a number of questions. For example, what should be done with projects that are not considered research but involve people or their health information? Should quality improvement (QI) or program evaluation projects also be assessed for their risk to people? A pRoject Ethics Community Consensus Initiative (ARECCI), an initiative of Alberta Innovates – Health Solutions (AIHS), developed this four-step, web-based ARECCI Ethics Screening Tool to provide practical “on the ground” decision-support assistance to project leaders and teams as they grapple with these very complex questions. Content experts have developed the tool, and its context validity continues to be enhanced through focused implementation with experts and their projects.
  • In addition, the ARECCI Network developed the ARECCI Ethics Guidelines for Quality Improvement and Evaluation to help project leaders and administrators manage ethics-related risk.
  • Let’s Get Ethical! Ethical Considerations in Program Evaluation — This module will support evaluators in understanding the importance of ethics when working with participants and increases their ability to identify key ethical standards and principles. It will also help evaluators with the application of ethics in an evaluation context.
  • Canadian Evaluation Society’s Ethical Guidelines for Evaluators — an important tool for Canadian evaluators that focuses on competence, integrity and accountability.
  • Necessary and optional elements to include in a consent statement or information letter – The following information has been adapted with permission from the Community Research Ethics Office (CREO) document Consent Statement or Information Letter Guidelines. The full document is available through:



  •  Check back – new tools will be added regularly


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