The National Park Service (NPS) Fundamentals course was developed to help ease the integration of new employees and craft a workforce dedicated to achieving the mission of the NPS. The NPS partnered with the Eppley Institute to design, implement, and provide ongoing analysis in the multi-level evaluation process.
Eppley developed an evaluation program which uses the Kirkpatrick (1994) model. Training was measured at four levels: reaction, learning, transfer, and results. Each of these measured levels was then considered in the development of the final evaluation program. The Eppley Institute:
- Analyzed current and future needs of the training program,
- Developed a plan to meet the needs specific to the content, objectives, and delivery method,
- Reviewed an evaluation plan of student assignments and tests, and
- Scheduled an annual evaluation review.
These evaluations were used to support a plan of continuous improvement of training materials for both the online and classroom Fundamentals courses. Updates and modifications have been made to ensure that the needs of the Fundamentals staff members, the NPS training and development community, and other stakeholders are met. The evaluation plan was implemented in 2002 and continues to be used today.