Assessment is the process of systematically gathering information as part of an evaluation. Evaluation is a broader term that refers to all of the methods used to find out what happens as a result of using a specific intervention or practice. The knowledge that practitioners and families gain as a result of evaluating a practice through assessment helps them understand the effects of the practice, make appropriate changes, or plan a different practice, if needed. For example, in the situation with China and Aaron, gathering assessment information about Aaron’s satisfaction with partnership practices could help China determine if their relationship was evolving into a trusting partnership. The results of an evaluation also can indicate the need to consider additional ways to enhance a trusting partnership.
To learn how well partnership-oriented practices are working, China will need to gather assessment information to help her evaluate the family-professional partnership between her and Aaron.