Formative Evaluation of Massachusetts Audubon Society?s Coastal Waterbird Program
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I conducted a formative evaluation of the Massachusetts Audubon Society?s Coastal Waterbird Program (CWP). Specifically, I used document analyses, interviews, and a mail census of CWP staff to assess the appropriateness and adequacy of CWP design and implementation actions. I identified that the Theory of Planned Behavior (TPB) could be used as an appropriate social science foundation to improve the program design and the identification of additional implementation actions. Most implementation actions seemed to focus on the monitoring of nest success and fledging rate of protected bird species that nest on beaches and reacting to public behaviors that are disturbing to these birds. According to TPB, additional benefits likely could be achieved by developing implementation actions focused on proactively engaging the public to prevent disturbing behaviors before they occur. Survey results indicated that field staff already engage in proactive actions despite not being trained extensively to do so. In addition, staff held substantially more positive evaluative beliefs about proactive interactions than reactive interactions. Rather than identifying problems confronting the CWP, these results identify opportunities that can be built on to improve the program.
dissertation or thesis