OER Cost Analysis Seminar Resources

The Institute of Education Sciences (IES), among other agencies, is now requiring a cost analysis for funded projects. On July 29, 2020, the COE Office of Educational Research (OER) offered a workshop on cost analysis.

Using the IES Cost Analysis Starter Kit as the basis of this webinar, Elite Research, LLC reviewed the objectives, purpose, and elements of cost analysis; how cost analysis may differ between program types; and considerations that must be taken when working though calculations.

View the seminar PowerPoint presentation and the Zoom recording on the OER Research Support Resources website.

COE faculty member Wei Li also shared his paper Power Analysis for Two-Level Multisite
Randomized Cost-Effectiveness Trials
(Li, Dong, & Maynard, 2020) on methods of designing cost-effectiveness analysis (CEA). https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/10.3102/1076998620911916

His team also developed a statistical tool PowerUp! (Li, Dong, & Maynard, 2020), which is free to download. https://www.causalevaluation.org/power-analysis.html

What exactly is a cost analysis?  As the name implies, a cost analysis focuses on the implementation costs of a program in some cases without regard to the ultimate outcome and in others relative to the outcome impact. It is an important piece in determining the suitability or feasibility of a potential project.  In the area of education or community health, researchers analyze cost in order to (1) describe resources needed for a program, (2) attach value for these resources, and (3) provide estimates to a program’s costs.

The webinar was hosted by Dr. René Paulson and Mindy Chandler.

Dr. Rene Paulson is President and Senior Statistician at Elite Research, LLC. She holds Six Sigma certifications and memberships for several professional organizations, and uses her core passions to empower researchers from academic, business, and nonprofit sectors. In the grantseeking realm, Dr. Paulson assists academic researchers in research design, evaluation planning, and statistical analysis.

Mindy Chandler is a Research & Evaluation consultant with Elite Research, LLC. She has spent over a decade working with nonprofits, managing multi-media and research projects and teams, tailoring country-specific program evaluations, and consulting for international methodologies. Mindy works with researchers on federal, state, and foundation grants, specifically helping them tie strong logic models to program design and evaluations.