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goal-free evaluation

an evaluation of a program that is conducted without special knowledge of the program’s stated goals and objectives and is therefore less subject to the preconceptions or biases of the researcher. Instead, the evaluation attempts to assess the program’s actual effects on its clients and, importantly, any unintended negative side effects emerging from the program. Also called value-free evaluation. Compare goal-based evaluation. See also qualitative evaluation.

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Psychology term of the day

May 21st 2024

attachment theory

attachment theory

a theory that (a) postulates an evolutionarily advantageous need, especially in primates, to form close emotional bonds with significant others: specifically, a need for the young to maintain close proximity to and form bonds with their caregivers; and (b) characterizes the different types of relationships between human infants and caregivers. These relationships have been shown to affect the individual’s later emotional development and emotional stability. See also insecure attachment; secure attachment; Strange Situation. [originally developed by John Bowlby and later expanded by Mary D. Salter Ainsworth]