Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2018, $750,000)
This project contains a research and/or development component, as defined in applicable law.
Under the OJJDP FY 2018 Evaluation of Internet Crimes Against Children Training, OJJDP seeks to advance the U.S. Department of Justices mission to reduce violent crime and support victims. This evaluation will inform the improvement of training delivery to support state and local law enforcement agencies in their efforts to develop effective responses to sexual predators who entice children online and/or engage in or facilitate child exploitation, and to prosecute child obscenity and pornography cases. WestEd seeks to collaboratively work with all stakeholders to develop and conduct a high-quality assessment of ICAC training designs, implementation, outcomes, and costs. This study will contribute to the limited research base on the quality of trainings to support law enforcement in investigating Internet crimes against children in order to inform both practice and policy as ICAC training programs are developed and refined.
The evaluation will begin with an intensive planning year carried out in close partnership with OJJDP. During the planning year, the evaluation team will focus on building relationships with stakeholders, reviewing relevant documentation, and developing a comprehensive evaluation plan. Although the final evaluation plan will be developed during the planning year in consultation with OJJDP staff, the preliminary evaluation plan divides the evaluation into four phases. Phase 1 will focus on assessing the quality of ICAC Task Force training designs through intensive document review and key informant interviews. Phase 2 will focus on assessing ICAC Task Force training implementation and using strategies such as document review, interviews, and observations to determine fidelity to training program procedures and curricula. Phase 3 will focus on assessing ICAC Task Force training outcomes, including trainee satisfaction, growth in knowledge and skills, and extent to which training informs organizational improvements and results (e.g., changes in arrest or prosecution rates), using surveys, interviews, and analysis of extant data. Phase 4 will focus on assessing the cost effectiveness of ICAC trainings and will draw upon data collected throughout the evaluation to identify training benefits and costs.
The products developed through this evaluation will include the evaluation plan, practitioner-friendly overview documents and interim reports, progress reports to OJJDP, final progress and technical reports, a plain language executive summary, and data sets and corresponding analysis documents. In addition, the evaluation team will disseminate study findings at various stages of the evaluation at scholarly and practitioner conferences.